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Wednesday, July 29, 2009

 

After 100 alcohol arrests judge draws line

After 100 alcohol arrests, judge draws line

 

Sharon Coolidge 

Cincinnati Enquirer

Last Updated: 12:27 pm July 28, 2009

Jesse Shadrick has more than 100 alcohol related arrests in Hamilton County, Kentucky and Tennessee after nearly drinking himself to death his whole life.

The homeless man shuffled into court Tuesday, knowing the robbery charge he pleaded guilty to carried a possible sentence of up to five years in prison.

But Hamilton County Common Pleas Judge Pat DeWine said enough is enough: the cycle of arrest and release must be broken.

Instead of sending Shadrick, 41, to prison or giving him another probation term, which Shadrick would likely violate anyway, DeWine sentenced Shadrick to get alcohol and mental health treatment and Talbert House program that will keep him locked up until it's done.

"You have over 100 alcohol-committed offenses, in and out of here," DeWine said. "Frankly, you're going to kill yourself if you don't get this under control.

"I am going to try and get you some treatment," he said.

Though tears, Shadrick told the judge: "I have been in this state of alcoholism for quite some time now. I have been in oblivion you might say for 22 or 23 years."

Shadrick, who apologized for his unkempt appearance, said he wants to get off the streets, tired of life how it is.

"I want to get sober and be somebody, someday, any way," Shadrick said.

If Shadrick doesn't comply with treatment, DeWine said the second chance would evaporate and he'd sentence him to three years in prison.

Born in Cincinnati, but raised in Tennessee, Shadrick started drinking at a young age, and really, never stopped. He dropped out of school in the eighth grade and the arrests started shortly thereafter.

In his mid-20s he began hitch-hiking from Ohio to Tennessee to Florida, never settling in any one place. He's racked up numerous arrests - mostly alcohol related - in all three states.

He lists his home as the Drop Inn Center in downtown Cincinnati.

Looking at Shadrick, the first thing a person notices is his nose, bent to the side.

He broke in during a skirmish with Tennessee police and never had the money to get it fixed, he said.

The crime that landed Shadrick in court this time was a felony charge of robbery. He stole an 18-pack of Budweiser from the Sunoco on West 8th Street downtown. When store owner Christopher Zimmerman chased Shadrick outside, Shadrick hit Zimmerman in the stomach with the stolen contraband.

That confrontation upped the charge from misdemeanor theft to felony robbery.


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