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Brandon Sun - PRINT EDITION

Jail visit ends in prison time

He arrived at jail in a car that held a gun, drugs and booze with the intent to pick up a buddy who had served his time.

Now he’ll spend time in a cell himself — he’s been sentenced to more than four years in prison for the ill-conceived trip.

The mix of a loaded revolver, drugs and alcohol at a jail was a potential powder keg of trouble, Judge Shauna Hewitt-Michta said.

"The accused intentionally created a very real, very alarming risk of actual harm," Hewitt-Michta said.

Jonathan Lee Martens of Winnipeg was arrested during a "high-risk takedown" at the Brandon jail on April 17.

During his recent sentencing, Crown attorney Grant Hughes described how Brandon police learned that Martens and his girlfriend were going to arrive at the jail in a vehicle that contained cocaine and a firearm.

In the days leading up to Martens’ arrest, police intercepted a series of phone calls between him and his friend, an inmate due to be released from jail.

In one call, Martens expresses concern about the possibility of being pulled over in a vehicle with cocaine, a handgun and a drunk woman. In another call there was talk of the pickup and marijuana.

In yet another call, the inmate asked Martens if he had the "22." Martens confirmed that he did, his friend asked him to bring it with him and Martens said, "If people lip-off, they get shot."

Concerned, police were ready when Martens’ girlfriend drove a car into a fenced enclosure at the jail’s admissions area shortly before midnight on April 17.

Martens was in the passenger seat.

First, police arrested Martens’ girlfriend as she entered the building and she was found carrying bags that held a substance believed to be crystal meth.

Then police initiated a high-risk takedown to arrest Martens who stepped out of the car but didn’t follow police directions.

"What are we doing? What’s going on?" Martens asked before he was finally tackled by one police officer.

He still put up a fight as he was arrested.

Police found the small .22-calibre revolver under the passenger seat of the vehicle. It was loaded with two live rounds and one spent round.

Police also found about three grams of marijuana, a small amount of benzocaine (typically used by dealers to dilute cocaine) and a bag with residue which was determined to likely be cocaine.

The vehicle also contained bottles of vodka and whisky.

Martens, who reeked of alcohol at the time of his arrest, later admitted to owning the gun, marijuana and the benzocaine.

He has a lengthy criminal record and had only been released from a stint in jail two months before this incident.

He was banned from having guns at the time.

The girlfriend is the daughter of a reputed Hells Angels member, court has heard.

Martens, 23, has been held in custody since and was finally sentenced on Nov. 1.

He pleaded guilty to possessing a restricted firearm without a registration certificate and to possession of a firearm while prohibited.

The Crown dropped a number of other charges including one for drug possession.

Hewitt-Michta sentenced him to a total of four years and six months in prison, minus 198 days pre-sentence custody.

» ihitchen@brandonsun.com

Republished from the Brandon Sun print edition November 13, 2012

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Why drop charges? If the idiot does the crime then start making them do the time! CJS is totally flawed.

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He arrived at jail in a car that held a gun, drugs and booze with the intent to pick up a buddy who had served his time.

Now he’ll spend time in a cell himself — he’s been sentenced to more than four years in prison for the ill-conceived trip.

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He arrived at jail in a car that held a gun, drugs and booze with the intent to pick up a buddy who had served his time.

Now he’ll spend time in a cell himself — he’s been sentenced to more than four years in prison for the ill-conceived trip.

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