Aug 28, 2014
Aug 21, 2014
Aug 14, 2014
Jul 24, 2014
Judge gives Salem engineer with underwater mortgage year in jail for growing pot
Henry Danico, 47, was sentenced to a year in county jail Monday after pleading guilty to manufacturing a controlled drug.
Judge N. William Delker rejected an argument that Danico should serve little or no time behind bars in light of medical marijuana being legalized in other states.
"That argument carries zero weight with me," Delker said. "Regardless of whatever is going on in another state, the New Hampshire legislature decided to make a policy decision the manufacturing is a very serious offense that carries substantial state prison time."
Delker added, "No state in this country made your conduct in any way, state or form legal."
Prosecutors say Danico was caught by Salem police with 88 marijuana plants inside his home on Aug. 7, 2011. He pleaded guilty to the drug charge last month in Rockingham County Superior Court.
Danico had converted part of his home to an indoor marijuana growing operation, according to Assistant County Attorney Michael Zaino.
"He had a rather sophisticated growing operation," Zaino said.
Prosecutors had argued for a 1½- to 5-year state prison sentence.
Zaino said the plants discovered by police were in various stages of growth, showing that Danico's activity was not based on a one-time lapse in judgment.
"When you break it down to brass tax, it's an ongoing decision and ongoing choice," Zaino said.
Defense lawyer Sven Wiberg argued that a state prison sentence for his client would be too harsh of a punishment, comparing it to a similar case in the last year that drew a no-time sentence.
Wiberg said his client, an engineer by trade, had no criminal record prior to his arrest and insisted on pleading guilty prior to jury selection in his case.
"I have never seen it in my career before," Wiberg said, adding that his client asked to go to jail on the day he pleaded guilty before he was even sentenced.
Wiberg said Danico only turned to growing marijuana once his mortgage increased to an amount greater than what he initially owed as a result of the housing crisis.
"He was underwater. When things blew up, he went from having equity to being an owner of a house with a balance on mortgage that was greater than what he owed."
Danico will remain on probation for two years.
READER COMMENTS: 0
- Police say North Hampton man distributed child sex abuse images - 0
- Sexual assault charge in Keene - 0
- Keene man charged with threatening Nelson teen with gun - 0
- More details released about Nashua drive-by shooting - 0
- Portsmouth man charged with two felony drug counts - 0
- Affidavits show woman was shot as feds conducted downtown Manchester drug raid - 0
- Newton man charged with kidnapping, sexual assault of 15-year-old Mass. girl - 1
- Two felony charges for alleged Portsmouth drug dealer - 0
- Nashua man arrested in violent purse snatching - 0
READER COMMENTS: 1
- On Baseball: Fisher Cats manager Meacham learned a few things, too - 0
- First and 10: Old No. 1 begins as new No. 1 - 0
- NHIAA Girls' Soccer Preview: All eyes on Bedford, Exeter - 0
- Another View -- Dan McGuire: We Free Staters are not some threat to be feared - 0
- Taxpayer rights: Left, right should restore them - 0
- Hooksett highs: A good multiple choice test - 0
- No paper Monday - 0
- Patriots' Garoppolo solid, but Giants eke out 16-13 win in preseason finale - 0
- Education business tax credit program upheld - 0
Enter to win tickets to see Paula Poundstone
Win tickets to see Steven Wright
Where is Shaheen? Hiding from you
Where is Shaheen? Hiding from you
Tuition tax credits make a return
- Mass. Supreme Judicial Court has found upskirt photos taken on a subway aren't illegal. Should such voyeurism be a crime?
- Total Votes: 917