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Maximum sentence imposed on Newfane meth maker

LOCKPORT – Niagara County Judge Matthew J. Murphy III on Thursday imposed the heaviest sentence he could against a man who was making methamphetamine in his home.

Michael E. Jones, 28, of Main Street, Newfane, drew two years in prison and two years of post-release supervision for his guilty plea to attempted third-degree manufacture of meth. He was arrested Sept. 17 after sheriff’s deputies responded to a report of a man walking up and down Main Street in Newfane with a gun.

The gun turned out to be a BB gun, but a neighbor directed deputies to a garbage can in which they found a portable meth-making kit belonging to Jones. Deputies also found numerous bags containing meth residue and five long guns in the home. Murphy said the nearby Newfane schools were locked down during the incident.

The judge refused a request from Assistant Public Defender Michael E. Benedict to send Jones to the state prison system’s drug treatment facility. “He’s had numerous opportunities in the past. He’s done nothing to help himself,” Murphy said, adding that Jones has been “in and out of jail and prison since he was 19.”

Benedict said Jones, who has washed out of other drug rehabilitation programs, decided against entering the judicial diversion program for fear he would fail and be given a longer prison term.