Sentencing memorandum recounts drug use, family life, 14 children of man to be sentenced for selling drugs

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YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) — A sentencing memorandum for a man who is expected to be sentenced next week for selling drugs said that he has been using them longer than selling them.

The memorandum for 38-year-old Dewon Dawson Jr. in the U.S. Northern District Court of Ohio also said he has never received any kind of treatment for substance abuse.

Dawson is expected to be sentenced Nov. 18 before U.S. Judge Dan Aaron Polster on charges of possession with intent to distribute crack cocaine and possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug crime. He pleaded guilty to the charges in July.

The memorandum by defense attorney Fernando O. Mack says that attorneys in the case have agreed on a sentence of 10 years in federal prison.

Mack writes that his client grew up poor in a neighborhood in Youngstown that was “rife with violence and drug activity.” His client also has 14 children, Mack wrote, including one with his present wife.

Dawson’s father left the family at a very young age and he dropped out of school when he was in eighth grade. He began smoking marijuana and drinking and at the age of 18 and began taking cocaine, which quickly developed into a daily crack cocaine habit until he was arrested in April of 2019, according to court documents.

He has high blood pressure and anxiety and has had trouble sleeping while he has been in jail awaiting the outcome of his case, Mack wrote.

Mack asked the judge to uphold the sentencing agreement.

Dawson and seven others were indicted for bringing large amounts of cocaine into Youngstown from August 2017 to June 2018.

When a search warrant was served in March of 2018 at an Idlewood Avenue home as part of the investigation, one of the defendants had over $153,000 cash and four guns, a trial brief said.

The brief said Dawson had a .40-caliber handgun, a .38-caliber revolver, a .32-caliber revolver and an AK-47 pistol; over 54 grams of cocaine; and $6,800 cash.

Dawson was also one of three charged in 2008 with murder for a shooting death on West Myrtle Avenue, but the charges against all three defendants were later dropped by prosecutors after the only eyewitness recanted their testimony.

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