Seven years in prison for man caught with gun, cocaine and fentanyl after Hamilton car crash
Published November 3, 2023 at 9:11 am
A man caught with a gun, cocaine and fentanyl after a car crash in Hamilton has been sentenced to seven years in prison.
The man, Jeffrey Kumi, now 31, was involved in a minor car crash in the city’s downtown in October 2021. He fled the scene of the crash as police responded. The security cameras of numerous buildings captured Kumi discarding various objects in a nearby alleyway.
Later, investigators found fentanyl and cocaine in the alley. Hamilton Police caught up to Kumi in a nearby convenience store and arrested him there. He was charged with failure to remain at a collision scene, possession of cocaine, possession of fentanyl, two charges related to illicit firearm possession, and breaching four probation and release orders.
The primary issue in the trial was whether or now Kumi was in fact the man involved in the crash, and who ditched the drugs. Justice Joseph De Fillipis found that he was indeed that man and convicted him on Oct. 27, 2023. The drug charges were initially for intent to traffic, but were knocked down to simple possession.
De Fillipis sentenced Kumi to an additional four years and seven months in addition to time he spent behind bars pre-trial for a total of seven years and seven months.
Kumi has a long criminal record with eight convictions between 2007, when he was 15, and 2018. These include four assaults, possession of cocaine for the purpose of trafficking, violation of court orders, dangerous driving and flight from police. He was also convicted of first-degree murder as a youth.
While Kumi’s sister wrote a letter of support for his, De Fillipis rejected it saying, “it is obvious that her love for her brother has blinded her to the man he has become. It cannot be said that the defendant has always been a man of ‘upright character’. Indeed, he has been a very ‘bad person’ and his actions, as demonstrated by the past and present offences, cannot be dismissed as mistakes’.”
“The defendant’s moral blameworthiness is high,” De Fillipis wrote, “He possessed a loaded handgun, while prohibited from doing so, and in breach of other court orders. He discarded the weapon in a parking lot in leaving the scene of an accident and in flight from police. He was also in possession of illicit drugs in violation of court orders. All this occurred in late afternoon in downtown Hamilton.”
However, De Fillipis noted Kumi’s contrition. In an address to the court Kumi said he is sorry for what he had done and described difficult conditions in prison, exacerbated by overcrowding and COVID-19 lockdowns. “He concluded by stating ‘this is not the life I want. I want to take a heavy equipment course and provide for me and my family.” De Fillipis said, “I accept the sincerity of the defendant’s remarks. I understand the potential for rehabilitation.”
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