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Canton man sentenced to prison after admitting probation violation

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CANTON — A Canton man living in a halfway house was sentenced last week to 20 to 60 months in state prison for violating his probationary sentence.

Jason A. Novak, 42, a resident of North Country Freedom Homes, 25 Dies St., admitted Sept. 25 in St. Lawrence County Court that he consumed cocaine and alcohol on several occasions while on probation, and tested positive for cocaine and marijuana Sept. 12. He also told County Judge Jerome J. Richards that he failed to complete a substance abuse program. Mr. Novak was placed on five years’ probation Feb. 3 for his conviction of third-degree burglary.

In other court action last week:

James D. Holland, 38, of 313 Bromaghin Road, Ogdensburg, began serving 120 days of his weekend sentence Friday at St. Lawrence County jail after admitting he violated his probationary sentence by operating a motor vehicle on a suspended license and with no ignition-interlock device. He was placed on five years’ probation Feb. 7, 2011, for a felony driving while intoxicated conviction.

Jerod J. McDonald, 29, of 621 Rensselaer Ave., Ogdensburg, was sentenced to five years’ probation after pleading guilty to aggravated DWI, a felony. His blood alcohol content was 0.24 percent, three times the legal limit of 0.08 percent BAC. He also was convicted of misdemeanor DWI on March 16 in Ogdensburg City Court. Sentencing was scheduled for Dec. 10, and he was released under probation supervision.

Also in County Court, jury selection is under way in the trial of a Gouverneur man accused of forcibly entering a home, then choking one of its occupants.

Scott Briggs, 45, of 34 Johnstown Road, allegedly forced a door open and entered the home of Stephanie Sawyer, 42 Smith St., in February 2011, then choked Robert Rathbun once inside. Mr. Briggs is facing charges of second-degree burglary and criminal obstruction of breathing or blood circulation.

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