Since suffering a stroke six years ago that paralyzed the right side of his body, Tommy Lee Canty Jr.—the first drug dealer convicted as a federal “super-kingpin” in Maryland, under a 1988 law—has been virtually helpless, requiring a lift to get to and from his bed and wheelchair and a catheter to urinate. Yesterday, his prosecutor, veteran assistant U.S. attorney Andrea Smith, filed a motion to reduce Canty’s life sentence to time served, so that he can move to a Baltimore nursing home to live out his days on federal probation. He was convicted in 1990, when he was 24 years old, and now is 48 and living at a prison hospital in Minnesota called Federal Medical Center, Rochester. Smith’s motion says Canty’s “life expectancy is indeterminate, but his long-term prognosis is poor due to a high risk of injury from seizures [or] another stroke or heart attack due to poorly controlled hypertension.” Though he “can understand what is being said to him,” Canty “is unable to speak,” the motion adds. Canty’s prosecution was a major feather in the cap of law enforcers in the late 1980s, when he was considered one of a new breed of young dealers, who, […]
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