Gloversville man’s drug sale conviction upheld


ALBANY — The state Appellate Division on Thursday affirmed the 2014 jury trial conviction of a Gloversville man on two counts of third-degree criminal sale of a controlled substance and two counts of third-degree criminal possession of a controlled substance.

Jason Quintana, 44, formerly of 88 Fremont St., is currently incarcerated in the state’s Groveland Correctional Facility in Sonyea. He is serving an eight-year sentence, as a second felony offender.

Quintana, represented by Albany attorney Lucas G. Mihuta, appealed his conviction.

Fulton County Assistant District Attorney Amanda Nellis responded for the prosecution.

Quintana was arrested by Gloversville police in July 2013 in connection with an incident on Fremont Street in Gloversville. He was accused of possessing and selling heroin in Gloversville.

Thursday’s nine-page decision by the Appellate Division of state Supreme Court reviewed several aspects of Quintana’s case.

He was convicted Oct. 2, 2014, by a Fulton County Court jury.

“As an initial matter, defendant argues that the indictment is defective as it does not contain the requisite signature of the grand jury foreperson as required by statute,” the decision notes.

But appellate judges said the indictment was signed by the district attorney with an “affixed backer” signed by the grand jury foreperson, which satisfies statutory requirements.

The appeal also contended the verdict was not supported by legally sufficient evidence and was against the weight of the evidence.

“In view of the foregoing evidence, we find that the evidence proffered at trial established, beyond a reasonable doubt, that defendant knowingly and unlawfully possessed heroin, a narcotic drug, with the intent to sell it and, indeed, knowingly and unlawfully sold heroin to the [confidential informant] on two separate occasions,” the decision indicated.

The court also addressed issues such as a photo lineup’s makeup, and Quintana’s contention that his sentence was too harsh.

“We do not find defendant’s sentence to be harsh or excessive,” the decision stated. “At sentencing, defendant expressed remorse for, and insight regarding, the serious nature of his crimes and their effect on the community. Nevertheless, defendant, who was sentenced as a second felony offender, has a significant criminal history that spans his adult life, for which he has previously served two prison terms. Given these circumstances, the serious nature of defendant’s crimes and his prior crimes involving drugs and multiple revocations of parole, we discern no abuse of discretion or any extraordinary circumstances that would warrant a reduction of the sentence in the interest of justice.”

The court added: “Defendant’s remaining claims, including his assertion that his pretrial and trial counsels provided ineffective assistance, have been reviewed and determined to be lacking in merit.”

Michael Anich covers Johnstown and Fulton County news. He can be reached at [email protected]

By Kerry Minor

Leave a Reply