Teen facing jail gets chance to graduate

LISBON – An Alliance teen was given the opportunity to finish high school before serving jail time for carrying a concealed weapon and underage consumption.

In a plea deal on Monday in Columbiana County Municipal Court, Dyron L. Hancock, 18, Patterson Street, Alliance pleaded no contest to carrying a concealed weapon, which was amended from a felony to a misdemeanor.

According to court documents, Hancock had been the rear seat passenger in a vehicle traveling west on U.S. Route 62 near Idaho Avenue at 1:43 a.m. on Feb. 17. Just prior to that time, at 1:37 a.m. Salem police had been sent to the Foxes Den regarding shots fired from a vehicle, which matched the description of the one Hancock was riding in. No one was injured in the shooting incident.

The gun was reportedly found near Hancock and the driver, Angel Makeda Jackson, 26, South Arch Street, Alliance, had denied previously in court knowing about the gun. She also said she had been asked by the teen, who was her sister’s ex-boyfriend’s little brother, for a ride when she was leaving the Foxes Den in Salem for Alliance. She was also allowed to plead to a misdemeanor carrying a concealed weapon charge, fined $250 and given credit for two days served in jail.

When he was searching the vehicle, Perry Township Patrolman Donald Paulin reportedly found a loaded and locked 22-caliber handgun under a seat. In court on Monday, Paulin told Judge Mark Frost the gun smelled as if it had been recently fired. It also was missing a piece, Paulin said, forcing the person shooting it to manually eject the casing.

Hancock was fined $550 and sentenced to 177 remaining days in jail with credit for three days already served. He does not report to jail until June 7, giving him time to complete his senior year of school. A review hearing was set for July 1.

Frost noted allowing the teen to finish high school would also force him to stay out of trouble, even through all the temptations of graduation parties. If he can stay out of trouble, Frost said he would consider placing him on probation at the July review hearing.

Frost told Hancock to graduate, stay out of trouble and listen to his mother, who was in the courtroom to support him.

“Listen to this young lady,” Frost said. “Your mother knows more than you think she knows.”