PITTSFIELD — A city man who was arrested on cocaine possession charges while awaiting sentencing in a prior drug case has been sentenced to up to five years in prison.
Lemarr S. Talley, 32, who had planned to represent himself at trial, instead pleaded guilty on Monday in Berkshire Superior Court.
A certified paralegal, Talley had stated his intent to represent himself at his Dec. 22 arraignment on the possession charge.
Talley was arrested Nov. 18 after police executing a search warrant recovered about 4.4 grams of packaged crack cocaine hidden in his socks.
At the time, he was out on recognizance during a stay of sentencing on charges of cocaine trafficking and heroin possession, to which he pleaded guilty in September.
In that case, Talley was found with nearly 27 grams of cocaine and 91 bags of heroin in his car during the execution of a search warrant on July 29, 2014.
He was sentenced to 2 1/2 to 3 years in state prison on those charges by Judge John Agostini.
Talley pleaded guilty on Monday to a lone charge of possession of cocaine with intent to distribute (second offense). He was sentenced by Agostini to 3 1/2 to 5 years in state prison, to be served concurrently with the previous sentence.
Assistant Berkshire District Attorney Robert Kinzer acknowledged Talley's most recent case didn't involve a large amount of drugs, but he said the sentencing recommendation was based, in part, on Talley's criminal record, which includes multiple drug convictions.
"They're starting to add up," Kinzer said.
Talley addressed the court and apologized for his actions and said he hopes to further his education and eventually advocate for people in the court system.
"If I'm going to stay on the straight and narrow, I can't go back to those ways," Talley said.
Talley will serve his sentence at the Massachusetts Correctional Institution at Cedar Junction.
The investigation was conducted by members of the Pittsfield and Dalton police departments, the Berkshire County Sheriff's Office and state troopers assigned to the District Attorney's Office and members of the Berkshire County Law Enforcement Task Force.