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Drug Court graduate who reoffended placed on probation

WAILUKU — A Lahaina man who entered drug treatment after being arrested was placed on four years’ probation for gun, drug and theft convictions.

Jayson Probst, 30, was warned that he would face a different sentence if he forgets lessons from his past and doesn’t comply with court requirements.

“As a Drug Court graduate who has committed new and very significant crimes, the next step is a prison sentence,” 2nd Circuit Judge Peter Cahill said in sentencing Probst on Thursday.

In two criminal cases, Probst had pleaded no contest to unauthorized control of a propelled vehicle, second-degree theft, possessing a loaded firearm on a public highway and third-degree promotion of a dangerous drug.

He was arrested after a traffic stop Aug. 7 when police reported finding a backpack containing drugs and a loaded 9 mm handgun with no serial number.

Probst also was charged with operating a vehicle that was stolen from Kapalua Ziplines on Oct. 28 and with the theft of a Hawaiian Electric Co. vehicle on March 27, 2020.

After spending nearly five months in jail, he was released on supervision in March to participate in drug treatment.

“I made a lot of mistakes in my life, things I’m not proud of,” he said in court. “I also learned a lot about myself.

“It’s a very humbling experience to be here today and have the support I have and to see the impact of my positive choices and negative ones. Sorry doesn’t cut it for the things I’ve done.”

Deputy Public Defender Zach Raidmae said Probst has family and friends who support him “even though he’s been down a dark path several times.”

Probst’s addiction to a mixture of methamphetamine and opiates “is a devastating and extremely powerful punch,” Raidmae said.

Judge Cahill, who followed a plea agreement in sentencing Probst to probation, noted the defendant had completed the residential drug treatment program.

Cahill said that while some people say relapse is a part of recovery, “that kind of a statement condones the criminal conduct that goes along with relapse.”

“We have to stop doing that,” he said. “Every time you take a hit on an illegal drug, you commit a crime because you obtained it.

“In this case, you went beyond that. I think there needs to be a mind reset on the way we look at it. We have to acknowledge there are crimes connected with it.”

Court records show Probst had burglary and theft charges dismissed when he completed the Maui Drug Court program of treatment and supervision in 2017.

“He’s now relapsed as a criminal and a pretty hardcore criminal,” Cahill said.

In addition to damaging a vehicle, Probst was found carrying weapons, Cahill said.

“What’s the excuse for that?” he said. “Why would you need that? It’s got to be connected somehow with committing crimes or using them in trade.”

Probst was ordered not to consume or possess alcohol or illegal drugs and to stay away from people using or possessing illegal substances. He was ordered to pay $10,837 in restitution to Kapalua Ziplines for damage to its Polaris all-terrain vehicle.

* Lila Fujimoto can be reached at lfujimoto@mauinews.com.

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