SOMERSET, Pa. — A western Pennsylvania man tried to persuade a judge to give him less prison time for four incidents in which he threatened people with guns during drug deals by arguing that he was harming only “bad people just like me.”

The Daily American of Somerset reports Somerset County Judge John Cascio wasn’t persuaded and sentenced 30-year-old James Vance-Ivey Jr. to 18 months to five years in prison for endangerment, threat and drug charges on Thursday.

Cascio explained to Vance-Ivey that “even people with criminal records have rights and have the right to be protected by the law and by the Constitution.”

The defendant had argued that his actions weren’t justified, but told the judge he wasn’t targeting “a workin’ man or some law-abiding citizen. These are all bad people, just like me.”

Augusta and Waterville news

Get news and events from your towns in your inbox every Friday.

  • This field is for validation purposes and should be left unchanged.