U.S. District Judge Thomas Penfield Jackson made these remarks yesterday when he sentenced Mayor Barry:

Section 3553 (c) of Title 18, U.S.C., requires the court to state its reasons upon the record in open court for imposing a particular sentence. Of greatest significance to me in sentencing this defendant is the high public office he has at all relevant times occupied. He was at the time of his offense, the time of his conviction, and is now at {the} time of his sentencing, the elected head of government, as mayor, the chief public official and personage of the city of Washington, D.C., the capital of the United States.

His breach of public trust alone warrants an enhanced sentence. By his own unlawful conduct the defendant rendered himself beholden to, and thus vulnerable to influence from, anyone who had first-hand knowledge of it. Whether that vulnerability was ever exploited is immaterial for present purposes. Moreover, the prevalence of the public rumors of {the} defendant's frequent and conspicuous drug use -- never dispelled, and now unfortunately shown to have been true -- has given aid, comfort, and encouragement to the drug culture at large, and contributed to the anguish that illegal drugs have inflicted on this city in so many ways for so long. His prominence inspired others to emulate him and to behave as they believed he did. Having failed as the good example he might have been to the citizens of Washington, D.C. -- and, in particular, to the young who are so much more likely to respond to example than to admonition -- the defendant must now become an example of another kind.

There are, in addition, other aggravating circumstances to be taken into account. First, although the verdict represents the defendant's first conviction, and is of what some might call a minor crime, the court finds that the offense of which he stands convicted was neither his first nor his last such offense. Second, I find from the evidence that the defendant employed subterfuge and false testimony -- his own and that of others -- in an attempt to avoid exposure and prosecution altogether. The court concludes the defendant's conduct in that regard represented a willful attempt at obstruction of justice.

I am ignoring, for purposes of sentencing, what I perceive to have been the defendant's efforts, once prosecution had commenced, to induce the jury to disregard the law and the evidence. The jurors will have to answer to themselves and to their fellow citizens for the way in which they discharged their duty.

The cocaine the defendant used with Ms. {Doris} Crenshaw in November 1989 was procured from some third person. It is not unlikely that that person was someone like the 35-year-old small-time drug dealer who was convicted in this court and sentenced, in January, 1990, to a mandatory minimum prison term of 35 years without parole. It might also have been a person like the 22-year-old Howard University student who began serving a mandatory minimum sentence of 12 years, seven months, in July of 1989, also without parole, for distributing drugs on and around the university campus.

These people were, of course, part of the drug supply network. There would, however, be no people like them -- and also no drug crisis -- if there were no consumers to make a market for their illicit drugs. The defendant was such a consumer, not only in November of 1989, but on numerous occasions before and since. Proportionate justice would seem to call for some fairly comparable penalty for him.

I find, however, that there is evidence of mitigating circumstances operating in the defendant's favor, and I believe he is entitled to their benefit despite his persistence, until the moment of his sentencing, in a formal attitude of denial. He has admitted to being an alcoholic. I find, from the evidence I have heard and his attorney's judicial admission, as well as the defendant's belated acknowledgement, that he is also a compulsive user of cocaine. He is, thus, in a sense a victim as well as a perpetrator and deserving of as much compassion as anyone so afflicted, however he may come to it. It appears, moreover, that at the moment he is making significant and sustained progress at self-rehabilitation, and that he enjoys the support of his family, his true friends and his church as he endeavors to do so.

It is, therefore, this 26th day of October, 1990, ordered that the defendant, Marion S. Barry Jr., is hereby committed to the custody of the U.S. Bureau of Prisons for a term of six months, with a recommendation for drug treatment during his confinement, and fined the sum of $5,000, payable to the United States. The defendant shall also, as required by the Sentencing Reform Act of 1984, pay the cost of his confinement and post-release supervision to the United States. The defendant may remain at liberty on his personal recognizance until his place of confinement is designated, and shall then report voluntarily thereto as directed by the Bureau of Prisons. Upon his release from confinement, the defendant shall be placed on supervised release for a period of one year, subject to the standard conditions of probation promulgated by the Sentencing Commission, and upon the further conditions that he submit to periodic, unscheduled urinalysis and to drug treatment and/or aftercare when and as directed by the Probation Office; that he pay the fine hereby imposed within the period of supervised release; and that he pay a mandatory special assessment of $25; and it is further ordered that . . . the defendent is released on his personal recognizance, and, unless defendant otherwise requests, the execution of sentence is stayed . . . pending completion of proceedings on a timely appeal taken herefrom.