4 years for dealing heroin, meth

A Juneau man was sentenced to four years in prison for dealing small quantities of methamphetamine and heroin to a confidential informant last February.


Thirty-three-year-old Ernie J. Tullis received the four-year “flat” sentence — meaning there’s no suspended jail time or probation required — in Juneau Superior Court before Judge Philip Pallenberg on Thursday.

Assistant District Attorney Angie Kemp said Tullis sold one gram of meth to the informant on one occasion, and on another occasion sold the same informant two-tenths of a gram of heroin.

The informant in this case is the same one that helped the Juneau Police Department catch about a dozen other methamphetamine and heroin dealers in Juneau. The majority of those defendants were indicted by a grand jury this summer. About half the cases have been closed out in court, and the other half are still pending.

Tullis was indicted alongside two other defendants in June on two felony drug misconduct charges. He pleaded guilty to one of the counts — third-degree drug misconduct — and prosecutors dropped the other count in exchange for his plea.

Third-degree drug misconduct is class ‘B’ felony that can carry up to 10 years in jail. It has a four to seven year presumptive sentencing range since Tullis has one prior felony conviction, for fourth-degree drug misconduct for selling marijuana in 2007.

Tullis declined to address the court when given the chance on Thursday. His attorney, Whitney Power of the Office of Public Advocacy, told the judge her client has struggled with substance abuse and that he wants to receive treatment while incarcerated.

Pallenberg noted that Tullis was clearly not a “big player” in drug trafficking and that he appeared to be a “low-level user” selling drugs to finance his addiction.

“But that doesn’t make it OK to deal drugs,” Pallenberg said.

• Contact reporter Emily Russo Miller at 523-2263 or at emily.miller@juneauempire.com.


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