Niskayuna man pleads guilty in pot operation case

From left, Dean M. Robbins, Conor Robbins and Dean V. Robbins IIIFrom left, Dean M. Robbins, Conor Robbins and Dean V. Robbins III

By Steven Cook

A town man who was arrested along with his two sons in connection with a marijuana operation that included more than 600 plants will receive probation, prosecutors say.

Dean V. Robbins III, 59, of Oxford Way, on Thursday pleaded guilty in Schenectady County Court to one count of first-degree criminal possession of marijuana, a felony.

He also agreed to forfeit more than $32,000 in cash seized from the home.

He is to receive a total of five years of probation at his March sentencing, as well as give up the cash.

In May, state police also charged two of Robbins’ sons, Dean M. Robbins, 25, and Conor J. Robbins, 21. Both faced a similar first-degree criminal possession of marijuana.

According to the Schenectady County Court proceedings in the father’s case Thursday, the two sons are expected to plead guilty to misdemeanor charges at some point soon in Niskayuna Town Court. Their cases, however, remain pending.

In Schenectady County Court Thursday, Judge Matthew Sypniewski went through routine questioning, including asking the father if he was being pressured to plead guilty. The judge specifically referenced the potential outcome of his sons’ cases in his questioning.

Robbins indicated that he was not being pressured to plead guilty.

State police charged the three after a May 26 raid on the Oxford Way home in Niskayuna’s Avon Crest neighborhood owned by Dean V. Robbins III.

Police seized more than 600 marijuana plants, 10 pounds of processed marijuana and $32,000 in cash, authorities said.
State police had been investigating the home for a couple months, police said at the time.

State police provided a picture showing two lines of full trays with dozens of plants.

Prosecutor Eamonn Neary, of the Schenectady County District Attorney’s Office, said prosecutors felt the resolution to the father’s case is appropriate given a lack of criminal history and that the father owned the home.

If he violates probation, he could face up to the maximum sentence of 5 years, 6 months in state prison, Neary said.
His attorney, William Roberts, could not be reached for comment.

Neary declined to comment on the sons’ possible resolutions as their cases remain pending.

Attorney Joseph Ahearn, who represents both Robbins sons, also declined to comment later Thursday.

Reach Gazette reporter Steven Cook at 395-3122, scook@dailygazette.net or @ByStevenCook on Twitter.