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Former pro skateboarder Fabian Alomar was spared the worst-case scenario of a looming third-strike conviction late last month in California Superior Court as friends and clergy rallied to his support.
Alomar was arrested last May in Hollywood, Calif., on possession charges for "a little bit of weed," according to friend, actor/model Tatiana Javorsky, who spearheaded a months-long effort to persuade the court that the 39-year-old working actor had turned his life around and didn't deserve a sentence of 26 years-to-life. Thanks to help from friends and clergy, he got a much lighter 18-month sentence.
"While dealing with a low point [in his career], he had a little weed on him," Javorsky told ESPN.com via email. "He was skating down Hollywood Blvd, and got stopped for skating on the [Hollywood Walk of Fame] stars, and [the cops] searched him. Because he was on parole, this [crime] just became massive real quick. While on the inside, he had a controlled substance on him, [adding] another strike."
"I ended up getting help... from [Diamond Supply Co.'s] Nick Tershay," Javorsky added. "None of this would have happened without Nick. He stepped up during the craziest times. [He] didn't want Fabian to learn his lesson with a life sentence."
The next round of support came from DGK founder Stevie Williams, who printed up and sold "Free Fabes" T-shirts, and donated the proceeds to help cover Alomar's mounting legal bills.
"We've been friends for over ten years," Williams told ESPN.com. "We've been on a couple tours together. Fabian's a big homie to me and big influence on my career, especially my younger years. He hasn't always made the best choices but he definitely has my support and the support of a lot of the industry."
As Alomar's sentencing date loomed, Javorsky recruited Rev. Dr. R. Scott Colglazier of the First Congregational Church of Los Angeles, a place that a young Alomar used to frequent to escape the gang and crime culture he was born into.
"I am well aware of [Alomar's] mistakes, but I also see in this young man great potential and I wanted to come to the court... to simply highlight that," Colglazier told presiding Commissioner Martin Gladstein at the San Fernando Courthouse in Los Angeles. "He is a very bright man, a creative man, a very talented man, an artistic man, and I think he still has much to give society. And so I still hope that if there is any room for leniency, I hope that can happen."
"[The court] lessened the charge... struck the [third] strike... [and Fabian got] three years at 50 percent," Javorsky said. "So basically, he will be out in 18 months."
Alomar did not make a statement during his December 21 sentencing hearing.
In a February 2010 interview, he said, "If you feel yourself going down the wrong path, try to snap yourself out of it because you don't realize what you got until it's all taken away."