Former CFLer Jonathan Hefney sentenced to nine years in jail for trafficking cocaine

Following a guilty plea Jonathan Hefney has been sentenced to nine years behind bars.

Hefney played for the Winnipeg Blue Bombers, Calgary Stampeders and Montreal Alouettes during eight seasons in the CFL. He was named a league all-star twice (2009 and 2011).

The News and Observer in South Carolina has the details of the case:

Hefney pleaded guilty after he was charged by York County drug agents in 2017 with three counts of trafficking cocaine, police and court records show.

Matthew Hogge, 16th Circuit assistant Solicitor, said Hefney was arrested after York County drug agents made three controlled coccaine buys. One of the buys was for more than 50 grams of the illegal drug, Hogge said.

“This trafficking was of a substantial amount,” Hogge said.

Hefney had been recovering from a career-ending injury that ended his time in the CFL abruptly. In October of 2015, Hefney was carted off the field after a collision with the Ottawa Redblacks fullback Patrick Lavoie.

Hefney suffered three fractured vertebrae and nerve damage that left him with limited use of his arm. According to Hefney, he suffered an injury to the brachial plexus, which is a network of nerves that sends signals to your shoulder, arm and hand. Minor brachial plexus injuries are common in football and are known as stingers or burners while more severe cases can lead to paralysis and loss of function which is what happened to Hefney.

The Montreal Alouettes, for whom Hefney played when he was hurt, covered the cost of Hefney’s first surgery via insurance but their obligations ended a year after the injury. Hefney used a GoFundMe campaign to pay for the procedures.

The photo of the aftermath of his most recent surgery is yet another stark reminder of what CFL players go through – often without support from the teams or the league.

The 34-year-old Hefney had no prior criminal convictions.

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