Baltimore Career Offender Sentenced to 17 ½ Years in Prison for Possession of a Gun in Furtherance of Drug Trafficking

January 6, 2011

Baltimore, Maryland - U.S. District Judge William D. Quarles, Jr., sentenced Donta Spriggs, age 30, of Baltimore, Maryland, today to 210 months in prison followed by five years of supervised release for possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime.

The sentence was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein; Special Agent in Charge Ava Cooper-Davis of the Drug Enforcement Administration - Washington Field Division; Baltimore City State’s Attorney Gregg Bernstein; and Baltimore Police Commissioner Frederick H. Bealefeld III.

According to Spriggs’ guilty plea, on February 18, 2010 a Baltimore City Police officer responded to a 911 call reporting an armed person in a Jeep in the 1700 block of East Preston Street. Upon arrival in the block, the officer located the Jeep vehicle that was the subject of the 911 call and ran the vehicle’s registration and located a photo of the registered owner. The officer saw Donta Spriggs, who was the owner of the vehicle, across the street and approached him, asking if the he was owner of the Jeep that was parked by the officer’s marked vehicle. Spriggs acknowledged that he was the owner of the Jeep. The officer told Spriggs that he had received a call regarding a handgun in the vehicle. Spriggs gave the officer permission to search the vehicle and provided the officer with the keys. Spriggs was also searched. The officer recovered an Iver Johnson revolver from Spriggs’ waistband and a bag containing 35 vials of cocaine base from Spriggs’ pants pocket.

United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein commended the DEA, Baltimore Police Department and the Baltimore City State’s Attorney’s Office for their work in this investigation and prosecution. Mr. Rosenstein thanked Special Assistant United States Attorney Christine Celeste, a cross-designated Baltimore City Assistant State’s Attorney, who prosecuted the case.

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