News and Press Releases

final of five defendants enters guilty plea to home invasion robbery conspiracy

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
November 26, 2013

St. Louis, MO – JAMES CLARK, Saint Louis, Missouri, entered his guilty plea today before the Honorable Catherine D. Perry.  Clark pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute cocaine and one count of possession of a firearm in furtherance of drug trafficking.  Clark is the last of five defendants to plead guilty in connection with an April 2013 conspiracy in which the five men agreed to, among other things, arm themselves, make entry into a house located in south Saint Louis City and rob between 22 and 30 kilograms of cocaine from inside the residence. 

In preparation for the robbery, Clark possessed a Glock make, Model 19, nine millimeter caliber pistol with an extended magazine loaded with 33 rounds of ammunition.  Co-defendant Tray Ferguson armed himself with a Springfield Armory make, Model XD, .45 caliber pistol loaded with 14 rounds of ammunition; an additional .45 caliber magazine loaded with 13 rounds of ammunition; and a Glock make, Model 22, .40 caliber pistol with an extended magazine loaded with 21 rounds of ammunition.  Co-defendant Ricky Turner possessed a Colt, Model Python, .357 caliber revolver; 15 rounds of ammunition; and a loaded Hi Point, Model C9, nine millimeter caliber pistol.

In addition to Clark’s guilty plea this morning, co-defendant TRAY FERGUSON, entered his guilty plea on July 31, 2013, to one count of conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute over five kilograms of cocaine and one count of possession of firearms in furtherance of drug trafficking.  Co-defendant Tramaine Ellis, pleaded guilty on October 10, 2013, to one count of conspiracy to possess firearms in furtherance of drug trafficking.  Co-defendant Ricky Turner, pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute cocaine and one count of possession of a firearm in furtherance of drug trafficking on November 14, 2013.  Co-defendant Ahmad Britton, entered his guilty plea on November 21, 2013, to distribution of more than 28 grams of cocaine base (crack); conspiracy to possess with the intent to distribute over five kilograms of cocaine and conspiracy to possess firearms in furtherance of drug trafficking.     

Each defendant faces maximum possible penalties ranging from 20 years to life imprisonment.  Sentencing for each will occur in early 2014.  In determining the actual sentences, a judge is required to consider the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines, which provide recommended sentencing ranges.  Sentencings have been set as follows:  Ferguson: December 18, 2013; Ellis: January 2, 2014; Britton: February 11, 2014; Turner: February 6, 2014; and Clark: March 4, 2014.

The guilty plea of each defendant comes as a result of the proactive investigation initiated by the United States Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives in the Spring of 2013 to reduce violent crime within the City of Saint Louis. 

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