News and Press Releases

Johnstown Woman Pleads Guilty To Federal Drug, Gun Charges

October 17 , 2011

JOHNSTOWN, Pa. - A resident of Johnstown, Pa., pleaded guilty in federal court to charges of violating federal narcotics and firearms laws, United States Attorney David J. Hickton announced today.

Desalynn L. Coleman, 30, pleaded guilty to two counts before United States District Judge Kim R. Gibson.

In connection with the guilty plea, the court was advised that from April 28, 2009, to March 8, 2010, Coleman conspired to distribute 100 grams or more of heroin, and on Feb. 23, 2010, after being convicted in 2009 in Cambria County, Pa., of receiving stolen property, she unlawfully possessed a Ruger revolver.  Federal law prohibits persons who have been convicted of a misdemeanor crime punishable by imprisonment for more than two years from possessing ammunition or firearms.  Receiving stolen property is such a crime.

Judge Gibson scheduled sentencing for Feb. 23, 2012, at 10:30 a.m.  The law provides for a total sentence of 50 years in prison, a fine of $2,250,000, or both.  Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the actual sentence imposed is based upon the seriousness of the offenses and the criminal history of the defendant.

Assistant United States Attorney John J. Valkovci, Jr., is prosecuting this case on behalf of the government.

The Laurel Highlands Resident Agency of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Cambria County Drug Task Force and the Johnstown Police Department conducted the investigation that led to the prosecution of Coleman.

According to Mr. Hickton, Coleman is being prosecuted as part of Project Safe Neighborhoods, a collaborative effort by federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies, prosecutors, and communities to prevent, deter, and prosecute gun crime.

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