Interior Man Indicted for Distributing a Controlled Substance in a School Zone
Assistant United States Attorney
United States Attorney Brendan V. Johnson announced that an Interior, South Dakota, man has been indicted by a federal grand jury for distributing more than 5 grams of marijuana within 1,000 feet of Little Wound School at Kyle, South Dakota, on March 5, 2012.
Gerald Baker, Sr., age 27, was indicted by a federal grand jury on July 24, 2012, for Distribution of a Controlled Substance in a School Zone. Baker appeared before United States Magistrate Judge Veronica L. Duffy on September 10, 2012, and pled not guilty to the indictment. The maximum penalty upon conviction is 5 years of imprisonment and a $250,000 fine. The charge is merely an accusation, and Baker is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.
The charge is a result of Operation Eagle Eye, a controlled substances investigation conducted by the Northern Plains Safe Trails Drug Enforcement Task Force, whose member agencies include the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Bureau of Indian Affairs, the South Dakota Division of Criminal Investigation, the South Dakota Highway Patrol, the Pierre Police Department, and the Oglala Sioux Tribe – Department of Public Safety. In addition to Task Force members, other agencies assisting were the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives, the Martin Police Department, the U.S. Marshal's Service, the Drug Enforcement Administration, and the Jackson County Sheriff’s Office. Assistant United States Attorney Ted L. McBride is prosecuting the case.
Baker was remanded to the custody of the United States Marshal. A trial date has been set for November 13, 2012.