News and Press Releases

Austin, Texas Man Receives Life in Prison
Sentence Imposed for Conspiracy to Distribute Marijuana and Aiding
and Abetting the Killing of a Law Enforcement Officer to Avoid
Apprehension and Prosecution for Conspiracy to Distribute Marijuana

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 16, 2010

Memphis, TN - United States Chief District Court Judge Jon P. McCalla sentenced Orlando GARCIA, 23, of Austin, Texas, to life in prison for conspiracy to distribute marijuana and aiding and abetting the killing of a law enforcement officer to avoid apprehension and prosecution for conspiracy to distribute marijuana, announced Edward L. Stanton, III, United States Attorney for the Western District of Tennessee.

GARCIA was indicted in April of 2009, in a four count indictment, with GARCIA pleading guilty in August of 2010, to two counts, specifically, conspiracy to distribute marijuana, in violation of Title 21, United States Code, Section 846; and aiding and abetting the killing of a law enforcement officer to avoid apprehension and prosecution for conspiracy to distribute marijuana, in violation of Title 21, United States Code, Section 848(e)(1)(B), and Title 18, United States Code, Section 2.

Testimony and evidence presented during GARCIA’s sentencing hearing, showed that in early January, 2007, GARCIA and others planned to travel to Tennessee from Austin, Texas, to distribute marijuana. After obtaining firearms and marijuana, GARCIA and another individual traveled to Tennessee in order to establish a drug distribution network. During the trip from Texas, the individual stated to GARCIA that if they were stopped by the law they might have to “do him.” Once in Tennessee, GARCIA and the individual traveled to Nashville, where they began to distribute the Marijuana. After a few days, they traveled back to Memphis, where they conducted several drug transactions. On their return trip back to Nashville, Tennessee Highway Patrol Officer Calvin Jenks stopped GARCIA for speeding on Highway 14 in Tipton County. During the encounter with GARCIA and the individual, the individual shot and killed Trooper Jenks. After the shooting, GARCIA and the individual fled the scene but were apprehended a short time later in a local motel in Nashville. During the investigation, law enforcement officers were able to recover two firearms that were in the possession of GARCIA and the individual during the killing of Trooper Jenks.

United States Attorney Edward L. Stanton, III stated: "The successful prosecution of Orlando Garcia has been a priority for this office ever since the tragic and senseless killing of Trooper Calvin Jenks on January 6, 2007. I want to thank all the federal, state, and local law enforcement authorities who assisted on this prosecution. This case demonstrates the importance of continuing this office's strong relationship with state prosecutors and law enforcement in West Tennessee."

The investigation was handled by Tennessee Bureau of Investigation, Drug Enforcement Administration, (DEA), Alcohol Tobacco and Firearms, (ATF), Tipton County Sheriff’s Department, Metro-Nashville Police Department, Brownsville Police Department, Tennessee Highway Patrol, (THP), Austin, Texas, Police Department, Covington Police Department and the 25th Judicial District Attorney's Office. Assistant United States Attorney Jerry R. Kitchen handled the case for the government.

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