News and Press Releases

South Burlington Woman Sentenced to 30 Months in Federal Prison for Selling Heroin

January 15, 2013

Burlington, VT – The Office of the United States Attorney for the District of Vermont, stated that on January 15, 2013, Maria Hunton, 23, was sentenced to serve 30 months in federal prison after she pled guilty to conspiring to distribute heroin. Chief U.S. District Court Judge Christina Reiss also ordered Hunton, who is from South Burlington, Vermont, to serve four years of supervised release following her prison term.

Hunton faced a prison sentence of up to 20 years. Judge Reiss found that Hunton's recommended prison term under the federal Sentencing Guidelines was between 57 and 71 months. In sentencing Hunton to a term of imprisonment below that range, Judge Reiss considered the defendant's lack of criminal record and addiction to heroin, among other factors. Judge Reiss also emphasized the grave harm caused to the community by the sale of heroin. 

According to court records, from 2011 until their arrests in May of 2012, Hunton and her then boyfriend, Ryan Orvis, sold large amounts of controlled substances from Orvis' residence at 60 Proctor Avenue in South Burlington, Vermont. Hunton dealt mostly in heroin, while Orvis dealt primarily in cocaine and cocaine base. Orvis also rented rooms in the residence to other individuals who sold drugs from the house. Orvis has plead guilty to conspiring to distribute cocaine and is scheduled to be sentenced before Judge Reiss on January 17, 2013 in Rutland.

This case was investigated by the Burlington Police Department, the South Burlington Police Department, and the Drug Enforcement Administration. The United States Attorney, Tristram J. Coffin, commends these agencies for their joint efforts. The prosecutor is Assistant United States Attorney Timothy C. Doherty, Jr. The defendant is represented by attorney Nancy Waples.

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