PEORIA, Ill. –John M. Henigan, 36, of Peoria, Illinois, was sentenced on August 26, 2021, to just over thirteen years (158 months) in federal prison, to be followed by five years of supervised release, for distribution of heroin.
Henigan, who pleaded guilty to three counts of distribution of heroin last year, sold the drugs to a police informant in the fall of 2017. According to testimony at sentencing, investigators had learned Henigan was a significant heroin dealer in the Peoria area earlier that year. Through testimony and other evidence provided at sentencing, the district court also determined that Henigan caused the overdose death of a Washington, Illinois, man in April 2016.
According to court documents, after Henigan’s arrest in 2019, he admitted he was a heroin dealer and provided a list of various crack cocaine and heroin customers he sold drugs to throughout the years, some of whom have since overdosed and died. Evidence collected from Henigan’s phone showed that he also brokered sales of stolen firearms, in addition to his drug trafficking. Numerous images of guns and drugs were found on his phone. Evidence established that Henigan was not a drug user and earned hundreds of dollars a day dealing.
Henigan’s heroin trafficking dated back to 2015 and involved over 880 grams of heroin, as well as crack cocaine. During sentencing, U.S. District Court Judge Joe Billy McDade emphasized Henigan’s “conscious and deliberate” decision to traffic drugs “that kill people.” Judge McDade also described Henigan’s involvement with trafficking stolen firearms as unjustifiable.
“This case starkly demonstrates what drug dealers can expect when they choose to sell poisonous drugs into our communities,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Douglas J. Quivey. “Our office commends the Pekin Police Department’s dedication and perseverance in working up the chain to target high-level drug dealers in our community. Their collaboration with DEA is a successful example of leveraging the strengths of federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies against drug dealers who profit off other people’s serious and tragic additions.”
“The Pekin Police Department appreciates the working relationship that we have with the DOJ,” said Pekin Police Chief John Dossey. “This case is a clear example of ‘team work’ between local and federal agencies in an effort to make a difference not only in our community, but in society as a whole. I would like to recognize the Pekin detectives who worked tirelessly on this matter solely to better our community. I would also like to thank the DOJ prosecution team who worked with our detectives to successfully prosecute this case to remove a dangerous individual from our streets.”
Henigan has remained in the custody of the U.S. Marshals since his arrest.
The Drug Enforcement Administration and Pekin Police Department investigated the case with the assistance of the Tazewell County Sheriff’s Office and Morton Police Department. Assistant U.S. Attorney Katherine Legge represented the government in the prosecution.