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Press Release

New Haven Man Sentenced to Prison for Crack Cocaine Distribution and Ammunition Possession Offenses

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Connecticut

Vanessa Roberts Avery, United States Attorney for the District of Connecticut, announced that BRIAN WARD, 30, of New Haven, was sentenced today by U.S. District Judge Alvin W. Thompson in Hartford to 37 months of imprisonment, followed by three years of supervised release, for narcotics distribution and ammunition possession offenses.

According to court documents and statements made in court, on July 21, 2021, law enforcement arrested Ward’s associate, Zaquawn Arrington, on a federal criminal complaint at Arrington’s New Haven residence.  Ward used a bedroom at Arrington’s residence and was present at the time of Arrington’s arrest.  A search of the residence revealed crack cocaine, a digital scale, and $2,075 in cash.  During the search, investigators observed Ward throw a bag from the house.  The bag contained crack cocaine packaged for distribution.  Later that day, investigators conducted a court-authorized search of the residence and located in Ward’s bedroom a pistol box containing four ammunition magazines, and a box of 39 9mm rounds.

Ward was subsequently seen on surveillance video firing a gun at a group of individuals immediately after one of the individuals shot and killed his associate on August 8, 2021, in Hamden.

Ward’s criminal history includes state felony drug and assault offenses.  It is a violation of federal law for a person previously convicted of a felony offense to possess a firearm or ammunition that has moved in interstate or foreign commerce.

Ward has been detained since August 18, 2021.  On December 14, 2021, he pleaded guilty to one count of possession with intent to distribute cocaine base (“crack”), and one count of possession of ammunition by a felon.

Arrington was convicted of possession with intent to distribute cocaine base.

This investigation was conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s New Haven Safe Streets/Gang Task Force, the New Haven Police Department and the West Haven Police Department.  The Task Force includes members from the Connecticut State Police, Connecticut Department of Correction and the New Haven, Milford, East Haven and West Haven Police Departments.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney John T. Pierpont, Jr., through Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), the centerpiece of the Department of Justice’s violent crime reduction efforts.  PSN is an evidence-based program proven to be effective at reducing violent crime.  Through PSN, a broad spectrum of stakeholders work together to identify the most pressing violent crime problems in the community and develop comprehensive solutions to address them.  As part of this strategy, PSN focuses enforcement efforts on the most violent offenders and partners with locally based prevention and reentry programs for lasting reductions in crime.

Updated November 1, 2022

Project Safe Neighborhoods
Violent Crime
Drug Trafficking
Firearms Offenses