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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Columbia

Tuesday, November 7, 2017

District Man Sentenced to 10-Year Prison Term on Narcotics and Firearms Charges Relating to His Operation of an Open-Air Drug Market

Defendant Was on Supervised Release for Felony Offenses When Arrested

            WASHINGTON – Marques Henderson, 37, of Washington, D.C., was sentenced today to ten years in prison on narcotics and firearm offenses stemming from his operation of an open-air drug market in Southeast Washington, announced U.S. Attorney Jessie K. Liu, Andrew W. Vale, Assistant Director in Charge of the FBI’s Washington Field Office, and Peter Newsham, Chief of the Metropolitan Police Department (MPD).


            Henderson pled guilty in May 2017, in the U.S. District Court for the District of Columbia, to one count of unlawful distribution of cocaine base and using, carrying, and possessing a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking offense. He was sentenced by the Honorable Tanya S. Chutkan. Upon completion of his prison term, Henderson will be placed on five years of supervised release.


            The government’s evidence established that Henderson, known on the street as “DA BEAST,” was the subject of investigations by both the FBI and MPD and that he sold PCP and crack cocaine in the 300 block of Ridge Road SE with his base of operations at 359 Ridge Road. In the course of the investigation, law enforcement seized five firearms, numerous rounds of ammunition, distribution quantities of PCP and crack cocaine, and numerous types of drug paraphernalia.


            As part of his plea agreement, Henderson acknowledged selling PCP and crack cocaine to an MPD undercover officer on four separate occasions and having both PCP and crack cocaine on his person with a loaded firearm when arrested on June 20, 2016, by the FBI.


            At the time of his arrest, Henderson was on supervised release for three separate felony cases in the Superior Court of the District of Columbia. He now faces formal revocation of his supervise released and additional incarceration, separate from the above-referenced sentence, from the U.S. Parole Commission.


            In announcing the sentence, U.S. Attorney Liu, Assistant Director in Charge Vale, and Chief Newsham commended the work of the FBI/MPD Safe Streets Task Force in shutting down Henderson’s drug trafficking operation. They also acknowledged the efforts of those who worked on the case from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Columbia, including Assistant U.S. Attorneys Christopher Macchiaroli and Anthony Scarpelli of the Violent Crime and Narcotics Trafficking Section and Paralegal Specialist Candace Battle.

Drug Trafficking
Violent Crime
Press Release Number: 
Updated November 7, 2017