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Press Release

New Orleans Man Sentenced for Federal Gun and Drug Offenses

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

NEW ORLEANS, LOUISIANA – DATAYNA HOWARD (“HOWARD”), age 22, of New Orleans, was sentenced on June 5, 2024 by U.S. District Judge Ivan L.R. Lemelle to 122 months in prison, followed by 3 years of supervised release, along with a $400 mandatory special assessment fee, after previously pleading guilty to two counts of possession with intent to distribute controlled substances, in violation of Title 21, United States Code, Sections 841(a)(1), 841(b)(1)(C), and 841(b)(1)(D), and two counts of possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 924(c).

According to court documents, on January 19, 2022, HOWARD was arrested at the Oakwood Shopping Center in Gretna, Louisiana, in possession of fentanyl, marijuana, drug trafficking supplies, and two loaded handguns.  On June 8, 2023, law enforcement executed a search warrant at HOWARD’s residence in New Orleans.  HOWARD possessed over 700 tapentadol pills, marijuana, drug trafficking supplies, three handguns, and additional ammunition.

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and gun violence, and to make our neighborhoods safer for everyone.  On May 26, 2021, the Department launched a violent crime reduction strategy strengthening PSN based on these core principles: fostering trust and legitimacy in our communities, supporting community-based organizations that help prevent violence from occurring in the first place, setting focused and strategic enforcement priorities, and measuring the results.

This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Jefferson Parish Sheriff’s Office, and the New Orleans Police Department. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney David Berman of the Violent Crime Unit.


Shane M. Jones

Public Information Officer

United States Attorney’s Office, Eastern District of Louisiana

United States Department of Justice

Updated June 7, 2024

Project Safe Neighborhoods