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Press Release

Man Pleads Guilty to Possessing Firearms in Furtherance of Drug Trafficking Crimes

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

St. Louis, MO – Savon Durphey, a/k/a “JRod,” 25, of St. Louis, pled guilty to two counts of possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime.  He appeared in federal court this morning before U.S. District Judge Catherine D. Perry who accepted his plea and set sentencing for July 11, 2019.

According to court documents, on or about October 28, 2016, St. Ann Police attempted to stop a vehicle for speeding. The vehicle failed to stop, and the passenger threw an object from the window.  Police retrieved the item and discovered it to be a plastic bag containing approximately 145 capsules.  Laboratory tests later confirmed that the capsules contained fentanyl, a dangerous controlled substance. Durphey, the driver of the vehicle, later admitted that he had handed the fentanyl to his 17-year-old passenger and instructed her to throw it out the window. Durphey was discovered to be in possession of a loaded .40 caliber handgun. 

On or about March 10, 2017, Durphey again fled from law enforcement; this time, the Ferguson Police Department and the Major Case Squad, who attempted to stop his vehicle. Durphey fled until his vehicle struck a fence and became immobile.  Police once again found drugs in Durphey’s vehicle, along with a loaded .45 caliber handgun.  Durphey admitted that he was a drug dealer, claiming that he made approximately $800 per day selling drugs. 

Durphey faces a mandatory minimum sentence of ten years in prison, and a maximum sentence of life, along with a possible fine of not more than a $250,000.  He could receive both a prison sentence and a fine.  In determining the actual sentences, a Judge is required to consider the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines, which provide recommended sentencing ranges.

This case was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration, the St. Ann Police Department, and the Ferguson Police Department.

Updated March 25, 2019

Drug Trafficking
Firearms Offenses