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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Eastern District of Oklahoma

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, November 29, 2018

Broken Arrow Woman Sentenced To 36 Months Probation For Misprision Of A Felony

MUSKOGEE, OKLAHOMA – The United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Oklahoma announced that Snaysha Russell, age 27, of Broken Arrow, Oklahoma, was sentenced to 36 months’ probation for Misprision Of A Felony, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 4. The charges arose from an investigation by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (“ATF”).

The Indictment alleged that between April 26, 2017 and June 20, 2017, within the Eastern District of Oklahoma, the defendant, having knowledge of the actual commission of an Arson, a felony cognizable by a court of the United States, concealed it by disposing of evidence related to the Arson, and did not as soon as possible make it known to a judge or other person in civil or military authority under the United States.

“On April 26, 2017, Matthew Evan Smith committed Arson which caused the destruction of the Sherwin Williams store. Ms. Russell, who was in a relationship with Smith at the time, knew about the Arson and the existence of evidence that Smith had committed the Arson. She assisted Smith in his disposal of evidence, including paint equipment, ladders, and other Sherwin Williams merchandise stolen by Smith at the time he committed the Arson,” United States Attorney Brian J. Kuester said. “Fortunately Ms. Russell’s conduct did not prevent the apprehension and prosecution of Matthew Smith, although it did undoubtedly delay it. Thankfully the determination of the ATF Agents and members of this office overcame her efforts to conceal Smith’s criminal acts.” 

Matthew Smith was sentenced to five years’ imprisonment and three years’ supervised release on October 16, 2018 for the April 26, 2017 Arson. Several agencies were involved in the Arson investigation, including Tahlequah Police and Fire Departments, the Broken Arrow Police Department, the Oklahoma State Fire Marshal, the Cherokee County Sherriff’s Office, and the ATF. 

The Honorable Ronald A. White, U.S. District Judge in the United States District Court for the Eastern District of Oklahoma, in Muskogee, presided over the hearing. Assistant United States Attorney Dean Burris represented the United States.

Topic(s): 
Disaster Fraud
False Claims Act
Updated November 29, 2018