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Press Release

South Carolina Woman Who Coordinated Drug Deals With Prison Inmate Pleads Guilty To Conspiracy To Distribute Methamphetamine

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

Jacksonville, Florida – United States Attorney Roger B. Handberg announces that Evin Rae Davenport (32, Greenwood, South Carolina) today pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute, and possess with the intent to distribute, 500 grams or more of a mixture and substance containing a detectable amount of methamphetamine.  Davenport’s co-defendant, Zachariah Luke, pleaded guilty to the same charge on August 16, 2023. Both Davenport and Luke face minimum mandatory terms of 10 years, up to life, in federal prison. 

According to Davenport’s plea agreement, in November 2021, Luke was serving a prison sentence in South Carolina. Using contraband cellphones, Luke communicated with Davenport who assisted him in acquiring and selling illegal drugs on the street. Receiving direction from Luke, Davenport delivered drugs three times to a Florida-based drug dealer, including approximately one kilogram of methamphetamine that she supplied to him outside of a department store in South Carolina.

Once Davenport delivered the kilogram of methamphetamine, the dealer returned to Florida. In St. Augustine, Florida, a deputy observed a traffic offense and signaled the dealer to pull over. The dealer initially appeared to be looking for a place to stop, but instead accelerated and raced down the streets of a residential neighborhood. A police helicopter tracked the speeding car, and the pilot observed an object being thrown from the car and directed another deputy to that specific location. Following the directions of the pilot, the deputy found a backpack on the side of the road.  Inside, the deputy found approximately 985.6 grams of crystal methamphetamine that laboratory testing would later show was 100% pure.

After attempting to dispose of the drugs, the dealer continued to drive, but eventually reached a dead end. He then abandoned the car to hide in a nearby wooded area but was located and arrested. After that arrest, correctional officers in South Carolina seized multiple cellphones from Luke, which he was prohibited from possessing in prison. Investigators searched those phones and recovered text communications with both Davenport and the Florida-based dealer, concerning when, where, and from whom drugs were to be supplied and delivered.

This case was investigated by the St. Johns County Sheriff’s Office, the Drug Enforcement Administration, the South Carolina Department of Corrections, the Aiken County Sheriff’s Office, the Aiken Department of Public Safety, the North Augusta Department of Public Safety, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Michael J. Coolican. 

Updated September 13, 2023

Drug Trafficking