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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, April 18, 2019

Glendive man sentenced to 12 years in prison for meth, firearm

BILLINGS—A Glendive man who admitted drug and firearm crimes after law enforcement found more than a pound of methamphetamine in his hotel room was sentenced on Tuesday to 12 years in prison and to five years of supervised release, said U.S. Attorney Kurt Alme.

John Allen Wagner, 40, pleaded guilty in November to possession with intent to distribute meth and to possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime.

U.S. District Judge Susan P. Watters presided.

Law enforcement arrested Wagner after Billings Police officers responded to a complaint call at a downtown Billings hotel on April 21, 2018. When no one answered the door at the room referred to in the complaint, a staff member entered followed by the officers, who saw drug paraphernalia. About that time, Wagner, who was staying in the room, came walking down the hall. Officers asked Wagner to stop, but he ran. Officers chased and eventually caught Wagner. After getting a search warrant, law enforcement found more than 500 grams, or a little more than pound, of meth in Wagner’s hotel room and a handgun in his vehicle. A pound of meth is the equivalent of about 3,624 doses.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Colin Rubich prosecuted the case, which was investigated by FBI task force.

The case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), which is the centerpiece of the Department of Justice’s violent crime reduction efforts.  PSN is an evidence-based program proven to be effective at reducing violent crime. Through PSN, a broad spectrum of stakeholders work together to identify the most pressing violent crime problems in the community and develop comprehensive solutions to address them. As part of this strategy, PSN focuses enforcement efforts on the most violent offenders and partners with locally based prevention and reentry programs for lasting reductions in crime.

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Topic(s): 
Project Safe Neighborhoods
Component(s): 
Contact: 
Clair Johnson Howard Public Information Officer 406-247-4623
Updated April 18, 2019