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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Northern District of Georgia

Thursday, March 27, 2014

Former Newton County Deputy Sheriff Sentenced

ATLANTA - Darrell Mathis has been sentenced to five years in federal prison for possessing a firearm during a drug transaction.

“Mathis abandoned his oath as a deputy sheriff, and chose the life of a drug dealer,” said United States Attorney Sally Quillian Yates. “His decision to violate the law also violated the trust the public places in law enforcement.  Mathis will have the next five years in prison to consider his conduct.”

J. Britt Johnson, Special Agent in Charge, FBI Atlanta Field Office, stated: “Today’s sentencing of former Deputy Mathis should serve notice that, while noting that the vast majority of those who serve within the criminal justice system are faithful to their oaths, the FBI will make those individuals who do violate their sworn oaths as law enforcement officers a priority for investigation and prosecution.”

According to United States Attorney Yates, the charges and other information presented in court: In April 2013, it came to the attention of the FBI that Darrell Mathis, a deputy sheriff with the Newton County Sheriff’s Office, was distributing marijuana.  From May through September 2013, Mathis sold various quantities of marijuana to a confidential source who was working with the FBI, as well as to an undercover FBI agent.  On at least two occasions, Mathis sold marijuana from his marked patrol vehicle while wearing his Newton County Sheriff’s Office uniform. 

On August 8, 2013, Mathis sold one pound of marijuana to an undercover FBI agent.  Following that sale, Mathis and the undercover FBI agent went to meet with another undercover FBI agent to discuss the sale of additional quantities of marijuana.  Mathis brought his NCSO badge and his firearm to the meeting. Mathis told the undercover agent that he was bringing his firearm to the meeting “just in case.”  During the meeting, Mathis told the second undercover FBI agent, who Mathis believed to be a marijuana and cocaine trafficker, that he was a police officer, pulled out his badge, and stated, “Don't worry, I'm on your side.” Mathis was arrested on September 19, 2013, when he met with the undercover FBI agent while in possession of one pound of marijuana.

Mathis, 41, of Lithonia, Ga., has been sentenced to five years in prison to be followed by two years of supervised release.  Mathis was convicted on the charge on December 6, 2013, after he pleaded guilty.

This case is being investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation.

Assistant United States Attorney Jamie L. Mickelson prosecuted the case.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office in Atlanta recommends parents and children learn about the dangers of drugs at the following web site: www.justthinktwice.com.

For further information please contact the U.S. Attorney’s Public Affairs Office at USAGAN.PressEmails@usdoj.gov or (404) 581-6016.  The Internet address for the home page for the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Georgia Atlanta Division is http://www.justice.gov/usao/gan/.

Updated April 8, 2015