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Press Release

Tulsa Man Pleads Guilty to Drug and Firearms Charges

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of Oklahoma

A Tulsa man pleaded guilty in federal court to multiple drug offenses including distribution of methamphetamine and heroin, announced U.S. Attorney Trent Shores.

In a blind plea, Richard Howard Barnett III, 24, admitted to two counts of possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute; possession of heroin with intent to distribute; and two counts of possession of firearms in furtherance of drug trafficking crimes. U.S. District Judge Gregory K. Frizzell set Barnett’s sentencing for April 9, 2021.

“The Tulsa Police Narcotics Unit and DEA closed the door on Richard Barnett’s illicit drug trafficking operation,” said U.S. Attorney Trent Shores. “Combined with the advocacy of Assistant U.S. Attorney Joel-lyn McCormick, this law enforcement team successfully removed large quantities of meth and heroin from the illegal drug market.”

On Feb. 5, 2019, the Tulsa Police Department Special Investigations Division’s Narcotics Unit executed a probable cause warrant on Barnett’s residence in Tulsa. After announcing their presence, a male identified as Richard Barnett attempted to flee from a door along the side of the garage. Officers subdued Barnett, and as he was being taken into custody, a Taurus semi-auto pistol fell from his waistband. During a search of the home, officers found Barnett’s photo identification and Cherokee Nation paperwork. They also discovered 1,837 grams of methamphetamine, 13 grams of heroin, multiple firearms and ammunition, and items used in the distribution of narcotics such as digital scales and baggies. Three others were also taken into custody.

Just weeks after his arrest, Barnett  bonded out of custody and immediately resumed his drug operation by obtaining another stash of methamphetamine and another firearm.  On March 15, 2019, officers executed a search warrant at the same residence, where they found methamphetamine, numerous pills in baggies, and a loaded .25 caliber pistol. Four others were also taken into custody.

The Tulsa Police Department and Drug Enforcement Administration conducted the investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Joel-lyn A. McCormick is prosecuting the case. AUSA McCormick is the Lead Attorney for the Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force in the Northern District of Oklahoma.


Public Affairs

Updated January 20, 2021

Drug Trafficking
Firearms Offenses