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Press Release

Former Woonsocket Man Sentenced to Federal Prison for Trafficking Crack Cocaine

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Rhode Island

PROVIDENCE – A former Woonsocket man who, according to court documents, operated a significant drug dealing business in the Woonsocket area has been sentenced to five years in federal prison, announced United States Attorney Zachary A. Cunha.

David Kennedy, 33, pleaded guilty on October 1, 2019, to a charge of conspiracy to distribute and possession with intent to distribute 28 grams or more of cocaine base, admitting that, on at least three occasions while under law enforcement surveillance, he supplied a total of 44.25 grams of crack cocaine to customers brought to him by an individual who acted as a “broker.” 

At the time of his arrest in July 2019, Kennedy was found by members of the FBI Safe Streets Task Force to be in possession of 119 grams of crack cocaine, 895 grams of powder cocaine, and $3,000 in cash.

At sentencing on Tuesday, U.S. District Court Chief Judge John J. McConnell, Jr., sentenced Kennedy to 60 months of incarceration to be followed by four years of federal supervised release.

Christian Nieves, 37,  formerly of Woonsocket, identified during the investigation as the “broker” working with Kennedy, pleaded guilty on October 1, 2019, to conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute 28 grams or more of cocaine base. He was sentenced by Chief Judge McConnell, Jr., in January 2020 to five years in federal prison to be followed by four years of federal supervised release.

The cases were prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Sandra R. Hebert and Christine D. Lowell.

The Rhode Island FBI Safe Streets Task Force consists of agents and law enforcement officers from the FBI, United States Marshals Service, Central Falls Police Department, Cranston Police Department, Pawtucket Police Department, Providence Police Department, West Warwick Police Department, Woonsocket Police Department, and Rhode Island State Police.

This was prosecuted as part of the joint federal, state, and local Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), 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.



Jim Martin

(401) 709-5357

Updated July 14, 2023

Project Safe Neighborhoods
Press Release Number: 23-78