Skip to main content
Press Release

Gettysburg Man Indicted for Drug, Explosive, and Firearm Charges

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of South Dakota

United States Attorney Ron Parsons announced that a Gettysburg, South Dakota, man has been indicted by a federal grand jury for Conspiracy to Distribute a Controlled Substance, Possession with Intent to Distribute a Controlled Substance, Possession of a Firearm by a Prohibited Person, and Possession of an Unregistered Firearm and Destructive Device.

Adam Westphal, age 34, was indicted on August 13, 2018.  He appeared before U.S. Magistrate Judge Mark A. Moreno on August 29, 2018, and pled not guilty to the Indictment.

The maximum penalty upon conviction is up to life in federal prison and/or a $10,000,000 fine, lifetime of supervised release, and $600 to the Federal Crime Victims Fund.  Restitution may also be ordered.

The Indictment alleges that on or about October 1, 2017, Westphal  knowingly and intentionally combined, conspired, confederated, and agreed with persons known and unknown to distribute and possess with intent to distribute 500 grams or more of methamphetamine, a Schedule II controlled substance.  Westphal, who is an unlawful user of, and addicted to a controlled substance, knowingly received and possessed several firearms.  The Indictment further alleges that Westphal knowingly possessed a homemade silencer and a destructive device, items which combination of parts would readily assemble one improvised explosive bomb or destructive device, each of which was not registered to him.

The charges are merely accusations and Westphal is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty. 

Drug trafficking is an inherently violent activity.  Firearms are tools of the trade for drug dealers.  It is common to find drug traffickers armed with guns in order to protect their illegal drug product and cash, and enforce their illegal operations.

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and make our neighborhoods safer for everyone.   Attorney General Jeff Sessions reinvigorated PSN in 2017 as part of the Department’s renewed focus on targeting violent criminals, directing all U.S. Attorney’s Offices to work in partnership with federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement and the local community to develop effective, locally-based strategies to reduce violent crime.

The investigation is being conducted by the Northern Plains Safe Trails Drug Enforcement Task Force and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Meghan N. Dilges is prosecuting the case.   

Westphal was remanded to the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service.  A trial date has not been set. 

Updated August 31, 2018

Drug Trafficking
Firearms Offenses
Project Safe Neighborhoods