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Press Release

Christopher Marquis Etheridge and Raymon Rashaun Black Sentenced Following Guilty Pleas to a Federal Drug Conspiracy Charge

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of Alabama

 Acting United States Attorney Steve Butler of the Southern District of Alabama announces today that Christopher Marquis Ethridge was sentenced to 130 months imprisonment and Raymon Rashaun Black was sentenced to 23 months imprisonment.  Both sentences followed entry of guilty pleas in January 2017 to a charge of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute cocaine.

 Ethridge and Black’s guilty pleas included admissions that they conspired with one another and others to possess with intent to distribute cocaine within the Southern District of Alabama.  Recorded telephone calls demonstrated Black arranged a sale of one (1) ounce of cocaine on June 10, 2016, and a sale of four (4) ounces of cocaine on June 12, 2016, to a co-conspirator in the Baldwin County area.
On June 13, 2016, Ethridge obtained cocaine from a source to complete a drug deal arranged by Black with a co-conspirator in Baldwin County.  On June 13, 2016, a vehicle driven by Black, in which Ethridge was a backseat passenger, was stopped by Deputies of the Baldwin County Sheriff’s Office.  During the stop, Deputies noted the smell of marijuana coming from inside the vehicle and Black admitted that he had earlier smoked marijuana in the vehicle.  When Ethridge got out of the backseat a Deputy noticed a set of digital scales where Ethridge had been sitting.  During the search of the vehicle a plastic bag was recovered from under the driver’s seat.  The plastic bag contained approximately 91 grams of powder cocaine.

Based upon Ethridge’s criminal history, Career Offender status was found to be  applicable under the United States Sentencing Guidelines.  This status increased his applicable advisory sentencing guideline range.  Conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute a controlled substance is a violation of Title 21, United States Code Section 846.  Both sentences of imprisonment will be followed by three-year terms of supervised release.

 This case arose from a long-term investigation in the Daphne/Fairhope area conducted by the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Safe Streets Task Force and the Baldwin County Sheriff’s Office Drug Task Force.  This investigation has previously resulted in the indictment of five (5) other defendants on federal drug conspiracy charges.  Acting U.S. Attorney Steve Butler stated, “The partnership of federal, state, and local law enforcement in the Southern District continues its longstanding concerted efforts to assure our communities are safe from drug related crime.”  FBI Special Agent in Charge, Robert Lasky stated, ““These types of investigations are successful due to the dedication and commitment of our state and local partners who are determined to rid their jurisdictions of this type of crime.”  The case was prosecuted by the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Alabama.

Updated May 11, 2017