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Press Release

Hogsett Announces Sentencing Of Bloomington-area Resident As Part Of Gun, Drug Prosecution

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

U.S. Attorney continues seeing results from Violent Crime Initiative

Bloomington – Joseph H. Hogsett, United States Attorney, announced the sentencing of Courtney Pickett, 29, Bloomington for one count of conspiracy to distribute with intent to possess five kilograms of cocaine and one count of carrying a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime. Pickett was sentenced to 15 years by U.S. District Judge Sarah Evans Barker.

“When criminals band together, the damage they can inflict is much greater,” said Hogsett. “It is important to prosecute every player in the game so that career criminals don’t have a chance to repeat their attempts.”

Between November and mid-December 2011, Pickett and four other defendants conspired to break into a property they believed contained a large quantity of narcotics. Pickett illegally possessed a firearm in order to further the plan to rob the property. Local and federal law enforcement monitored the defendants’ activities and interrupted the attempted robbery on December 15, 2011.

“This office is dedicated to taking violent criminals off the streets of our Hoosier communities,” said Hogsett.

Thomas Owings, a codefendant is serving a 20 year sentence for his part in the crime at Terre Haute Federal Prison.

This prosecution was part of the United States Attorney’s Violent Crime Initiative. The United States Attorney’s Violent Crime Initiative began in 2011, and is intended to focus on the “worst of the worst” violent offenders by marshaling federal resources to provide local partners the additional tools they may need to succeed in their effort to promote peace. In 2011, only 14 firearms charges were filed. Since then, over 330 firearms cases have been prosecuted. By charging these cases federally, violent felons serve at least 85 % of their sentence.

According to Assistant United States Attorney Barry Glickman, who prosecuted this case for the government, Pickett will also serve three years of supervised release after his sentence.

Updated January 26, 2015