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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of West Virginia

Monday, February 11, 2013

Huntington Man Sentenced To 7 Years In Federal Prison For Firearm And Illegal Drug Possession Charges

HUNTINGTON, W.Va. – U.S. Attorney Booth Goodwin today announced that a Huntington man was sentenced to a total of seven years in federal prison for possessing a firearm during a drug trafficking crime and possession with intent to distribute heroin.  Gregory Donearl Easterling also known as “Smoke” and “Dion A. Foster,” 38, of Huntington, previously pleaded guilty in September 2012. On December 21, 2011, members of the Huntington Drug and Violent Crimes Task Force conducted a search of the defendant’s Huntington residence.  During the search of Easterling’s residence, law enforcement officers found approximately 6.8 grams of heroin located on an open kitchen shelf, an additional six bundles of heroin, three firearms and digital scales.  Easterling admitted to law enforcement that he intended to sell the heroin.   

Also during the December 2011 search of the defendant’s residence, law enforcement officers seized a loaded .45 caliber pistol that was stored in the rail of the defendant’s bed.  Easterling admitted that he was responsible for possessing a total of 27 grams of heroin and 60 30-milligram oxycodone pills. 

The Court sentenced Easterling to two years in prison for possession with intent to distribute heroin and five years in prison for possessing a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime, for a total of seven years in prison. 

This case was prosecuted as part of an ongoing effort led by the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of West Virginia to combat the illicit sale and misuse of prescription drugs.  The U.S. Attorney’s Office, joined by federal, state and local law enforcement agencies, is committed to aggressively pursuing and shutting down illegal pill trafficking, eliminating open air drug markets, and curtailing the spread of opiate painkillers in communities across the Southern District. 

This case was also brought as part of Project Safe Neighborhoods. Project Safe Neighborhoods is a nationwide commitment to reduce gun crime in the United States by networking existing local programs targeting gun crime.

The Huntington Drug and Violent Crimes Task Force conducted the investigation. The prosecution was handled by Assistant United States Attorney Gregory McVey.

Updated January 7, 2015