Three Mercer County men sentenced in federal court in Bluefield
Bluefield, W.Va. – United States Attorney Booth Goodwin announced that three Mercer County men were sentenced today in federal court in Bluefield. Lamar Baxter, 39, of Princeton, was sentenced to 27 months in federal prison for using a communication facility to facilitate a felony. Baxter pled guilty in March of 2015, admitting that on November 11, 2014, he used a telephone in Princeton to set up a drug deal with a confidential informant, and shortly thereafter distributed seven 30mg oxycodone pills to the informant. Baxter admitted distributing a total of about 100 30mg oxycodone pills and about 100 hydromorphone pills over a period of time.
Joshua Blevins, 31, of Bluefield, was sentenced to 16 months in federal prison for use of a communication facility to facilitate a felony. Blevins guilty in February of 2015, admitting that on November 21, 2014, he used a telephone in or near Bluewell to set up a drug deal with a confidential informant. Shortly after that telephone call, Blevins distributed one oxymorphone pill to the informant. Blevins admitted to distributing a total of four oxymorphone pills to the informant.
Carl E. Howard, 62, of Princeton, was sentenced to 11 months in federal prison for distributing hydromorphone. Howard pled guilty in February of 2015, and admitted that on July 8, 2014, he distributed two hydromorphone pills to a confidential informant in Princeton. He further admitted that he distributed a total of 13 hydromorphone pills and small quantities of cocaine base and heroin.
These cases were investigated by the Southern Regional Drug and Violent Crime Task Force under the Bluefield Pill Initiative, 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 and heroin. 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 and heroin in communities across the Southern District. Assistant United States Attorney John File prosecuted these cases.