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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Vermont

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, May 3, 2016

New York City Man Sentenced To 27 Months In Federal Prison For Heroin Dealing

The Office of the United States Attorney for the District of Vermont stated that, on May 2, 2016, Jesse Harris, 38, of Brooklyn, New York was sentenced to 27 months in federal prison after his guilty plea to charges that he distributed heroin. U.S. District Court Judge William K. Sessions III also ordered that Harris serve three years of supervised release following his prison term.

According to court records, from 2014 until his arrest on June 30, 2015, Harris regularly traveled from the New York City area to Chittenden County, Vermont with heroin to sell. Harris would stay at the apartment of local residents and use that apartment as a base from which to sell heroin to his customers. On June 30, 2016, agents from the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and the Burlington Police Department, who had been jointly investigating Harris, arrested him after he arrived in Vermont via bus. Harris had approximately 500 bags of heroin on his person.

For his crime, Harris faced a statutory maximum term of 20 years in prison. The United States Sentencing Guidelines, which are advisory, recommended that Harris receive a prison term between 51 and 63 months. The United States argued that Harris should receive a 51-month sentence. In support, the government argued that Harris, who was not a heroin user, trafficked heroin to Vermont solely to earn money and therefore capitalized on Vermont’s heroin epidemic and the suffering of the community.

In determining that a more lenient sentence was appropriate in this case, Judge Sessions considered Harris’ lack of a serious criminal record and the fact that he abided by his pretrial conditions of release, among other factors.

United States Attorney Eric Miller commended the efforts of DEA and the Burlington Police Department for their coordinated efforts in this investigation.

The prosecution is being handled by Assistant U.S. Attorney Timothy C. Doherty, Jr. Harris is represented by David McColgin of the Federal Public Defender’s Office.

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Updated May 3, 2016