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Press Release

Hot Springs Man Sentenced To 18 Years In Federal Prison For Drug Trafficking And Firearms Possession

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of Arkansas

Hot Springs, Arkansas – David Clay Fowlkes, Acting United States Attorney for the Western District of Arkansas, announced that Robert Arthur Blackstead Jr., age 56, of Hot Springs, Arkansas, was sentenced today to 216 months in federal prison followed by three years of supervised release on one count of Possession with Intent to Distribute Methamphetamine and one count of Possession of a Firearm in Furtherance of a Drug Trafficking Crime. The Honorable Chief Judge Susan O. Hickey presided over the sentencing hearing in the United States District Court in Hot Springs.

In January of 2019, investigators with the 18th Judicial Drug Task Force and agents with Homeland Security Investigations Little Rock launched an investigation into Blackstead’s drug trafficking in the Western District of Arkansas. Over the course of the investigation, investigators and agents were able to conduct several controlled purchases of methamphetamine from Blackstead.

During the arrest of Blackstead, a search of his residence was conducted by investigators and agents.  The search resulted in locating three firearms, a distribution amount of methamphetamine and drug paraphernalia.

Blackstead was indicted by a federal grand jury in March of 2019 and entered a guilty plea in September of 2019.

This case was investigated by the 18th Judicial Drug Task Force and Homeland Security Investigations Little Rock. Assistant United States Attorney David Harris prosecuted the case for the Western District of Arkansas.

This case was prosecuted as part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. The Department of Justice reinvigorated PSN in 2017 as part of the Department’s renewed focus on targeting violent criminals, directing all U.S. Attorney’s Offices to work in partnership with federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement and the local community to develop effective, locally-based strategies to reduce violent crime.

Updated April 9, 2021

Project Safe Neighborhoods
Drug Trafficking