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Press Release

Birch Tree Man Sentenced to 25 Years for Illegal Firearm, Meth

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

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – Tammy Dickinson, United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, announced today that a Birch Tree, Mo., man has been sentenced in federal court for illegally possessing a firearm and for possessing methamphetamine with the intent to distribute.

Raymond Doyle Smotherman, 48, of Birch Tree, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Greg Kays on Tuesday, Nov. 19, 2013, to 25 years in federal prison without parole.

On July 3, 2013, Smotherman pleaded guilty to possessing a firearm in furtherance of a drug-trafficking crime and to possessing 50 grams or more of methamphetamine with the intent to distribute.

A Missouri State Highway Patrol trooper conducted a traffic stop of Smotherman’s vehicle on Dec. 30, 2011. The trooper noticed a rifle concealed in Smotherman’s vehicle on a shelf above the sun visors. The trooper searched Smotherman’s vehicle; in addition to the loaded Remington .270-caliber rifle on the shelf above the sun visor, he found a loaded Remington .22-caliber rifle, a loaded Ruger .22-caliber pistol, various rounds of ammunition and a bag that contained methamphetamine. In total, troopers discovered 17.04 grams of methamphetamine in the vehicle.

On March 12, 2012, law enforcement officers received information from a confidential source that Smotherman and another person were traveling to Kansas City to purchase methamphetamine. The next day, a state trooper spotted the vehicle Smotherman was driving on U.S. Highway 60 and conducted a traffic stop. Troopers located a WD-40 can under the front passenger seat. Inside the can were plastic baggies that contained methamphetamine. Another bag of methamphetamine was found in the battery compartment of a Dewalt cordless drill and caulking tube. In total, troopers discovered 110.03 grams of methamphetamine in the vehicle.

This case was prosecuted by Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Ami Harshad Patel Miller and Assistant U.S. Attorney Cynthia J. Hyde. It was investigated by the Missouri State Highway Patrol, the South Central Drug Task Force and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

Updated January 12, 2015