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Press Release

Ozark Man Sentenced to 16 Years for Meth Conspiracy

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

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – An Ozark, Mo., man was sentenced in federal court today for his role in a conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine.

Jevn Todd Griffitt, 26, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Roseann Ketchmark to 16 years and eight months in federal prison without parole. The court also ordered Griffitt to forfeit to the government $15,324, which represents the proceeds he obtained from the drug-trafficking conspiracy.

On Jan. 10, 2023, Griffitt pleaded guilty to one count of conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine and one count of possessing methamphetamine with the intent to distribute. Griffitt conspired with co-defendants Christopher Richard Ward, 45, of Kansas City, Mo., and Paris Ready, 29, of Sperry, Oklahoma, to distribute methamphetamine from May 2 to Nov. 7, 2019.

Griffitt admitted that he purchased approximately 1.2 kilograms of methamphetamine from Ward for $8,000 on Sept. 14, 2019. Griffitt also admitted that he sold firearms to Ward.

On Oct. 29, 2019, Griffitt sold a Beretta Stoeger Cougar 9mm handgun to an undercover officer, whom he met in Ozark, for $300. Detectives with the Springfield, Mo., Police Department identified Griffitt as a passenger in a Chevrolet Silverado on Oct. 31, 2019, and Greene County, Mo., sheriff’s deputies attempted to conduct a stop on Interstate 44. The Silverado fled and deputies pursued the vehicle into the Springfield city limits. The Silverado began travelling in the opposite direction of traffic and the pursuit was terminated. The Silverado was located after it was abandoned a short time later.

Throughout the pursuit, deputies saw Griffitt throwing purported methamphetamine out of the front passenger’s window. Investigators recovered approximately 238 grams of methamphetamine from the roadway along the course of the vehicle pursuit. Officers found a blue nylon bag on the front passenger floorboard of the Silverado that contained an AR-15 magazine and other ammunition, miscellaneous AR-15 parts, an AR-15 armorers kit, drug paraphernalia, and $74 in cash. Approximately 12 grams of methamphetamine was found on the front passenger floorboard and approximately 88 grams of methamphetamine was scattered throughout the truck and on the ground leading away from the front passenger’s seat.

Ward was arrested on an outstanding state warrant by Jackson County, Mo., sheriff’s deputies on Sept. 30, 2019. During the arrest, Ward attempted to flee from the deputies on foot but tripped and fell, which caused a Sig Sauer 9mm handgun to fall onto the ground. On the same day, the staff at a local hotel where Ward was staying found a black zippered case while cleaning his room. The case contained six plastic baggies with a total of 239 grams of methamphetamine. The case also contained a plastic bag with .9 grams of heroin.

Ward told investigators that he had purchased one pound (approximately 453.5 grams) of methamphetamine from his source two to three times each week for approximately one month. Ward said he sold Griffit a kilogram of methamphetamine two or three times, and that Griffitt had provided him with three firearms. Ward said he traded one-half ounce of methamphetamine to Griffitt for the Sig Sauer 9mm handgun he possessed when he was arrested. Ward also admitted to several other instances in which he sold methamphetamine.

Both Ward and Ready pleaded guilty to their roles in the drug-trafficking conspiracy and have been sentenced. Ward was sentenced on Nov. 9, 2023, to 12 years and seven months in federal prison without parole. The court also ordered Ward to forfeit to the government $39,960, which represents the proceeds he obtained from the drug-trafficking conspiracy. Ready was sentenced on April 18, 2023, to five years in federal prison without parole.

This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Trey Alford. It was investigated by the Jackson County Drug Task Force.

Updated November 29, 2023

Drug Trafficking