Springfield Man, Woman Plead Guilty to Drug-trafficking, Prostitution Conspiracies, Illegal Fireams
For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of Missouri
JEFFERSON CITY, Mo. – Tammy Dickinson, United States Attorney for the Western District of Missouri, announced today that a Springfield, Mo., man and woman have pleaded guilty in federal court to their roles in conspiracies to distribute cocaine and crack cocaine in Boone County, Mo., and to promote prostitution in Boone County.
Ryan D. Wright, 39, and Courtnie Lea Goins, 25, both of Springfield, Mo., pleaded guilty in separate appearances before U.S. Magistrate Judge Matt J. Whitworth on Feb. 25, 2015, to the charges contained in a Nov. 5, 2014, federal indictment.
By pleading guilty, Wright admitted that he participated in a conspiracy to distribute cocaine and crack cocaine in Boone County from Jan. 2 to Aug. 6, 2014. Wright also pleaded guilty to participating in a prostitution conspiracy and to being a felon in possession of firearms and ammunition. Goins pleaded guilty to her role in a conspiracy to use telephones to promote prostitution.
Wright and Goins admitted they traveled to Columbia, Mo., in the spring of 2014. Wright had previously communicated with a co-conspirator in Columbia, from whom he had purchased quantities of cocaine. The co-conspirator explained to Wright how to conduct the business of distributing controlled substances, and asked Wright to supply him with a different type of employee for his prostitution business. Wright supplemented his regular income with revenue from female prostitutes. During their phone conversations, Wright agreed to bring Goins with him to Columbia for the co-conspirator to meet and ultimately to try and employ as a prostitute. During that visit, Goins and the co-conspirator both used cocaine and spent the night together.
When Wright and Goins returned to Springfield, they carried with them some cocaine Wright had received from the co-conspirator, which Wright converted and distributed in Springfield as crack cocaine.
On July 15, 2014, Wright and Goins drove to Columbia again in order for Wright to pick up some cocaine and to leave Goins there. While in Columbia, Goins agreed to have sexual intercourse with a friend of the co-conspirator, for which she would receive money in return. The friend paid Goins approximately $250 in return for sexual intercourse. Afterwards, the co-conspirator gave Goins some cocaine, which they both used.
Wright admitted that he received approximately half a pound of cocaine powder, which he converted into at least 112 grams of crack cocaine and distributed.
When Wright was arrested on Nov. 13, 2014, he was in possession of a Taurus .357-caliber revolver, a Ruger .38-caliber revolver and ammunition. Under federal law, it is illegal for anyone who has been convicted of a felony to be in possession of any firearms or ammunition. Wright has prior felony convictions for arson and possession of a controlled substance.
Under federal statutes, Wright is subject to a mandatory minimum sentence of five years in federal prison without parole, up to a sentence of 55 years in federal prison without parole. Goins is subject to a sentence of up to five years in federal prison without parole. Sentencing hearings will be scheduled after the completion of presentence investigations by the United States Probation Office.
This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Anthony P. Gonzalez. It was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, IRS-Criminal Investigation, the Columbia, Mo., Police Department, the Boone County, Mo., Sheriff’s Department, the U.S. Marshal’s Service, MUSTANG (the Mid-Missouri Unified Strike Team and Narcotics Group), the Drug Enforcement Administration and the Boone County, Mo., Prosecuting Attorney’s Office.
Updated March 16, 2015