You are here

Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of Tennessee

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, March 11, 2020

Jackson Man Sentenced to Over 26 Years for Conspiracy to Distribute Methamphetamine and Possession of a Firearm in Furtherance of a Drug Trafficking Crime

Jackson, TN –Cedric Townsend, 38, has been sentenced to 320 months imprisonment for Conspiracy to Distribute 50 grams or more of Actual Methamphetamine and Possession of a Firearm in Furtherance of a Drug Trafficking Crime. U.S. Attorney D. Michael Dunavant for the Western District of Tennessee announced the sentence today.

This is the latest sentencing in a case involving multiple defendants, including Pedro Fuentes, Jr., Ruben Gomez, Anthony French, Amanda Day and Connie Stephens for federal charges of conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine.

According to information presented in court, on October 6, 2018, Townsend was stopped by Dyersburg Police officers for a traffic violation. Townsend’s driver’s license was suspended and he failed a field sobriety test. A search of his vehicle revealed two baggies of methamphetamine/ice, weighing 17.9 grams. On January 3, 2019, agents conducted a controlled drug purchase of methamphetamine/ice from Townsend utilizing a confidential source (CS), weighing 5.06 grams at 96% purity. On January 25, 2019, agents conducted a controlled drug purchase from a co-defendant, Connie Stephens by a CS for 13.5 grams of methamphetamine/ice at 99% purity. Townsend was present and distributed 42 grams to Stephens. Townsend was later arrested as he left Stephens’ residence and found to be in possession of 285 grams of methamphetamine at 96% purity and a .45 caliber Hi-Point pistol. Townsend gave a statement of admission to law enforcement officers admitting to distributing 8.16 kilograms of methamphetamine/ice during the conspiracy.

During the sentencing hearing, the government presented proof that Townsend attempted to escape custody from the agents after his arrest. He was apprehended a short time later in Fowlkes, South of Dyersburg, TN.

On March 10, 2020, U.S. District Court Chief Judge Thomas Anderson sentenced Townsend to 320 months in federal prison followed by 5 years supervised release. Co-Defendant Connie Stephens was previously sentenced on February 24, 2020 to 168 months in federal prison, followed by 5 years of supervised release:
https://www.justice.gov/usao-wdtn/pr/ripleywoman-sentenced-14-years-federal-prison-conspiracy-distribute-over-50-grams

U.S. Attorney D. Michael Dunavant said, "Armed drug dealers pose a significant public safety risk to our communities, and must be punished and incapacitated in a meaningful way. Individuals who distribute harmful drugs into our rural communities can no longer hide. We are proud to work with our law enforcement partners to use significant federal laws and sentencing to remove this dangerous offender from the streets, and we will continue to do so to reduce the threat of addiction, injury, violence, and death across West Tennessee."

This case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation Safe Streets Task Force, Dyersburg Police Department, Tennessee Bureau of Investigation and the United States Postal Service.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Jerry Kitchen prosecuted this case on behalf of the government.

Contact: 
Cherri Green Public Affairs (901) 544-4231 Cherri.Green@usdoj.gov
Updated March 11, 2020