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Press Release

Lauderdale County Man Sentenced to 10 Years for Possession of Meth and Gun

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

Memphis, TN – Daniel Heatherly, 39, of Ripley, Tennessee, has been sentenced to 120 months in federal prison for possession of methamphetamine with intent to distribute and possession of a firearm in the commission of a drug trafficking crime. D. Michael Dunavant, U.S. Attorney announced the sentence today.

According to information presented in Court, the Lauderdale County Sheriff’s Office was investigating Heatherly for distribution of methamphetamine. On February 11, 2019, a Lauderdale County Sheriff's deputy stopped Heatherly as he was driving. The deputy was aware that Heatherly’s license was revoked due to a prior DUI conviction. The deputy asked to search the vehicle, and Heatherly consented.

The center console compartment contained a loaded handgun, meth pipe, two clear plastic baggies with meth rocks inside, and scales. Additional methamphetamine was found behind the passenger seat, along with 176 grams of marijuana. Heatherly denied knowing anything about the items.

The methamphetamine was sent to the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) for analysis and testing, the results of which confirmed a total weight of 9.5 grams of methamphetamine with a 100% purity level.

On August 20, 2020, U.S. District Court Judge Sheryl H. Lipman sentenced Heatherly to 120 months in federal prison followed by four years supervised release. There is no parole in the federal system.

U.S. Attorney D. Michael Dunavant said, "This offender presented a double threat of serious bodily injury and death: a drug dealer in possession of a loaded firearm while distributing a highly addictive substance on the streets. Meth distribution+gun=a federal prison sentence that protects the community by incapacitating a dangerous offender, and achieves justice by providing proper punishment without the sanctuary of parole."

The Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) and the Lauderdale County Sheriff’s Office investigated this case.

Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Sean Hord prosecuted this case on behalf of the government.



Cherri Green
Reentry and Community Outreach Coordinator
(901) 544-4231

Updated August 24, 2020