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Justice News

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

Monday, June 6, 2016

Roanoke County Woman Pleads Guilty to Gun, Heroin Charges

Abbey Lawhorn Admits to Possessing Heroin, Illegal Short-Barreled Rifle

ROANOKE, VIRGINIA – A Roanoke County woman, who police made multiple controlled purchases of heroin from in 2014 and 2015, pled guilty today to federal drug and gun charges, United States Attorney John P. Fishwick Jr. announced.

Abbey Rae Lawhorn, 33, of Roanoke, Virginia, pled guilty today to one count of possession of heroin with the intent to distribute and one count of possession of a short-barreled rifle that was not registered to her in the National Firearms Registration and Transfer Record.                                                                                                      

“Illegal guns and drugs make the communities of the Western District of Virginia unsafe and we in law enforcement must do what we can to make our streets safer,” United States Attorney Fishwick said today.

According to evidence presented at today’s hearing by Assistant United States Attorney Andrew Bassford, police made controlled purchases of heroin from Lawhorn in December 2014 and April 2015. As a result of these purchases, police obtained a search warrant for Lawhorn’s address in Roanoke County. On May 1, 2015, a search of the residence occupied by Lawhorn and her juvenile daughter was performed and officials found approximately eight bricks of heroin, an amount consistent with distribution. In addition, police discovered three firearms, one of which was a rifle with a barrel less than 16 inches in length. No such firearm was registered to Lawhorn.

The investigation of the case was conducted by the Roanoke County Police Department, the Roanoke HIDTA Task Force and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.  Assistant United States Attorney Andrew Bassford prosecuted the case for the United States.

Drug Trafficking
Updated June 6, 2016