Tacoma – Two Tacoma residents pleaded guilty this week in U.S. District Court to drug-distribution charges that carry mandatory-minimum sentences, announced Acting U.S. Attorney Tessa M. Gorman. Tyson Lloyd, 32, faces a mandatory minimum ten years in prison and up to life in prison. Cole Hornbeck, 24, faces a mandatory minimum 5 years in prison and up to 40 years in prison. The penalties are driven by the drug quantities in the case. In addition, both men illegally possessed firearms in connection with their drug activity. Sentencing by U.S. District Judge Benjamin H. Settle is scheduled for August 30, 2021.
According to the plea agreements, Lloyd supervised Hornbeck as a distributor in his drug-trafficking network. In April 2020, the defendants engaged in various sales of methamphetamine to a person working with law enforcement. One sale occurred in the parking lot of a Target store, another in a McDonald’s parking lot. Ultimately, the defendants and the person who was a source of supply for the drugs were arrested during a drug deal for a large quantity of methamphetamine in Auburn, Washington. When law enforcement searched Lloyd and Hornbeck’s shared residence, investigators seized more methamphetamine, cocaine, Xanax and steroids that the defendants planned to distribute. Law enforcement also found two firearms in the residence: a shotgun and a stolen .45‑caliber pistol.
In addition to the drug conspiracy, Lloyd pleaded guilty to possessing firearms as a felon; he has multiple Washington State felony convictions for crimes such as burglary, car theft, and identity theft. Hornbeck pleaded guilty to possessing firearms as an unlawful user of controlled substances. These firearm offenses are both punishable by up to 10 years in prison.
Lloyd and Hornbeck have been in custody at the Federal Detention Center at SeaTac since their arrests on April 29, 2020.
This effort is part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF) operation. OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles the highest-level criminal organizations that threaten the United States using a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach. Additional information about the OCDETF Program can be found at https://www.justice.gov/OCDETF
The case was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA) Tacoma Resident Office, the Lewis County Joint Narcotics Enforcement Team (JNET), and the Grays Harbor Drug Task Force (GHDTF).
Press contact for the U.S. Attorney’s Office is Communications Director Emily Langlie at (206) 553-4110 or Emily.Langlie@usdoj.gov.