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Five face federal prison time

JACKSON – Five Northampton County men are in federal prison today.

Sheriff Wardie Vincent held a press conference Friday morning to announce federal sentencing for the five men who pled guilty to a variety of drug and weapons charges.

&uot;This was a great effort by our drug unit,&uot; Vincent said. &uot;Because of the work of deputies George Reed and Lanett Clements, we have taken major drug dealers off the streets.&uot;

Jermiah Mangum of 100 Grant Street in Garysburg was indicted by a federal grand jury last year on charges of possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.

Those charges came after Mangum was arrested by local authorities for possession with intent to manufacture, sell and deliver a schedule II narcotic, maintaining a vehicle, place or dwelling to store a controlled substance, felony possession of a firearm and possession of drug paraphernalia.

Mangum was sentenced to 60 months in federal prison and will face five years of supervised probation after his release.

Also sentenced for federal crimes was Michael Lamar Bowser of 209 Walnut Street in Woodland. He was sentenced to 120 months in prison followed by eight years of supervised probation for possession with intent to distribute more than five grams of cocaine-based crack.

Bowser was originally arrested March 5, 2004 by the Northampton County Sheriff’s Office on charges of possession with intent to manufacture, sell and deliver a schedule II narcotic, maintaining a vehicle, place or dwelling to store a controlled substance, possession of drug paraphernalia and trafficking in cocaine.

A Margarettsville man is also in the federal penitentiary after pleading guilty Thursday to possession of a firearm by a felon. Calvin Lee Barber of 102 Mt. Carmel Road will serve 120 months in federal custody which will run concurrent with a drug-related sentence in Virginia.

Bowser was originally indicted in 2003, but had not been available because of the Virginia case, according to Vincent.

Gary Jerome Robinson of 375 Chapel Hill Drive in Rich Square was sentenced Thursday to 100 months in federal prison to be followed by three years of supervised probation on a charge of possession with intent to distribute more than 50 grams of cocaine-based crack.

Robinson was originally arrested December 3, 2003 by the Northampton County Sheriff’s Office on charges of possession with intent to manufacture, sell and deliver a schedule II narcotic, possession of drug paraphernalia, maintaining a vehicle, place or dwelling to store a controlled substance and trafficking in cocaine.

The final person from Northampton County who was sentenced to federal prison was Shawn Edward Robinson of 214 Blythe Road in Garysburg.

Robinson was indicted on two counts of possession of a firearm during a drug crime and one count of distribution of cocaine-based crack. He was sentenced to 72 months and 60 months on the different charges to run concurrently. He will also face five years supervised probation upon his release.

&uot;These people were some of the major targets in different areas of the county,&uot; Vincent said. &uot;They were dealing in crack cocaine and guns.&uot;

Vincent said he decided to seek federal indictments because they would carry more weight and cause longer sentences than state crimes.

&uot;Our main focus was to get these people off the street, out of the system and get rid of some of the drug trafficking,&uot; Vincent said. &uot;It took a long time to get it done.&uot;

The sheriff said he would continue working with the district attorney’s office to move cases to the federal level that warranted such action.

&uot;We won’t have to worry about them back on the streets next week, next month or next year for that matter,&uot; Vincent said. &uot;We are going to continue to work drugs aggressively.

&uot;We hope this will deter some of those who are dealing drugs, but if it doesn’t, our drug agents will be knocking on the door soon enough,&uot; the sheriff added.

Vincent was quick to praise the work of Reed and Clements, saying the cases couldn’t have been successful without their hard and detailed work.

&uot;It takes a lot of time and detail to get a case to the federal level,&uot; Vincent said. &uot;Obviously, by these outcomes, they have done a great job of doing that.&uot;

The sheriff also said there were more indictments and convictions to come.

&uot;This is not all, there are more,&uot; he said. &uot;If your name didn’t make the paper today, it will.&uot;