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North Carolina man sentenced to 24 years in prison for drug-related charges

An Elm City man was sentenced May 6 to 288 months in prison for conspiracy to distribute heroin, cocaine base (crack) and marijuana, according to a press release from the Department of Justice, Eastern District of North Carolina.

According to court documents, Marquavious Harold Carr, 31, was named in an 11-count indictment on June 13, 2018. He was charged with conspiracy to distribute and possess with the intent to distribute 100 grams or more of heroin, 28 grams or more of cocaine base (crack), a quantity of cocaine and a quantity of marijuana (Count One); distribution of a quantity of heroin (Counts Two and Three); possession with intent to distribute a quantity of heroin and aiding and abetting (Count Four); distribution of a quantity of cocaine and aiding and abetting (Count Five); and possession with intent to distribute 28 grams or more of cocaine base (crack) and a quantity of cocaine and aiding and abetting (Count Eight).

On February 5, 2019, Carr pleaded guilty to Counts One and Eight.

According to the press release, the investigation established that Carr was the leader of a conspiracy to distribute cocaine, cocaine base (crack), heroin and marijuana between August 2017 and June 2018 in Nash, Edgecombe and Wilson counties. Carr and seven other individuals were convicted in federal court for their participation in the conspiracy.

“Carr, who was a high-ranking member of the Crips street gang, directed and controlled the activities of the drug trafficking organization even while he was incarcerated in the North Carolina Division of Adult Corrections (NCDAC),” stated the release.

The investigation showed that on November 10, 2010, Carr was convicted of voluntary manslaughter in Wilson County and was sentenced to a term of imprisonment of 92 to 120 months and was released to post-release supervision on May 20, 2017.

“On September 13, 2017, agents observed a vehicle committing traffic violations. Officers initiated a traffic stop and smelled an odor of marijuana,” the relase continued. “Carr, who was driving, stepped out of the vehicle and dropped a digital scale. The scale had a small amount of white residue, which Carr attempted to wipe off with his t-shirt, but the residue tested positive for cocaine.”

On November 28, 2017, officers went to a house on Mill Branch Road in Rocky Mount to execute a search warrant. According to the release, officers saw a cooperating defendant meeting with Carr outside and, upon seeing officers, the cooperating defendant threw a “brick” (approximately 1 gram) of heroin to the ground.

“Carr drove away from the residence, and in the process, he struck a deputy with the Nash County Sheriff’s Office,” stated the release. “Carr continued to flee at a high rate of speed, forcing at least one other vehicle off the road. Carr eventually lost control of his vehicle and crashed into a utility pole. Carr ran from the vehicle, but he was apprehended after a short chase.”

According to the release, the search of Carr’s vehicle revealed 500 bindles (7.37 grams) of heroin, he was found in possession of $1,223 and, in the driveway where Carr and the cooperating defendant were meeting, officers located additional heroin, 13.7 grams of crack cocaine, 13.7 grams of cocaine, 17 grams of marijuana and pills.

“The Defendant’s post-release supervision was revoked, and he returned to NCDAC custody. But Carr then used recorded jail telephones to continue directing and controlling the drug trafficking organization,” the release continued. “Agents reviewed dozens of telephone calls in which Carr directed the distribution of drugs and the collection of thousands of dollars of currency. Carr also gave instructions to co-conspirators regarding firearms.”

The release stated that in total, Carr was responsible for the distribution of more than 400 grams of heroin, more than 850 grams of cocaine base (crack), more than two kilograms of cocaine and more than 700 grams of marijuana. He received enhancements for leadership and reckless endangerment.

The defendant’s co-defendants have all previously been sentenced:

  • Rodney Durrell Thomas: 156 months’ imprisonment.
  • Shaquandra McAllister: 42 months’ imprisonment.
  • Travis Kwymaine Ruffin: 54 months’ imprisonment.
  • Marcus Antwan Wiley: 57 months’ imprisonment.
  • Marquice Quashawn McCoy: 70 months’ imprisonment.
  • Michael Speight: 60 months’ imprisonment.
  • De’Andre Anthony Lucas: 15 months’ imprisonment.

This prosecution is part of Operation Tri County Hookup, an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF) investigation. “OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles the highest-level drug traffickers, money launderers, gangs, and transnational criminal organizations that threaten the United States by using a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach that leverages the strengths of federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies against criminal networks,” stated the release.

G. Norman Acker III, Acting U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina, made the announcement after sentencing by U.S. District Judge James C. Dever III. The Drug Enforcement Administration, the Nash County Sheriff’s Office, the Wilson Police Department and the State Bureau of Investigation investigated the case and Assistant U.S. Attorneys Dena J. King and Scott A. Lemmon prosecuted.

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