For Immediate Release
Armed Fentanyl Dealer Sentenced to 20 Years in Prison
NORFOLK, Va. – A Norfolk man was sentenced today to 20 years in prison for distributing fentanyl, and for carrying and possessing a firearm during multiple drug-trafficking crimes.
According to court documents, in January 2019, Jermaine Curtis Parker, 36, a five-time felon, sold pure fentanyl to an undercover police officer six times, although Parker marketed the drugs as heroin. During at least three of those deals, he was armed with a 9mm handgun.
After the sixth purchase, ATF agents and police officers executed search warrants on three of Parker’s properties and recovered an AR pistol, an AR-type rifle, and other handguns. Distribution amounts of marijuana, cutting agents, and drug-packaging materials for heroin were also found at these residences. One of the handguns had been reported stolen during a vehicle theft in Norfolk. Parker was arrested outside one of these properties after engaging in a standoff with the police during which he refused to leave the residence. He later admitted to using the delay to hide one of his guns in the HVAC system.
This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), which is the centerpiece of the Department of Justice’s violent crime reduction efforts. PSN is an evidence-based program proven to be effective at reducing violent crime. Through PSN, a broad spectrum of stakeholders work together to identify the most pressing violent crime problems in the community and develop comprehensive solutions to address them. As part of this strategy, PSN focuses enforcement efforts on the most violent offenders and partners with locally based prevention and reentry programs for lasting reductions in crime.
This case is part of Project Guardian, the Department of Justice’s signature initiative to reduce gun violence and enforce federal firearms laws. Initiated by the Attorney General in the fall of 2019, Project Guardian draws upon the Department’s past successful programs to reduce gun violence; enhances coordination of federal, state, local, and tribal authorities in investigating and prosecuting gun crimes; improves information-sharing by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives when a prohibited individual attempts to purchase a firearm and is denied by the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS), to include taking appropriate actions when a prospective purchaser is denied by the NICS for mental health reasons; and ensures that federal resources are directed at the criminals posing the greatest threat to our communities. Click here for more information about Project Guardian.
G. Zachary Terwilliger, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia; Ashan M. Benedict, Special Agent in Charge of the ATF’s Washington Field Division; and Col. K.L. Wright, Chief of Chesapeake Police, made the announcement after sentencing by Senior U.S. District Judge Robert G. Doumar. Assistant U.S. Attorney William B. Jackson prosecuted the case.
A copy of this press release is located on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia. Related court documents and information are located on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia or on PACER by searching for Case No. 2:19-cr-141.