For Immediate Release
Bradenton Man Pleads Guilty to Drug and Gun Offenses
Tampa, Florida – Joseph Brice, Jr. (26, Bradenton) has pleaded guilty to distributing heroin and fentanyl, and to possessing a firearm as a convicted felon. He faces a maximum penalty of life in federal prison. A sentencing date has not yet been scheduled.
According to the plea agreement, Brice sold heroin and fentanyl to an undercover officer on five different occasions. During the fifth drug sale, Brice sold heroin and a firearm to the undercover officer. Brice, who has prior felony convictions for armed burglary and cocaine distribution, is prohibited from possessing a firearm or ammunition under federal law.
This case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney David C. Waterman.
This case was brought as part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (“PSN”). PSN 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. In the Middle District of Florida, U.S. Attorney Maria Chapa Lopez coordinates PSN efforts in cooperation with various federal, state, and local law enforcement officials.