DOJ Seal

Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
Eastern District of Missouri

For Immediate Release

Thursday, December 16, 2021
Sayler A. Fleming
, United States Attorney

St. Louis Man Pleads Guilty to Conspiracy To Possess and Discharge a Firearm

ST. LOUIS – United States District Court Judge E. Richard Webber accepted a plea of guilty from Deronte McDaniels on today’s date.  McDaniels pleaded guilty to conspiracy to possess and discharge a firearm in furtherance of drug trafficking.  Judge Webber set sentencing for March 16, 2022.

According to the plea agreement, in or around October 2019, relative to a shooting investigation by the University City Police Department, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) was requested to assist in locating the suspect, a co-conspirator of McDaniels.  ATF surveillance revealed McDaniels’ co-conspirators in this case were actively distributing fentanyl within the Eastern District of Missouri.

On October 20, 2019, a co-conspirator was shot in the arm which McDaniels witnessed.   McDaniels was the intended target of this drug related shooting and returned fire utilizing his co-conspirator’s handgun. 

In retaliation for this incident, on October 21, 2019, McDaniels and two co-conspirators possessed one or more firearms in furtherance of the commission of a drug trafficking crime. During this violation, they caused the death of David Anderson by shooting him in a case of mistaken identity.  The co-conspirators in the investigation have cases pending before the court. 

The maximum possible penalty provided by law for the crime to which McDaniel is pleading guilty is imprisonment of not more than 20 years, a fine of not more than $250,000, or both such imprisonment and fine. The court may also impose a period of supervised release of not more than 3 years.

The investigation was conducted by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the University City Police Department.

Kansas City Field Division