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Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
Northern District of Florida
For Immediate Release
Jason R. Coody, United States Attorney
Thursday, November 9, 2023

Prior Felon Found Guilty of Drug Trafficking and Firearms Offenses

PENSACOLA, Fla. – Willie Frank Gordon, 41, of Pensacola was found guilty by a federal jury of possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine and cocaine, possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. The guilty verdict was announced by Jason R. Coody, U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Florida.

On March 15, 2022, Gordon was arrested during a traffic stop for driving without a license. During an inventory search of the vehicle, law enforcement located a black backpack containing approximately 200 grams of methamphetamine, cocaine, and fentanyl, associated drug paraphernalia, along with a loaded, chambered pistol. Law enforcement also located a firearm holster in the glove box of the vehicle, three cell phones and over $2,000 on Gordon’s person. Gordon denied knowledge of the controlled substances and the firearm, but ultimately admitted to his possession of the items during a custodial interview with investigators. Law enforcement also located surveillance footage of Gordon approximately 30 minutes prior to the traffic stop where he was observed carrying the black backpack to a vehicle before driving away.

Prior to committing this offense, Gordon had been convicted in six state felony cases and one federal felony case, which included a prior drug trafficking conviction and firearms convictions. Trial testimony revealed that Gordon had previously shot people, and that law enforcement had information he was connected to fentanyl overdoses in Okaloosa County. At the time of his current offense, Gordon was on federal supervised release for his federal conviction of being a felon in possession of firearms and ammunition. 

Sentencing is currently set for Feb. 14, 2024, at 9 a.m. at the U.S. Courthouse in Pensacola before U.S. District Judge M. Casey Rodgers. Gordon faces a mandatory minimum of 15 years in federal prison, with a maximum of life imprisonment.

This conviction was the result of an investigation conducted by the Escambia County Sheriff’s Office and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Assistant U.S. Attorney Jennifer Callahan prosecuted the case.

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), 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 works 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.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Florida is one of 94 offices that serve as the nation’s principal litigators under the direction of the Attorney General. To access available public court documents online, visit the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida website.


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