Columbia man sentenced to over 10 years in prison for drug, firearm charges

Columbia man sentenced to over 10 years in prison for drug, firearm charges
(Source: ARC)

COLUMBIA, S.C. (WIS) - A Columbia man has been sentenced to 10 years in federal prison in connection with drug and firearm charges.

Trent Jerrod Daniels, 33, pled guilty to possession with intent to distribute marijuana and being a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition.

On May 8, deputies with the Richland County Sheriff’s Department were conducting surveillance on Abbott Road after receiving information about drug dealing in the area.

Deputies saw what they believed to be drug deals between an individual in a vehicle and others in the roadway. Deputies then attempted a traffic stop on the driver of the vehicle, who was later identified as Daniels.

A high-speed chase ensued and officers saw Daniels throwing a bag out of the car window. The vehicle was eventually stopped on Shop Road and South Beltline Boulevard. Deputies recovered the bag and found a loaded Hi-Point .380 caliber handgun, marijuana, and digital scales inside of it.

A small amount of crack cocaine was found in the vehicle and counterfeit money was found in Daniels’ pocket. Daniels admitted to distributing marijuana and crack cocaine earlier on Abbott Road and to throwing the bag containing the marijuana and loaded gun out of the car during the chase. Daniels also admitted to purchasing the firearm off the street as he knew he was prohibited from possessing one.

Daniels, who was on state parole at the time of the instant offense, is prohibited under federal law from possessing firearms and ammunition based upon prior state convictions for 2nd-degree burglary, use of a motor vehicle without the owner’s permission, grand larceny, strong-arm robbery, and distribution of crack cocaine.

A ballistics analysis through National Integrated Ballistic Information Network revealed that the Hi-Point .380 caliber handgun was linked to shell casings recovered at an unsolved December 2017 burglary in Richland County.

United States District Judge J. Michelle Childs sentenced Daniels to 130 months in federal prison, to be followed by a four-year term of court-ordered supervision.

The case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives and the Richland County Sheriff’s Department. This case was prosecuted as part of the joint federal, state, and local Project Safe Neighborhoods.

Assistant United States Attorney Stacey D. Haynes of the Columbia office handled the prosecution.

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