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Clinton woman sentenced to 15 years in federal methamphetamine, gun case

Clinton woman sentenced to 15 years in federal methamphetamine, gun case


A Clinton woman was sentenced Thursday to 15 years in federal prison for possessing more than a half-pound of methamphetamine and guns during a traffic stop in January.

Samantha Breanne Houston, 32, pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court, Davenport in June to conspiracy to distribute controlled substances and carrying a firearm during and in relation to a drug trafficking crime.

According to the plea agreement, she and others conspired to distribute meth between Aug. 7, 2018 and Jan. 28.

At 5:09 p.m. Jan. 28, Clinton police pulled over a silver Pontiac Grand Prix, driven by Houston, for an improper brake light, according to court records.

Officers learned that Houston had a suspended license. She was unable to provide proof of insurance for the vehicle, and a tow was requested.

An officer asked a male passenger to step out of the vehicle and as he did so, the officer smelled raw marijuana.

The passenger admitted he recently smoked marijuana.

Officers observed marijuana on top of a backpack in front of the passenger seat.

A search discovered a loaded Sterling Arms .25-caliber pistol underneath the driver’s seat. It had been purchased in Colorado.

An officer searched another bag and found a loaded Llama .32-caliber gun. It was manufactured in Spain.

A bag of marijuana was found in a bag with female hygiene products, a woman's wallet that held various cards bearing Houston’s name, women’s jewelry, a secured lock box and other items.

At the Clinton County Jail, Houston would not allow police to search the lock box.

She said an ex-boyfriend gave her one of the guns and she found the other handgun in the street.

Houston was convicted of possession with intent to deliver morphine, a Class C felony, in June 2017 in Clinton County and is prohibited from owning or possessing a firearm.

On Jan. 29, a search warrant was obtained for the lock box. Inside was a large plastic bag that contained 270.9 grams, or more than a half-pound, of methamphetamine as identified by the state crime lab, according to court records.

Chief Judge John Jarvey on Thursday sentenced Houston to 10 years in prison on the conspiracy charge and five years on the gun charge and ordered that the sentences run back-to-back.

She will serve five months of supervised release once she completes her prison sentence. There is no parole in the federal system.


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