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Man on probation or discharge in three states arrested by Davenport police on drugs and gun charges

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A man on probation or conditional discharge in three states was arrested Friday by Davenport Police for allegedly selling drugs, including fentanyl, and being a felon in possession of a handgun. 

Austen Michael Thomas is on probation out of Polk County, Iowa, on a pair of theft convictions; conditional discharge out of Rock Island County on gun and resisting a peace officer convictions; and, in Dakota County, Minnesota, for a drug conviction. 

Thomas, 24, is charged in Scott County District Court with one count of possession with the intent to deliver fentanyl, a Class C felony under Iowa law that carries a prison sentence of 10 years.

He also is charged with one count of possession with the intent to deliver marijuana, two violations of Iowa’s Drug Tax Stamp law and one count of being a felon in possession of a firearm. Each of the four charges is a Class D felony that carries a prison sentence of five years.

According to the arrest affidavit filed by Davenport Police Detective Ryan Leabo, at 10:26 a.m. officers detained Thomas at 209 W. 53rd St. as part of a narcotics investigation.

When Thomas was searched, officers seized a plastic baggie that was in the right side of his jacket. The bag contained 85 ½ fentanyl pills made to resemble Percoset 30 milligram pills. In his affidavit, Leabo said the typical user of what are known on the street as “Perc 30” fentanyl pills uses one-quarter to one-half of a pill at a time.

Officers also searched Thomas’s residence from which they seized a total of 759.46 grams, or 1.67 pounds, of marijuana. The marijuana was separated into four plastic bags of 25.1 grams, 21.65 grams, each about three-quarters of an ounce, 24.50 grams, or .86 of an ounce, and 688.21 grams, or 1.52 pounds. 

Also seized was 6.45 grams of suspected Xanax ills, a digital scale and $51,367 found throughout the home.

From underneath Thomas’ bed officers seized a Smith & Wesson M&P 9mm handgun.

According to the arrest affidavit, Thomas has a felony drug conviction out of Dakota County, Minnesota, on Feb. 18, 2021.

According Dakota County District Court electronic records, Thomas was sentenced to three years on probation. According to the Iowa Department of Corrections website, Thomas is on an interstate compact probation until Feb. 18, 2024, for the drug law violation. In other words, he was allowed to serve his probation in Iowa. 

Also, Thomas currently is serving a sentence of two years on probation in Polk County, Iowa, according to the Iowa Department of Corrections website.

On Sept. 15, 2020, he pleaded guilty to two counts of first-degree theft during a hearing in Polk County District Court, according to district court electronic records. On Nov. 10, 2020, Polk County District Judge Michael Huppert deferred judgment in the case while sentencing Thomas to two years on probation. First-degree theft is a Class C felony under Iowa law that carries a prison sentence of 10 years.

According to the Iowa code, deferred judgement means a sentencing option whereby both the adjudication of guilt and the imposition of a sentence are deferred by the court and whereby the court assesses a civil penalty upon the entry of the deferred judgment. The court retains the power to pronounce judgment and impose sentence subject to the defendant’s compliance with conditions set by the court as a requirement of the deferred judgment.

In accordance with Thomas’ plea, charges of first-degree robbery and first-degree burglary, both Class B felonies under Iowa law that carry a prison sentence of 25 years, were dropped.

Thomas also is serving two years on conditional discharge out of Rock Island County. On June 23, 2020, Thomas was one of three people arrested after a high-speed chase that began in Davenport and ended in Moline.

Thomas was charged with aggravated unlawful use of a weapon and resisting a peace officer, both Class 4 felonies under Illinois law that carry a prison sentence of one to three years.

On Aug. 27, 2021, Thomas pleaded guilty to the charges and was sentenced to two years on conditional discharge.

Thomas was being held Saturday night in the Scott County Jail on a $30,000 bond, cash or surety. A preliminary hearing on the charges is scheduled for Jan. 25 in Scott County District Court. 

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