Wilson man sentenced on federal meth charges

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A Wilson man will serve 12 years in prison after pleading guilty to a drug conspiracy charge in a crystal meth case, federal prosecutors said Friday.

U.S. District Judge James C. Dever III sentenced 40-year-old Dennis Ray Taylor in a Raleigh federal courtroom, U.S. Attorney Robert Higdon’s office announced. He will be subject to five years of supervised release following his 12-year prison sentence.

Taylor pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute 5 grams or more of methamphetamine and aiding and abetting possession with intent to distribute 5 grams or more of methamphetamine on July 10.

He and alleged co-conspirator, Brittney Kayla Norvell, 28, who is also known as Brittney Minshew, were indicted on the charges in January 2019. Norvell pleaded guilty on June 14 and received a five-year sentence on Aug. 29, according to prosecutors. Norvell will also serve five years of supervised release after completing her sentence.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of North Carolina charged Taylor and Norvell after Wilson police officers searched a hotel room and caught the pair with 49.11 grams of crystal methamphetamine, a knife with meth residue, sandwich bags, digital scales and cash, prosecutors said.

“The investigation revealed that Taylor and Norvell had received more methamphetamine earlier and intended on selling the rest,” a news release from Hidgon’s office states.

Authorities say they prosecuted Taylor and Norvell in the federal court system through an Organized Crime and Drug Enforcement Task Force operation targeting drug traffickers. The case is also part of the U.S. attorney’s Take Back North Carolina Initiative, a partnership between federal prosecutors and local district attorneys to reduce violent crime, drug trafficking and crimes against law enforcement.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Dena King prosecuted Taylor and Norvell and the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration assisted the Wilson Police Department in the investigation.