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Hattiesburg Drug Traffickers Get Significant Sentences in Federal Prison

Photo courtesy of TeleSouth Communications Inc.

20 Years for Renchie, 7 Years for Williams, in Conspiracy Involving Almost Two Kilograms of Meth

Justin Williams, 30, of Hattiesburg, was sentenced yesterday by Senior U.S. District Judge Keith Starrett to 84 months in prison, followed by five years of supervised release, for conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine, announced U.S. Attorney Mike Hurst and Special Agent in Charge Jere T. Miles with Homeland Security Investigations in New Orleans.

Williams’ co-defendant, Rodney Renchie, 31, also of Hattiesburg, was sentenced by Judge Starrett last week, on June 11, 2020, to serve 240 months in federal prison, followed by five years of supervised release.  Both defendants were also ordered to pay a $5,000 fine.

“These individuals put kids, families, neighbors, and entire communities at significant risk of harm by slinging this poison throughout the Hattiesburg area.  I applaud our HSI agents and our federal prosecutors for taking these criminals off our streets, as their hard work has literally saved people’s lives,” said U.S. Attorney Hurst.

“These sentences reflect the seriousness of the charges and the danger this drug poses to our communities,” said Jere T. Miles, Special Agent in Charge of HSI New Orleans.  “It is also a gratifying outcome for the diligent work our special agents and law enforcement partners put into keeping our neighborhoods and community members safe.”

On June 19, 2019, HSI agents discovered that Renchie and Williams had sold 1.7 kilograms of methamphetamine, commonly known as “ICE,” to individuals in the parking lot of a hotel on Hardy Street in Hattiesburg.  When HSI agents arrived to arrest Renchie and Williams, Renchie attempted to flee in his vehicle but backed into another car in the parking lot.  Williams attempted to flee on foot and threw a bag containing methamphetamine as he ran from agents.  Williams was apprehended a short time later.

On July 10, 2020, Williams and Renchie were charged in a federal criminal indictment with conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute methamphetamine.  Williams pled guilty before Judge Starrett on October 3, 2019, and Renchie pled guilty on December 5, 2019.

The case was investigated by Homeland Security Investigations and prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Shundral H. Cole.

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