Couple Sentenced for Conspiracy to Distribute Methamphetamine

MONROE, La. –Robert Perkins, 58, of Hall Summit, Louisiana, and Deborah Hawthorne, 60, of Monroe, Louisiana, were sentenced by U.S. District Judge Donald E. Walter, to serve 13 years and 11 years in federal prison, respectively, for conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute 50 grams or more of methamphetamine and 500 grams or more of a mixture and substance containing methamphetamine.

On July 29, 2019, a Ouachita Parish Sheriff’s Office deputy observed a Dodge Charger commit a traffic violation. The deputy learned that the license plate on the vehicle was previously reported stolen and conducted a traffic stop. Robert Perkins, the driver, and Deborah Hawthorne, the passenger, denied consent to search the vehicle. After a K-9 unit alerted on the vehicle, deputies searched it and recovered approximately 960 grams of methamphetamine, three cell phones, and digital scales. Perkins later admitted to the officers that he knew the methamphetamine was inside the vehicle. The text messages on the cell phones recovered from the Charger revealed that Perkins and Hawthorne were working together to distribute the methamphetamine and shared in the proceeds.

The U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration and the Ouachita Parish Sheriff’s Office investigated the case. Assistant U.S. Attorney Jessica D. Cassidy prosecuted the case.