Defendants in drug conspiracy, firearms crimes get total sentences of more than 400 months in prison

SAVANNAH, GA:  Three Savannah men will spend a total of nearly 34 years in federal prison after sentencing for a drug trafficking conspiracy and firearms crimes discovered after a high-speed chase with Georgia state troopers.

Amari Jermaine Sams, a/k/a/ “Face”, 37, of Savannah, was sentenced to 200 months in prison by U.S. District Court Judge R. Stan Baker, said Bobby L. Christine, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Georgia. Sams was convicted in July after a three-day jury trial for Conspiracy to Possess With Intent Distribute 50 grams or more of Methamphetamine and a quantity of Cocaine and Marijuana; Possession With Intent to Distribute 50 grams or more of Methamphetamine and a quantity of Cocaine and Marijuana; Possession of a Firearm by a Prohibited Person; Possession of a Stolen Firearm; and Possession of a Firearm in Furtherance of a Drug Trafficking Crime.

Also sentenced were Sams’ co-conspirators, Hakeem Campbell, 28, of Savannah, sentenced to 120 months in prison after pleading guilty to Possession with Intent to Distribute 50 Grams or More of Methamphetamine and a Quantity of Cocaine and Marijuana; and Jovonn Brisbon, 31, of Savannah, sentenced to 86 months in prison after pleading guilty to Conspiracy to Possess with Intent to Distribute Methamphetamine, Cocaine and Marijuana and Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon. All three will be subject to terms of supervised release after completion of their incarceration, and there is no parole in the federal system.

“Our community is automatically a safer place today because three violent drug traffickers are off of our streets,” said U.S. Attorney Christine. “We’re grateful that our state troopers safely ended their reckless attempt to flee from justice, and applaud the work of our law enforcement partners and prosecutors in slamming the door on these dangerous felons.”

According to evidence presented in court documents and proceedings, on the morning of April 22, 2018, Sams, Brisbon and Campbell stole a Ford F-150 from the Savannah Airport and fled from Georgia State Patrol officers at speeds up to 120 mph. During the pursuit, a stolen Glock 40 firearm was thrown from the vehicle and later recovered. State troopers forced the vehicle to a stop and apprehended Brisbon and Campbell, and Savannah Police Department officers captured Sams hiding in a creek parallel to I-516. A search of the stolen vehicle yielded approximately 75 grams of methamphetamine, and inside a book bag found next to the vehicle officers found a stolen Springfield XD .45 caliber pistol, approximately 1 pound of marijuana, 29 grams of cocaine, scales and baggies. The occupants had more than $4,000 cash combined.

 “This case is an example of the partnership between ATF and its local partners to investigate the perpetrators of violent crime,” said Beau Kolodka, Assistant Special Agent in Charge of the Atlanta Field Division of the Bureau of Alcohol, Firearms, Tobacco and Explosives (ATF). “These sentences will ensure the incarceration of three dangerous criminals and contribute to the restoration of order and peace in Savannah.”

“Law enforcement is a collaborative effort, as this case highlights,” said Everett Ragan, Chatham-Savannah County Narcotics Team (CNT) Director. “I am thankful for our partnerships and even more thankful our streets are now safer.”  

“When criminals flee, it always adds an additional level of danger to the job a law enforcement officer performs,” said Lt. Stephanie Stallings, Public Information Director, Georgia State Patrol.The Georgia State Patrol is proud to have well-trained troopers to assist when duty calls. It is an honor to take part in putting these criminals behind bars.”

This case was investigated by the ATF and CNT, along with the Savannah Police Department and the Georgia State Patrol. The case was prosecuted for the United States by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Joshua Bearden and Frank Pennington.