Region & State

Hot Springs woman sentenced to federal prison for drug trafficking

U.S. Attorney’s Office Western District

HOT SPRINGS — A Garland County woman was sentenced Thursday to 84 months in prison followed by three years of supervised release on one count of Possession with Intent to Distribute Methamphetamine. The Honorable Chief Judge Susan O. Hickey presided over the sentencing hearing in the U.S. District Court in Hot Springs.

According to court documents, Debra Ellen Hulsey, age 48, was identified by law enforcement to be distributing methamphetamine in Hot Springs, Arkansas, area.

Between the months of August 2020 and January 2021, investigators were able to conduct multiple controlled purchases of methamphetamine from Hulsey.

On March 19, 2021, a search warrant was executed at Hulsey’s residence. The search resulted in investigators locating approximately 17.7 grams of a mixture or substance that field tested positive for methamphetamine and nine firearms.

Hulsey was arrested and an interview was conducted at the Hot Springs Police Department. Hulsey stated that she first began distributing methamphetamine around 2007 and that she had been distributing, on-average, approximately three to four pounds of methamphetamine per week for the last year prior to her arrest.

The methamphetamine seized and purchased was subsequently submitted to the Drug Enforcement Administration laboratory for additional testing.

U.S. Attorney David Clay Fowlkes of the Western District of Arkansas made the announcement.

The Hot Springs Police Department, the 18th East Judicial District Drug Task Force, the Drug Enforcement Administration, Homeland Security Investigations Little Rock, and the 18th East Judicial District Prosecuting Attorney’s Office investigated the case.

Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Trent Daniels and Assistant U.S. Attorney Bryan Achorn prosecuted the case.

This case was prosecuted as part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. The Department of Justice reinvigorated PSN in 2017 as part of the Department’s renewed focus on targeting violent criminals, directing all U.S. Attorney’s Offices to work in partnership with federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement and the local community to develop effective, locally-based strategies to reduce violent crime.

This effort is part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Forces (OCDETF) operation. OCDETF identifies, disrupts, and dismantles the highest-level criminal organizations that threaten the United States using a prosecutor-led, intelligence-driven, multi-agency approach. Additional information about the OCDETF Program can be found at https://www.justice.gov/OCDETF.

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