Biden Pardons Athens Man Convicted for Facilitating Drug Trafficking

An Athens man who was convicted for the facilitation of drug trafficking was pardoned Tuesday by President Joe Biden.

“Dexter Jackson is a 52-year-old man who was convicted in 2002 for using his business to facilitate the distribution of marijuana in the Northern District of Georgia,” according to a statement from the White House. “Mr. Jackson was not personally involved in trafficking marijuana, but allowed marijuana distributors to use his pool hall to facilitate drug transactions. He accepted full responsibility for his actions at the time he was charged, and pled guilty.”

“Since his release from custody, Mr. Jackson has converted his business into a cell-phone repair service and hired local high school students through a program that seeks to provide young adults with work experience,” that statement said. “Mr. Jackson has also worked to build and renovate homes in a community that lacks quality affordable housing.”

Jackson is part of Biden’s first acts of clemency as president.

Those acts of clemency also included 75 sentencing commutations, mostly for drug offenses.

Included in the 75 commutations were seven Georgians.

Tellas Levallas Kennedy of Glenville was convicted for conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute, and to distribute a quantity of cocaine hydrochloride, and began serving a 210 month – 17.5 year – sentence in 2013. That sentence was later amended to about 12 years. Kennedy will be released in 10 years thanks to Biden’s commutation.

All of the commutations take effect on April 26, 2023.

Carry Le of Duluth was convicted of conspiracy to possess with intent to distribute 1,000 or more marijuana plants. She began serving a 10-year prison term in 2016, but will also be released in 2023.

Stephanie McMurphy of Adel was convicted in 2018 of distribution of methamphetamine within 1,000 feet of a school, and sentenced to just over nine years in prison. She will be released next April.

So will Rickey Wayne Norton of Augusta, convicted of possession with intent to distribute a controlled substance. He began serving his time in 2017 after being sentenced to 10 years in prison, but will be released four years early thanks to Biden’s clemency.

Norton’s wife, Shannon Ann Norton, was his co-defendant in the case. She was sentenced to the same amount of prison time for the same crime, and will also be released from prison next April.

Tony Lee Stanfield of Villa Rica was convicted in possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine in 2017. He was set to serve 10 years in prison, but will also be released four years early.

Finally, Courtney Dannell Zeno of Warner Robbins also had her sentence commuted. She was convicted of five counts of distribution of cocaine base and possession with intent to distribute cocaine base, and sentenced to life in prison, which was later amended to 20 years. She began serving that sentence in 2013, and will be released 10 years early thanks to Biden’s commutation.

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Pete D’Abrosca is a reporter at The Georgia Star News and The Star News Network. Email tips to [email protected].
Photo “Joe Biden” by The White House.



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