MARCH 19 (BURLINGTON, Vt.) - John J. Arvanitis, Special Agent in Charge of the Drug Enforcement Administration for New England and the Office of the United States Attorney for the District of Vermont announced that William G. Parker, 35, of North Carolina, was sentenced yesterday to 150 months in prison, having pled guilty to one count of conspiracy to distribute 28 grams or more of cocaine base in the Burlington area. Parker received a concurrent sentence of 6 months’ imprisonment for a separate conviction for assaulting a police officer in the post office on Elmwood Avenue in Burlington. The Honorable William K. Sessions, III, sitting in Burlington, also sentenced Parker to four years of supervised release.
Court records indicate that Parker and several coconspirators with ties to North Carolina, New York, and Georgia distributed crack cocaine in and around Burlington from about June of 2011 through February 2012. Parker also sold heroin in Chittenden County. In September 2011, Burlington police arrested Parker and charged him in Vermont State Court with felony narcotics offenses. Parker bailed out of jail and resumed selling crack cocaine in the Burlington area, until his arrest on February 2, 2012, which was followed by federal charges.
Parker’s second arrest occurred in the post office on Elmwood Avenue. During the arrest, Parker punched lead Detective Daniel Merchand in the head several times. As a result, Detective Merchand was taken to the emergency room, where he was treated for a concussion and other injuries. Court records show that Parker has an extensive criminal record out of North Carolina, including prior convictions for narcotics offenses and crimes of violence.
Parker faced a maximum sentence of 40 years in prison for the drug conspiracy and up to 6 months in prison for the assault. In sentencing Parker, Judge Sessions cited the serious nature of his offenses, including his use of violence.
The investigation was led by the Burlington Police Department, and assisted by the Drug Enforcement Administration.