August 08, 2019
Contact: Cori Rizman
Phone Number: (312) 353-7875
Eau Claire man sentenced to seven years in federal prison for possessing methamphetamine for sale
MADISON, Wis. – Brian M. McKnight, Special Agent in Charge of the United States Drug Enforcement Administration, and Scott C. Blader, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of Wisconsin, announced that Manuel Small, 48, of Eau Claire, Wisconsin was sentenced today by U.S. District Judge James D. Peterson to seven years in federal prison for possessing methamphetamine with the intent to sell it. Small pleaded guilty to this charge on April 17, 2019.
Small was arrested in Eau Claire on July 30, 2018, after officers searched his hotel room and found over 50 grams of methamphetamine packaged for resale. Officers had been surveilling the room a few days before the search and watched numerous individuals visit the room. Officers received information that Small was selling methamphetamine out of that room during that time.
In sentencing Small, Judge Peterson considered the amount of methamphetamine involved, the fact that Small involved others to deal for him, and Small’s extensive and serious criminal history, including several convictions for domestic violence. Judge Peterson was also concerned that Small’s criminal history began later in life, when he was in his 30’s, and continued until his arrest at an age one would expect to see criminal behavior begin to subside. Judge Peterson nonetheless saw the potential for Small to be law abiding, if he could address his substance abuse and anger issues.
The charge against Manuel Small was the result of an investigation conducted by the Eau Claire Police Department and the DEA. The prosecution of the case has been handled by Assistant U.S. Attorney Laura A. Przybylinski Finn.