Drug Bust in Pontoon Beach Leads to 7-Year Prison Term for St. Louis Man
PONTOON BEACH, Ill. – A St. Louis man who tried to buy cocaine in Illinois has been sentenced to 87 months in prison.
Steve P. Kennedy, 51, appeared at the federal courthouse in East St. Louis on Tuesday and was sentenced for attempting to possess with the intent to distribute cocaine, possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime, and being a felon in possession of a firearm. Kennedy pled guilty to the charges in May.
The offenses all occurred on August 12, 2020, when, according to court documents, Kennedy and a co-defendant, Stephen Brown, drove to a restaurant in Pontoon Beach, Illinois, intending to purchase two kilograms of cocaine. The man they were meeting was a confidential source working at the direction of law enforcement. Drug Enforcement Administration agents arrested Kennedy and Brown at the restaurant shortly after they arrived.
At the time of his arrest, Kennedy was carrying a .22 caliber semi-automatic pistol with an attached silencer and seven loaded magazines, along with $33,000 in cash. Kennedy has a prior felony drug conviction from Mississippi that prohibits him from lawfully possessing a gun.
Brown had another $5,000 in his car and was also charged. His sentencing will be held in October.
As part of the sentence, Chief U.S. District Judge Nancy J. Rosenstengel ordered Kennedy to forfeit his interest in the seized cash, pay a $150 fine, and serve a 3-year term of supervised release.
The case was investigated by DEA Fairview Heights Resident Office.