Large Scale Fentanyl and Cocaine Drug Trafficker Sentenced to 13 Years in Federal Prison
Law Enforcement Seized over $2 Million in Drug-Related Proceeds
Baltimore, Maryland – U.S. District Judge Stephanie A. Gallagher sentenced Steven Bernard Norwood, age 46, of Lutherville, Maryland to 13 years in federal prison, followed by 10 years of supervised release, after he pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute and possess with the intent to distribute five kilograms or more of a mixture containing cocaine, possessing with intent to distribute five kilograms or more of a substance containing cocaine, and possessing with intent to distribute 400 grams of a mixture containing fentanyl.
The guilty plea was announced by Jarod Forget, Special Agent in Charge of the DEA Washington Division; United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Erek L. Barron; Assistant Special Agent in Charge Orville O. Greene of the Drug Enforcement Administration, Baltimore District Office; and Chief Melissa R. Hyatt of the Baltimore County Police Department.
As the result of a Baltimore County Police Department and the Drug Enforcement Administration investigation, it was determined that from March 2019 to July 2020, Norwood acted as a large-scale cocaine and marijuana trafficker within the Baltimore area. Norwood conspired with others to have large quantities of cocaine transported from California to Maryland, where Norwood would further distribute the cocaine.
During the investigation, law enforcement identified an Owings Mills, Maryland apartment which Norwood used to receive, store, and package drugs. Investigators also learned that Norwood’s co-conspirators frequently used hotels in the Owings Mills, Maryland area to carry out drug transactions.
For example, on November 24, 2019, Co-conspirator 1 flew from San Francisco to Baltimore. Upon arrival, Co-conspirator 1 traveled with Norwood to the Owings Mills apartment where investigators saw the men drop off several suitcases. Ultimately, Co-conspirator 1 delivered several kilograms of cocaine to Norwood.
On March 21, 2020, another co-conspirator (Co-conspirator 2) was in the Baltimore area after traveling from San Francisco. Later that evening, one of Norwood’s co-conspirators (Co-conspirator 3) booked a room at a hotel that was used by Co-conspirator 2. After the hotel room was secured, Co-conspirator 2, Norwood, and Co-conspirator 3 were seen entering the Owings Mills apartment. At that time, Co-conspirator 2 was carrying several pieces of luggage. Norwood obtained several kilograms of cocaine during this meeting.
As stated in his plea agreement, on July 13, 2020, Co-conspirator 2 traveled from San Francisco to Maryland and later traveled with Norwood to the Owings Mills apartment. Shortly after their arrival, law enforcement executed a search and seizure warrant at the Owings Mills apartment and a Baltimore storage unit maintained by Norwood.
As a result of the executed search and seizure warrant at the Owings Mills apartment, law enforcement recovered approximately 14 kilograms of cocaine, nearly a kilogram of fentanyl, $369,000 in cash, a 9mm pistol, a money counter, and a boarding pass in Co-conspirator 2’s name. The search and seizure executed at Norwood’s storage unit resulted in the discovery of approximately $1,759, 618 in cash, two .45 caliber pistols, and documents in Norwood’s name. Norwood admits that the $2,128,618 in cash seized from him were proceeds of his drug trafficking activities.
This case is 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. This case is also part of an Organized Crime Drug Enforcement Task Force (OCDETF) investigation.