Jul. 11—SIOUX FALLS — An Arizona man will spend the next 25 years in prison after he attempted to sell drugs to an undercover agent during a meth distribution campaign and later assaulted his co-conspirator in jail.
William Stevenson, 56, of Phoenix, Arizona, was sentenced July 5 for conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance and obstructing justice by retaliating against a witness. As part of his conviction, Stevenson will serve 25 years in federal prison, followed by five years of supervised release and make a special assessment of $100 to the Federal Crime Victims Fund.
Beginning on an unknown date and continuing until sometime in January 2021, Stevenson and multiple others came to an agreement to distribute 500 grams or more of methamphetamine in South Dakota and elsewhere.
Stevenson and his co-conspirators brought eight kilograms, or roughly 17.5 pounds, of methamphetamine from Arizona to South Dakota with the intent to distribute it. On Dec. 13, 2020, the group was arrested while attempting to sell the drugs to an undercover agent.
After the group had been booked into jail, Stevenson physically assaulted one of his co-conspirators in retaliation for the co-conspirator providing information about the group's activity to law enforcement.
After being indicted on the charges by a federal grand jury on Jan. 4, and pleading not guilty to the indictment, Stevenson was convicted on both counts in a jury trial at the U.S. District Courthouse in Sioux Falls on April 14.
Stevenson's co-conspirators each pleaded guilty to conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance, and have each already been sentenced.
Edwin Donis-Melgar, 36, of Guatemala, and Luis Hernandez Parra, 35, of Mexico, were sentenced in October 2021 to 10 years in federal prison, followed by five years of supervised release.
Manuel Obregon-Robin, 20, of Sioux Falls, was sentenced on Feb. 28 to 37 months in federal prison, followed by two years of supervised release.
The case was investigated by the South Dakota Division of Criminal Investigation, Sioux Falls Police Department, Minnehaha County Sheriff's Office and the Drug Enforcement Administration.
Following his sentence, Stevenson was immediately remanded to the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service.