A heroin trafficker who sold drugs in an open-air market along Atlanta’s English Avenue is headed to federal prison, officials say.
Shantuan Daniel, 25, was already a convicted felon when he threatened an Atlanta police officer with a gun in 2015 as he escaped arrest for selling heroin to an undercover officer, U.S. District Attorney John Horn said in a news release.
He remained a fugitive for more than a year, until he was arrested on April 7, 2016, driving a car full of heroin and carrying a stolen firearm, Horn said.
Daniel was sentenced on Monday to five years and three months in federal prison as part of the district’s Drug Market Initiative, an on-going commitment to eradicate the heroin market in Atlanta’s English Avenue neighborhood.
Horn called the conviction an important win for the community. Since the summer of 2015, more than 60 heroin traffickers have faced federal charges, Horn said.
The idea behind the initiative is to make a neighborhood safer by dismantling what experts call its “open-air drug markets,” which are places where dealers set up shop on street corners and sell out in the open, The Atlanta Journal-Constitution previously reported. These markets foster the kind of violence that makes residents afraid to sit on their own porches, experts say.
Alcohol Tobacco Firearms and Explosives agent Wayne Dixie said Daniel’s sentence is a reminder that ATF and our law enforcement partners will hold individuals accountable for any criminal behavior.
“Especially that which threatens the safety of innocent civilians,” Dixie said.
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