Texas Jury Sentences Houston Man to 80 Years for Drug Charge

Ben Keller

A Texas jury sentenced a man to 80 years in prison for a drug charge.

A Houston man accused of trying to throw out a bag containing 16 grams of cocaine before a traffic stop was sentenced to 80 years in prison by a jury in Upshur County, Texas.

It all started when Anwar Lamon Holmes, 46, was pulled over by a Texas Department of Public Safety trooper for throwing a beer can from his vehicle, cracking the windshield of another car.

The driver with the broken windshield dialed 911, following Holmes until police arrived, according to the Upshur County District Attorney's Office's press release on November 14.

As a Texas DPS trooper investigated the incident, Holmes attempted to hide a bag of cocaine under his vehicle and was later found to be intoxicated and arrested.

When the trooper inventoried Holmes' car, he discovered the bag of cocaine, which weighed 16.4 grams and had an estimated street value of $1,600.

"As I continue to meet the citizens of Upshur County at various community events, the number one question I am asked is what we plan to do with those who bring drugs into our community," Assistant District Attorney Sarah Cooper said in the release.

"Today, twelve citizens answered that question for me. We do not tolerate the distribution of death and poison in Upshur County, and those who continue to deal in it will not find mercy here."

Relatives of Holmes described him as a hard-working truck driver and a loving man.

Holmes' wife, Tunisha Holmes, said she felt her husband didn't get a fair trial since the jury consisted of 11 white jurors and one black juror.

"I just feel he didn't have a fair trial from day one, because you had 11 white jurors and one black juror," she said.

The family says the sentence doesn't fit the crime and is asking for the conviction to be overturned.

"An 80-year sentence, a justifiable 80-year sentence for a drug possession? Maybe for a kingpin, maybe for El Chapo," community activist Deric Muhammad said about the sentence.

During the punishment phase of Holmes' trial, the state argued Holmes deserved a long sentence since he'd been previously convicted of possession of a controlled substance and possession of a controlled substance with the intent to deliver and assault on a public servant, according to KXXV.

Comments (6)
No. 1-2

In Texas you can be sentenced for up to 99 years for ANY first degree felony, so sometimes you have outliers like this. The last time I went to jury duty, the defendant was facing some felony DWI charges, and he was looking at 25 to 99 years if the prosecution were able to get everything to stick -- and mind you there were no victims and nobody was hurt or anything like that.

From what I could infer from the lawyer's questions to the potential jurors, he had previous convictions and now the chickens were coming home to roost.


Sorry, butthead dope dealer, but if you could get life I’d give it to you. Anyone who deals drugs is directly responsible for destroying the lives of innocent people: the addict’s loved ones. If you haven’t been there, then shut up, because you don’t know what your talking about.

As things stand, the Federal presumed “high” dose for cocaine is 100mg a couple times a day. This perp was carrying 160 doses, enough for two solid months of heavy cocaine use. That’s not a “personal” amount. That’s far into the “intent to distribute” amount. The Federal minimum sentence for that alone is at least 30 years, and 43 years if the cops can identify anyone injured by his drug dealing (not too difficult). If he sold to minors, he can get another 20 years for corruption of a minor. He was a habitual criminal with a long rap sheet, and he also assaulted another driver (cracking the driver’s windshield). I’m frankly surprisd he didn’t get 180 years.

Being a federal crime, he’ll do all the time. Which is justice, because this “hard-working truck driver and loving man” hated other people’s kids enough to enslave them with drugs.

In many other countries, he’d be executed. America is merciful.

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