Tuesday, July 14, 2009

Putnam County Man Given 325-Year Sentence

A Putnam County man will be spending the rest of his life in jail after being sentenced Tuesday in federal court. William Vincent Dunn, 34, of Baxter, was sentenced by U.S. District Chief Judge Todd Campbell to 325 years in prison for soliciting the murders of a Putnam County sheriff’s deputy, a special agent with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), and an informant. According to a press release from the U.S. Attorney’s office, a federal jury in Nashville found Dunn guilty back in November on all counts of a 21-count indictment, including the solicitation to murder law enforcement officers; possessing a machine gun, as well as another firearm, in furtherance of drug trafficking; conspiracy charges; attempts to obstruct justice; and possessing and distributing marijuana and cocaine. According to the press release, proof at trial revealed Dunn and his girlfriend, Misty Langford, had been selling cocaine and marijuana to an undercover Putnam County sheriff’s deputy and a confidential informant. Through discovery proceedings after their arrests, Dunn and Langford learned the true identity of the confidential informant and the undercover sheriff’s deputy. The informant subsequently died from a drug overdose and Dunn and Langford determined that, if the undercover sheriff’s deputy died, there would be no other witnesses to testify against them. The press release stated as part of the investigation into the initial murder plot, another confidential informant introduced an undercover ATF agent to Langford and Dunn as the purported “hit man.” Dunn agreed to pay $15,000 to the “hit man” for the murder of the undercover sheriff’s deputy and provided the “hit man” $300 and approximately 15 grams in cocaine as a down payment. Later that day, Dunn and Langford were arrested. While in federal custody awaiting trial, Dunn learned the identity of the undercover ATF agent and the second confidential informant. Dunn then initiated another plan to have the sheriff’s deputy, the undercover ATF agent, and the confidential informant murdered. He solicited a cellmate to commit the murders, promising him drugs and cash as payment. Dunn orchestrated the second murder plot through a series of letters from prison. According to the press release, Judge Campbell’s sentence guarantees Dunn will never again be free to plan and commit crimes such as these. Meawnhile, according to the release, in December 2008, Misty Langford pleaded guilty to conspiring to commit murder for hire in U.S. District Court and was sentenced to 75 months imprisonment.