CHARLOTTE, N.C. – U.S. District Judge Kenneth D. Bell sentenced Nathaniel Jerome Steele, 45, of Charlotte, to 10 years in federal prison today, on drug trafficking and gun charges, announced Andrew Murray, U.S. Attorney for the Western District of North Carolina. Steele was also ordered to serve six years under court supervision after he is released from prison.
Vincent C. Pallozzi, Special Agent in Charge of the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), Charlotte Field Division, and Chief Johnny Jennings of the Charlotte Mecklenburg Police Department (CMPD), join U.S. Attorney Murray in making today’s announcement.
According to filed court documents and today’s sentencing hearing, in June 2019, law enforcement became aware that Steele was selling narcotics out of his residence in Charlotte. On June 14, 2019, law enforcement executed a search warrant at Steele’s residence, where they recovered fentanyl, cocaine, crack cocaine, and methamphetamine. Law enforcement also seized a firearm and a loaded high-capacity magazine. Steele has a prior federal firearm conviction and he is prohibited from possessing firearms or ammunition.
On October 14, 2020, Steele pleaded guilty to possession with intent to distribute fentanyl, possession with intent to distribute cocaine, possession with intent to distribute crack cocaine, possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine, and possession of a firearm in furtherance of drug trafficking. He is currently in federal custody and will be transferred to the custody of the federal Bureau of Prisons upon designation of a federal facility.
U.S. Attorney Murray thanks the ATF and CMPD for handling this investigation. Assistant U.S. Attorney Christopher Hess, of the U.S. Attorney’s Office in Charlotte, prosecuted the case.