Fort Smith Woman Sentenced To Over 15 Years In Federal Prison For Drug Trafficking

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FILE PHOTO: Signage is seen at the United States Department of Justice headquarters in Washington, D.C.

FORT SMITH – A Fort Smith woman was sentenced today to 188 months in prison followed by four years of supervised release on one count of Possession with the Intent to Distribute Methamphetamine. The Honorable Judge P.K. Holmes, III, presided over the sentencing hearing in the United States District Court in Fort Smith.

According to court documents, On September 1, 2021, members of the United States Marshals Service (USMS) Fugitive Task Force had information that Cynia Lea Morgan, age 48, was harboring a state fugitive, and that Morgan was at a motel in Fort Smith, Arkansas.

The USMS Fugitive Task Force had information that Morgan had an outstanding warrant, had reason to believe that Morgan may be in possession of controlled substances, and requested the assistance of the Fort Smith Police Department (FSPD) and the Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA).

The USMS Fugitive Task Force made contact with Morgan who was sitting in the driver’s seat of her vehicle in the parking lot of the motel, had her exit the vehicle, and detained her. A male passenger sitting in the front passenger seat was also removed from the vehicle and detained.

A FSPD K-9 officer arrived at the location and assisted with a K-9 search on the vehicle. After receiving a positive alert, a search of the vehicle was conducted. The search resulted in officers locating a purse belonging to Morgan. Inside the purse officers located, a golf ball sized bag of an off-white powder substance suspected to be fentanyl, a baggie of pills suspected to be fentanyl, a golf ball sized bag of suspected black tar heroin, suspected marijuana, a clutch containing $7,251 in United States currency and Morgan’s driver’s license, three cellular phones, and a safe key. Officers also located a safe in the vehicle. Inside the safe officers located multiple baggies containing suspected methamphetamine, two small baggies of unmarked pills suspected to be fentanyl, a prescription bottle containing assorted pills, a pill press, syringes, and other drug paraphernalia.

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While conducting their search, the K-9 officer became unconscious and was experiencing symptoms of fentanyl overdose due to exposure to the fentanyl found in Morgan’s vehicle. The K-9 officer was administered naloxone by fellow officers on scene and received treatment from a Deputy U.S. Marshal who was a member of the fugitive task force and an Operational Medical Support Unit Medic. Their efforts stabilized the K-9 officer until an ambulance and EMTs arrived and transported them to the hospital, where they made a full recovery.

The suspected methamphetamine field-tested positive for methamphetamine and had a gross weight of 129.8 grams. The suspected fentanyl and heroin were not weighed, or field tested. Instead, they were packaged safely to be tested by the DEA Laboratory in a controlled environment along with the methamphetamine

U.S. Attorney David Clay Fowlkes of the Western District of Arkansas made the announcement.

The United States Marshals Services Fugitive Task Force, Fort Smith Police Department and the Drug Enforcement Administration investigated the case.


Assistant U.S. Attorney Aaron Jennen prosecuted the case.