Two Sentenced for Conspiracy to Distribute Meth

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

United States Attorney Alison J. Ramsdell announced that a Fort Pierre, South Dakota, woman and a Pierre, South Dakota, man both convicted of Conspiracy to Distribute a Controlled Substance were sentenced on June 28, 2022, by Chief Judge Roberto A. Lange, U.S. District Court.

Shannon Spears, age 44, was sentenced to 121 months in federal prison, followed by five years of supervised release.  John Klein, age 45, was sentenced to 20 years in federal prison, followed by five years of supervised release.  Both Spears and Klein were each also ordered to pay a $1,000 fine, and special assessment to the Federal Crime Victims Fund in the amount of $100. 

Klein was indicted by a federal grand jury on July 13, 2021.  He pled guilty on March 24, 2022.  Spears was indicted by a federal grand jury on September 14, 2021.  She pled guilty on March 10, 2022. 

The convictions stem from Klein and Spears conspiring with others to knowingly and intentionally distribute methamphetamine in and around central South Dakota.  Klein utilized sources of supply of methamphetamine from Minnesota and Colorado to bring large amounts of methamphetamine to the Pierre area, where he would utilize individuals, including Spears, to distribute that methamphetamine in and around central South Dakota.  It was reasonably foreseeable that over 500 grams of methamphetamine was distributed during the course of the conspiracy.

Klein’s spouse, Taylor Huemoeller, a/k/a, Taylor Klein, who was also involved in the conspiracy, is set to be sentenced on August 15, 2022.  Randy Little Shield was previously sentenced to 10 years in federal custody for his role in the conspiracy.

This case was investigated by the Northern Plains Safe Trails Drug Enforcement Task Force, the FBI, the South Dakota Highway Patrol, the South Dakota Division of Criminal Investigation, and the Bureau of Indian Affairs.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Meghan Dilges prosecuted the case.

Klein and Spears were both immediately turned over to the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service.