Drug Trafficker Sentenced to 37 Years in Prison for Supplying Heroin to Chicago’s West Side and Murdering a Federal Informant
CHICAGO — A federal judge has sentenced a violent drug trafficker to 37 years in prison for supplying large amounts of heroin to Chicago’s West Side and murdering a friend who cooperated with law enforcement.
For seven years DAVID PRICE operated a violent drug operation responsible for supplying more than 90 kilograms of heroin to numerous open-air markets. Price used his drug proceeds to fund a lavish lifestyle that included luxury homes in Chicago and the suburbs, high-end vehicles, diamond jewelry and designer fashion. He ruthlessly protected his heroin operation through violence, including by personally murdering a former business partner who cooperated with law enforcement. Price also ordered the murder of another former drug partner, who was shot but survived and testified against Price at trial.
A federal jury in 2014 convicted Price, 38, of Brookfield, on all 13 counts against him, including charges of heroin conspiracy, money laundering and illegally possessing an Uzi-style, semi-automatic pistol with an extended magazine. U.S. District Judge Harry D. Leinenweber imposed the sentence Thursday in federal court in Chicago.
The sentence was announced by Joel R. Levin, Acting United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois; Dennis A. Wichern, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Field Division of the Drug Enforcement Administration; Gabriel L. Grchan, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Internal Revenue Service Criminal Investigation Division in Chicago; Celinez Nunez, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Field Division of the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives; and Eddie T. Johnson, Superintendent of the Chicago Police Department. Substantial assistance was provided by the Woodridge Police Department and the DuPage County Major Crimes Task Force.
“Defendant’s senseless violence was motivated by greed and his love for money,” Assistant U.S. Attorneys Angel M. Krull and Erik Hogstrom argued in the government’s sentencing memorandum. “Defendant is a lifelong criminal, becoming a millionaire by pushing heroin on a suffering community, and putting money, power, and unspeakable violence above his family, above his childhood friends, above his community, and above everything.”
Evidence at trial showed that Price ran the heroin distribution ring from 2005 through 2011. Price used the profits to purchase or lease luxury residences, including a high-rise apartment on South Michigan Avenue in Chicago and homes in Naperville, Country Club Hills, Bolingbrook, Lombard, Darien and Brookfield. Price also owned numerous vehicles, including a Chevrolet Corvette and a Harley-Davidson “Touring” motorcycle.
Price and others involved in the conspiracy used an apartment in the Austin neighborhood to mix heroin with a sleeping pill and package it for sale on the street. Price then “fronted” wholesale quantities of the drug to be sold at locations on the West Side of Chicago, including at open-air drug markets in various neighborhoods. Price shared the profits with supervisors of those locations.
Evidence at trial established that one of the supervisors, James Brown, 35, of Chicago, was wounded in a shooting ordered by Price. Price directed two members of his crew to shoot and kill Brown on Jan. 25, 2008, because Price believed Brown was cooperating with law enforcement. Brown survived the shooting and testified against Price at trial.
After hearing two days of evidence during the sentencing hearing, Judge Leinenweber found that, in addition to ordering Brown’s shooting, Price also personally murdered Greg Holden, a lifelong friend and business partner who cooperated with law enforcement. On Dec. 8, 2011, Price broke into Holden’s apartment in Woodridge and shot him approximately 20 times while Holden was home with his two young daughters.
The federal investigation resulted in the convictions of several other conspirators, including Price’s cousin, KEITH CARR, 35, of Chicago. Carr was sentenced in 2016 to 20 years in prison. Two others, RASHID BOUNDS and CHRISTOPHER SAUNDERS, were convicted at trial and are serving prison terms of 17 and a half years apiece.
Department of Justice
Office of the U.S. Attorney
Northern District of Illinois