Chattanooga Man With 23 Felonies Gets 15 Years In Federal Prison

Thursday, April 24, 2014

A Chattanooga man who prosecutors say has 40 prior convictions, including 23 felonies, was sentenced on Thursday to 15 years in federal prison.

Darien Houston, 43, appeared before Judge Curtis Collier.

Prosecutor Chris Poole had asked for the high end of the range - 220 months, saying Houston is a member of the Vice Lords gang. He said the felonies include burglary, possession of cocaine for resale, possession of marijuana for resale, felony escape, forgery, theft of property and concealing stolen property, among others.

Houston said he wanted to withdraw his earlier guilty plea to being a felon in possession of a weapon, but the judge would not allow it.

After his federal arrest, Houston met guidelines of being an armed career criminal. That carries a minimum of 15 years.

On May 31, 2012, the Chattanooga Police Department arrested Houston after a search warrant was executed at his residence. The search revealed approximately seven grams of marijuana, drug paraphernalia, a pistol magazine with .45 caliber ammunition, and a Smith & Wesson 38 Special caliber revolver. 

Houston initially denied having any knowledge of the revolver but later consented to an interview. Houston admitted to knowing the revolver was in the residence and handling it.

His prior felony convictions include two counts of possession of cocaine for resale, second-degree burglary, escape, possession of marijuana for resale, reckless endangerment, concealing stolen property, forgery and theft of property.

In 2006, police were called to North Hickory Street after Jeri Houston said her ex-husband, Darien Houston, was back bothering her again. She said this time he broke out her two bedroom windows and slashed two of her tires.

An officer said while he was interviewing Ms. Houston, Darien Houston called twice. While getting warrants against him, Ms. Houston called and said he was back. Officers went to the scene and spotted him, then gave chase. He kept running and jumping over fences, but was finally caught and charged.

At the time it was also found he had outstanding warrants for aggravated burglary, theft over $500 and vandalism. 

U.S. Attorney Bill Killian praised the efforts of the law enforcement agencies involved in the investigation. 

He said, “Thanks to their dedication and cooperation, a career criminal will serve a lengthy sentence in federal prison."

ATF Special Agent in Charge Jeff Fulton said, “The success of this investigation is a result of the collaborative efforts of ATF and our local partners. This investigation is more evidence that ATF's commitment to combating violent crime is unwavering. ATF's Frontline strategy utilizes every available resource to make our communities a safer place to live."
 
Agencies involved in the investigation which led to the indictment and conviction of Houston included the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) and the Chattanooga Police Department. 

 


 


Many Waldens Ridge Scenes Featured In Stokes Picture Book

A number of early views of Waldens Ridge are among the rarities found in the Stokes Photo Collection. There are many photos of the roads up the mountain showing streetcars, wagons and early autos. There are scenes at Rainbow Lake, Falling Water Falls, Signal Point and other scenic spots. Several photos are included of the Signal Mountain Hotel. The more than 700 photos ... (click for more)

Latest Hamilton County Jail Booking Report - And Mug Shots

Here is the latest jail booking report from Hamilton County: AMEZCUA, NICOLE RENEE WHITWORTH WOMENS FACILITY HARTWELL, 30643 36 Hamilton County THEFT UNDER $500 CRIMINAL TRESPASSING CRIMINAL TRESPASSING AGGRAVATED CRIMINAL TRESSPASS THEFT OF PROPERTY THEFT UNDER 500 THEFT OF PROPERTY OVER 500 ATCHLEY, ORBAN EDWARD 165 ELM STREET SOUTH PITTSBURG, ... (click for more)

Chattanooga Has Lost Its Most Popular Citizen - Luther Masingill - And Response

Chattanooga has lost its most popular citizen – Luther Masingill. Although we are saddened we cherish the memories.  All of us have a Luther story.  Mine is the first time I met Luther.  This was before TV and all of Chattanooga listened to Luther on the radio.  I was 12-years-old.  Some of my buddies and I had gone to the State Theater in downtown ... (click for more)

Roy Exum: My Dear Friend Luther

One sunny morning in June years ago, the renowned radio icon Luther Masingill was on his way back to the WDEF studios on South Broad Street when he stopped for a red light and noticed a young couple in a car idling next to his familiar light blue Ford pickup. “What caught my eye was a buck-toothed boy eating a banana in the back seat,” he explained in an aside to that day’s lunchtime ... (click for more)

Signal Mountain Falls In State Volleyball Semis

SMYRNA, Tenn. – It’s a good thing that Signal Mountain volleyball coach Jennifer Redman is a young lady because her heart might not be able to stand the pressure if she wasn’t. Redman’s Lady Eagles were thisclose to being sent to the loser’s bracket in the opening round of the State Volleyball Tournament here at Stewarts Creek High School Wednesday afternoon. Had it been a ... (click for more)

Boyd-Buchanan Sweeps Loretto To Open Class A State Volleyball

MURFREESBORO, Tenn. – Playing what coach Alfie Dodd called a sub-par match, Boyd-Buchanan’s Lady Bucs were still good enough to sweep Loretto, 3-0, Wednesday morning in the opening match of the Tennessee Secondary School Athletic Association’s Class A state volleyball tournament at Blackman High School. Set scores were 25-19, 25-14, 25-20. “We advance and we know we can ... (click for more)