Susanville man indicted on federal narcotics and firearms charges

A federal grand jury returned a three-count indictment on Thursday, Jan. 5 against Courtney Dale Eames, 55, of Susanville, charging him with possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine, being a felon in possession of a firearm, and possession of stolen firearms, U.S. Attorney Phillip A. Talbert announced.

According to court documents, Susanville Police officers executed search warrants at Eames’ Shasta Street residence Sept. 19, 2016. In the course of the search, the officers found a package of methamphetamine as well as 32 different firearms and several hundred rounds of ammunition.

Charges on the search warrant issued by the Lassen County Superior Court — stemming from a previous and separate incident — included assault with a firearm, shooting at a vehicle and being a felon in possession of a firearm. Eames was taken into custody and held in the Lassen County Jail in lieu of $100,000 bail.

In addition, officers discovered more than 25 marijuana plants growing in the backyard, more than eight ounces of methamphetamine as well as more than $4,500 in cash.

The marijuana plants were removed and destroyed as a city ordinance bans all marijuana grows within the city limits.

This case is the product of an investigation by the FBI and the Susanville Police Department. Assistant U.S. Attorney Owen Roth is prosecuting the case.

If convicted, Eames faces a maximum statutory penalty of 40 years in prison on the methamphetamine charge and a substantial fine. Any sentence, however, would be determined at the discretion of the court after consideration of any applicable statutory factors and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, which take into account a number of variables. The charges are only allegations; the defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.