U.S. Attorney's Office
District of Vermont
(802) 951-6725
August 13, 2015

New Jersey Man Faces Heroin Charges

The Office of the United States Attorney for the District of Vermont stated that, on August 12, 2015, Jonathan Nisbett, age 23, of Newark, New Jersey, was charged via federal criminal complaint with possessing with intent to distribute heroin. Nisbett made his initial appearance in federal court on August 12, 2015 before U.S. Magistrate Judge John M. Conroy. At that hearing, Judge Conroy scheduled a detention hearing for Monday, August 17, 2015. At the detention hearing, the Court will decide whether Nisbett will be detained pending trial or released to the supervision of the U.S. Probation Office. The U.S. Attorney’s Office has filed a motion asking the Court to detain Nisbett.

According to court records, the Vermont State Police Drug Task Force conducted a lengthy investigation into potential heroin distribution by Nisbett. On the evening of August 11, 2015, Vermont State Police officers arrested Nisbett at the Amtrak train station in Essex Junction, Vermont after Nisbett arrived in a train from New York City. In Nisbett’s bag, officers found approximately 2,250 bags of heroin. Colonel Matthew Birmingham of the Vermont State Police praised the work of the Drug Task Force, noting that Nisbett’s arrest was the culmination of many months of work by the local, state, and federal agents and officers assigned to the Task Force.

If convicted on the current charge, Nisbett would face a statutory maximum term of 20 years in prison. His actual sentence would be determined with reference to the federal sentencing guidelines. United States Attorney Eric Miller emphasized that the charge in the criminal complaint is only an accusation and Nisbett is presumed innocent unless and until he is proven guilty.

United States Attorney Miller added, “This case is a perfect example of federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies working hand-in-hand to combat heroin distribution in Vermont.” Miller commended the efforts of the agencies involved in investigating heroin crimes, which include the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco Firearms and Explosives, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Homeland Security Investigations, the Vermont State Police Drug Task Force, and the Burlington Police Department.

The prosecution is being handled by Assistant U.S. Attorney Timothy C. Doherty, Jr. Nisbett is represented by David McColgin of the Federal Public Defender’s Office.

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