2-year Solano meth case ends with 16-year federal prison sentence

By From page A4 | August 21, 2014

FAIRFIELD — Nearly two years after Fairfield Police Detective Patrick High caught up with a major methamphetamine dealer, the dealer was sentenced Wednesday in Sacramento to more than 16 years of federal prison time.

High had been tracking an ex-con, Curtis D. Sanders, 35, on the afternoon of Nov. 26, 2012, when he spotted him leaving a room at a motel in Dixon accompanied by a woman and her 1-year-old child. Sanders and his companions got into a pickup and a Dixon police officer tried to make a traffic stop on the truck, only to watch is speed off.

The officer pursued Sanders, who crashed the truck and took off running, leaving the woman and baby behind. Sanders was rounded up a short time later.

Police found nearly a half-pound of pure crystal methamphetamine and a loaded gun inside Sanders’ wrecked truck. Police found $2,090 in Sanders’ pants pocket.

At the time of his arrest, Sanders had been out of jail on bail after an another methamphetamine-related arrest several weeks earlier in Benicia that included another botched high-speed effort to flee police.

Sanders’ first arrest came after Vallejo cops saw him in his pickup truck rolling through a stop sign in Vallejo. An attempted traffic stop prompted Sanders to speed off, get onto the freeway and take off toward Pleasant Hill at speeds sometimes reaching 100 mph.

Pursuing police while passing through Benicia saw Sanders toss out four plastic bags filled with white powder that police recovered a short time later. Sanders got away from all but one of the pursuing cops who followed him to the front of a school, where Sanders crashed his truck. The plastic bags contained about a quarter-pound of pure crystal methamphetamine.

Sanders’ pair of arrests and the amount of methamphetamine caught the attention of federal authorities. After two months locked up at the Solano County jail, Sanders, who had faced a possible seven-year prison stint, was picked up by U.S. Marshals after federal prosecutors got an indictment for him on drug charges. Sanders was suddenly looking at the possibility of nearly 25 years of federal prison time.

After more than a year of legal wrangling, Sanders pleaded guilty to a pair of felony charges of possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine.

Federal Judge Kimberly J. Mueller sentenced Sander to 16 years and four months in prison, noting that Sanders had been a longtime methamphetamine addict since the death of his mother.

Reach Jess Sullivan at 427-6919 or [email protected] Follow him on Twitter at www.twitter.com/jsullivandr.

Jess Sullivan

Jess has covered the criminal justice system in Solano County for several years. He was an embedded reporter in Iraq in 2003.

Discussion | 8 comments

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  • 2realAugust 21, 2014 - 5:45 am

    How much money did the two year circus cost tax payers?

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  • ThemisAugust 21, 2014 - 6:17 am

    Let me guess, they pled out the child endangerment.

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  • CuriousAugust 21, 2014 - 6:55 am

    Good job Detective High.

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  • TRObserverAugust 21, 2014 - 11:28 am

    Good job? Ruining the lives of nonviolent offenders is an ugly way to spend one's life.

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  • truth'nAugust 21, 2014 - 7:09 am

    ^5 to Law Enforcement for helping get this perp off our streets. What is the name of the woman who put her child in harms way? I'd like to avoid her. Was CPS called for the child? We need to stop giving females an easy out, and start pro-actively protecting the next generation of criminals / welfare babies in the hopes 1 can be saved.

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  • lisaAugust 21, 2014 - 9:54 am

    These females you speak of Truth'N, didn't knock themselves up so lets go after all the dead beat dads while we are at it. Moron.

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  • mikeAugust 21, 2014 - 7:18 pm

    How many got hooked from the first bail out to the next arrest. That's the real question. Our sons and daughters are vulnerable here

    Reply | Report abusive comment
  • Just my opinionAugust 22, 2014 - 12:15 am

    16 years for drugs? Yes hard drugs but I've read articles on ppl getting more time for drug offenses then DUI where death is a result. If a drug dealer can get 16 for supplying drugs to willing adult addicts. Then DUI drivers causing death or just manslaughter period should get at least that and more. Our criminal system needs help.

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