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Jefferson County Man Accused of Animal Abuse gets Prison Time for Unrelated Charge

(St. Louis) A man accused of animal abuse out of Jefferson County received a prison sentence today on an unrelated federal charge.

A news release from the U.S. Department of Justice says 40-year-old Paul “Paco” Garcia of Barnhart was given ten years in a federal prison for being a felon in possession of a firearm.

The plea agreement says law enforcement agents with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office began investigating Garcia in August of 2018 for trafficking methamphetamine in Jefferson County and the surrounding area.

On September 14th, 2018, a Jefferson County police officer stopped Garcia for speeding near double ‘M’ Highway at the Old Highway 21 interchange.

The officer asked Garcia to step out of the vehicle and subsequently observed Garcia appearing to reach for a baseball bat located in the car.

When officers searched the car they located a silver baseball bat and a firearm in the glove compartment.

The firearm was a Rock Island Armory .38 Special revolver.

A further search of the car revealed a small black bag containing metal knuckles and rounds for the .38.

Police say Garcia told them he kept the revolver in his glove box for protection in connection with his methamphetamine trafficking activities.

Garcia remains charged in Jefferson County by the State of Missouri with 2nd degree animal abuse and armed criminal action.

Those charges stem from allegations that Garcia threw a dog from his car window after binding its muzzle and legs with tape in February of 2019.

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