Robert J. Rideout Sentenced for Drug Trafficking Offense

Vermont Resident, Robert J. Rideout Sentenced for Drug Trafficking Offense

The Office of the United States Attorney for the District of Vermont stated that on July 6, 2022, Robert J. Rideout, 59, formerly of Winooski, was sentenced in United States District Court in Rutland, Vermont, to serve 60 months in prison upon his conviction of possession with intent to distribute 500 grams or more of cocaine. Rideout had pleaded guilty to the offense on January 7, 2022, pursuant to a plea agreement with the United States. Chief U.S. District Judge Geoffrey W. Crawford also ordered Rideout to serve a four-year term of supervised release and to pay a $100 special assessment.

According to court records and proceedings, on July 14, 2021, agents with Homeland Security Investigations (HSI), in conjunction with the Vermont State Police (VSP), stopped Rideout along Interstate 89 in Vermont while he was driving back from Springfield, Massachusetts. Investigators located and seized a backpack containing approximately 1.5 kilograms of cocaine and over 4,500 “tickets” (individual glassine baggies) that contained approximately 130 grams of fentanyl in total.

Rideout, in conjunction with another individual, had acquired the controlled substances in Springfield and was transporting them back to Burlington. Rideout intended to transfer a substantial portion of the controlled substances to a third individual in the Burlington area upon his return. The other two individuals are charged in a separate federal case that currently remains pending.

United States Attorney Nikolas P. Kerest commended the joint efforts of HSI and VSP—as well as the assistance of the Berlin Police Department, the South Burlington Police Department, the Drug Enforcement Administration, and the United States Marshals Service—in the investigation and prosecution of Rideout and others in the case.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Matthew Lasher prosecuted the case for the United States. Assistant Federal Public Defender Sara Puls represented Rideout.