CHARLOTTESVILLE, Va. – The former revenue commissioner for Greene County, Va., resigned from his elected office after pleading guilty today in federal court to attempted witness tampering, a felony. His son also pleaded guilty today to a related charge of distributing heroin.
Larry Vernon Snow, 73, pleaded guilty to one count of attempted witness tampering related to his efforts to harass and dissuade a confidential informant from cooperating with a federal investigation into himself and his son, as well as to prevent the confidential informant from assisting the law. execution in other investigations. Bryant Austin Snow, 33, pleaded guilty to a related charge of distributing heroin.
“The former Greene County Revenue Commissioner, an elected official over 30 years, released information throughout his community about a witness assisting law enforcement, all in retaliation against that witness. The department of Justice will hold accountable those who seek to harass, intimidate or retaliate against federal witnesses, and I am grateful for the result achieved today through our investigation,” said U.S. Attorney Christopher R. Kavanaugh.
“Elected officials must hold themselves to a higher standard and serve their communities responsibly. Mr. Snow violated the faith entrusted to him and, along with his son, criminally used the personal information of community members for their own gain,” said Stanley M. Meador, Special Agent in Charge of the Richmond Division of the FBI. “The FBI will continue to work with its partners to investigate cases of witness tampering and is pleased with today’s advocacy change.”
According to court documents, Bryant Snow was arrested and charged with two drug charges by the state in November 2017. The state charges stem from law enforcement’s use of a confidential informant who bought meth and heroin from Bryant Snow. On April 20, 2018, Bryant Snow pleaded guilty to one count of methamphetamine distribution in Greene County, Virginia.
While incarcerated at the Central Virginia Regional Jail (CVRJ), Bryant Snow received documents and other evidence regarding his state case. This information included videos and audio recordings of narcotics purchases recorded by Bryant Snow’s confidential informant. Bryant Snow made numerous calls from prison to his father, Larry Snow, where they discussed their animosity towards confidential informants in general and Person A in particular. For example, Larry Snow told Bryant on a call that “[Person A]will have his, I promise you. Larry Snow then said they should let “everyone know all about it” and “who he is, what he does”, in reference to Person A.
On May 31, 2019, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Western District of Virginia notified Larry and Bryant Snow that they were the target of a federal investigation regarding their conduct towards Person A. After receiving this notice, Larry Snow wrote and had around 12,000 tracts written. be mailed October 2019 to residents of Greene County for the purpose of harassing Person A and obstructing, preventing and deterring Person A from instigating or assisting in any federal prosecutions against the Snows or other people. The leaflets described how the outgoing Greene County Sheriff was using “drug dealers (who are also police informants).” The flyer said, “Specifically, this same drug dealer” was “caught twice” and described the allegedly lenient sentence given to the individual. These comments referred to Person A, whom Larry Snow knew had been cooperating against his son, Bryant. Larry Snow placed his name at the bottom of the leaflets to identify himself as the sender.
In recorded jail calls after the leaflets were distributed, Bryant Snow and Larry Snow discussed the known “drug dealer” in the leaflet and confirmed that it was Person A. Larry Snow concluded the appeal stating, “It’s over there now” because information about Person A’s cooperation with law enforcement had been spread around the county via the fliers.
As part of his guilty plea, Larry Snow resigned from his elected position as Greene County Revenue Commissioner, a position he has held since 1987 and to which he was re-elected while under indictment. a federal indictment. As part of the plea deal, Larry Snow agreed not to run for office during any sentence or period of judicial supervision.
The Snows are due to be sentenced on July 25, 2022 and August 1, 2022 before Senior United States District Court Judge Norman K. Moon.
The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Virginia Department of Motor Vehicles.
Assistant United States Attorney Katie Burroughs Medearis and Ryan S. Faulconer, senior counsel in the Computer Crimes and Intellectual Property Section of the Justice Department’s Criminal Division, are pursuing the case for the United States . Former Assistant United States Attorney Kathryn Rumsey helped prosecute the case.