On Wednesday, October 24, 2018, CHRISTOPHER AXTELL, d/o/b 4-21-1972, of Branson, entered guilty pleas to trafficking drugs in the second degree, two (2) counts of delivery of a controlled substance, and two (2) counts of unlawful possession of a firearm, in the Circuit Court of Taney County. Associate Circuit Judge Eric Eighmy accepted Axtell’s guilty pleas and sentenced Axtell to twenty (20) years in prison for trafficking drugs in the second degree, and ten (10) years in prison for each of the other counts, pursuant to Axtell’s plea agreement with the Taney County Prosecutor’s Office. Axtell’s sentences are to run concurrently.

The charges stemmed from an investigation by narcotics investigators with the Branson Police Department, which led to the execution of a search warrant at a home on Wilshire Drive, in Branson, on February 2, 2018. Investigators determined that Axtell had been distributing drugs from that address, and upon searching the residence Branson Police discovered large amounts of methamphetamine, marijuana, and narcotics edibles hidden in the home. Axtell cooperated with Branson Police in opening a safe he had in the residence. In a safe with some of the narcotics were two (2) handguns – which Axtell was prohibited from possessing, due to already being a convicted felon.

Axtell was charged by the Taney County Prosecutor’s Office as a prior and persistent felony offender, due to having at least two (2) prior felony convictions. Axtell was also charged as a prior and persistent drug offender, which enhanced Axtell’s possible maximum sentence to a term of imprisonment not to exceed thirty (30) years or life.