Tuesday, November 15, 2022, Michael Fitzgerald Thomas, Jr. of Gulfport, was sentenced by Circuit Court Judge Christopher Schmidt sentenced as a habitual offender to 13 years in the custody of the Mississippi Department of Corrections.
A jury found Thomas guilty in October of Trafficking of Spice, Possession of Methamphetamine, Possession of Hydrocodone, and Unlawful Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon.
The case began when the Gulfport Police Department received information from multiple sources that a subject known as “Karate Mike” was selling spice in the City of Gulfport.
Thomas, a/k/a “Karate Mike,” was known to investigators who subsequently began an investigation into his actions. The investigation led to a search warrant being obtained for several storage units rented to the defendant.
“In those storage units, police located a large amount of spice, approximately one dozen guns, along with methamphetamine and hydrocodone,” said Assistant District Attorney Ian Baker, who prosecuted the case along with colleague, Jasmine Magee.
Following his arrest, Thomas provided investigators with a recorded statement, in which Thomas admitted to being in the business of selling narcotics. The jury deliberated for less than an hour, before returning a verdict of guilty on all counts.
Thomas was prosecuted as a habitual offender after it was discovered that Thomas has prior felony convictions for Felony Child Abuse and Conspiracy to Possess with Intent to Sell Crack Cocaine.
After hearing from the parties, Judge Schmidt sentenced Thomas to a total of 13 years to serve in prison. As a habitual offender, Thomas’ sentence will have to be served day-for-day without the possibility of parole or early release.