Four Men Indicted For Illegal Firearms Possession, Drugs

Four men indicted in federal court for illegal firearms possession, drugs

Multiple defendants sentened or await court dates in Southern District

(STL.News) Four defendants are among those facing federal charges including drug trafficking and illegal possession of firearms after separate indictments by a grand jury in the Southern District of Georgia, while recent actions in U.S. District Court include guilty pleas and criminal sentences related to illegal gun possession.

The indicted cases are being investigated as part of Project Safe Neighborhoods in collaboration with federal, state and local law enforcement agencies, including the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), the FBI and the Drug Enforcement Administration, to reduce violent crime with measures that include targeting convicted felons who illegally carry guns.

“In our continuing battle against violent crime in the Southern District, an essential element is the removal of guns from the hands of convicted felons,” said David H. Estes, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Georgia. “The message is clear: We and our law enforcement partner will not tolerate these threats to our communities.”

In the past four years, more than 760 defendants have been federally charged in the Southern District of Georgia for illegal firearms offenses – most often for possessing a firearm after conviction for a previous felony.

Defendants named in federal indictments from the June 2022 term of the U.S. District Court grand jury include:

  • Deon Brown, 30, of Augusta, charged with Possession with Intent to Distribute Heroin, Cocaine, Crack Cocaine, and Methamphetamine; Possession of a Firearm in Furtherance of a Drug Trafficking Crime; and Possession of Firearms by a Convicted Felon;
  • Alonzo Ware Henderson, 37, of Augusta, charged with Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon;
  • Cody Truitt Devore, 23, of Sylvania, Ga., charged with Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon; and,
  • Harry Telfair, 60, of Savannah, charged with Possession of a Firearm and Ammunition by a Convicted Felon.

Criminal indictments contain only charges; defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

Additional defendants recently have been adjudicated on federal charges that include illegal firearms possession:

B’Quan Ferguson, 31, of Savannah, was sentenced to 180 months in prison followed by five years of supervised release after pleading guilty to Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon. Savannah Police officers found a pistol in Ferguson’s car during an October 2020 traffic stop. Ferguson has multiple prior state felony convictions, including violent felonies with firearms.

Kenya Leon Parker, 33, of Savannah, was sentenced to 115 months in prison followed by three years of supervised release after pleading guilty to Possession of a Stolen Firearm. Savannah Police officers arrested Parker in February 2021 after finding a pistol in his possession during a traffic stop.

Tommy Greene, 34, of Savannah, was sentenced to 84 months in prison followed by three years of supervised release after pleading guilty to Possession with Intent to Distribute Eutylone (Bath Salts) and Methamphetamine, and Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon. The Savannah Police Department Violent Savannah Police officers arrested Bennett in January 2020 when they found him in possession of two pistols during a traffic stop.

Rasheen Dyshawn Stephens, 30, of Savannah, was sentenced to 60 months in prison followed by three years of release after pleading guilty to Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon. Savannah Police officers investigating a domestic disturbance on June 7, 2021, found a pistol and an extended magazine in Stephens’ pockets.

James Kenneth Merritt, 35, of Waynesboro, Ga., was sentenced to 54 months in prison followed by three years of supervised release and fined $1,000 after pleading guilty to Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon. Burke County Sheriff’s deputies arrested Merritt in December 2020 after Merritt drove away and then ran from an attempted traffic stop, dropping a pistol as he fled.

Calvin Jerrod Hendrix, 24, of Savannah, was sentenced to 51 months in prison followed by three years of supervised release after pleading guilty to Possession of a Stolen Firearm. He was charged after Savannah Police officers found a pistol in his apartment in July 2020, and learned the gun had been stolen in Clayton County.

Hunter Cole Reavis, 25, of Savannah, was sentenced to 44 months in prison followed by three years of supervised release after pleading guilty to Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon. Reavis was on probation in March 2021 when agents from the Georgia Department of Community Supervision found a pistol during a search of his Savannah hotel room.

Jervario Melton, 30, of Kingsland, Ga., was sentenced to 46 months in prison followed by three years of supervised release after pleading guilty to Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon. Melton was found in possession of a firearm during an Aug. 28, 2020, traffic stop by Port Wentworth police.

Fredrick Connell Blount, 38, of Augusta, was sentenced to 42 months in prison and ordered to serve three years of supervised release and fined $1,500 after pleading guilty to Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon. Blount was arrested after a traffic stop in August 2020 when Richmond County Sheriff’s deputies found a pistol in the vehicle Blount was driving.

Barry McCormick, 26, of Savannah, was sentenced to 24 months in prison followed by three years of supervised release after pleading guilty to Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon. McCormick was charged after a pistol fell down his pants leg during a November 2020 traffic stop by Savannah Police officers.

David McCain III, 35, of Hephzibah, Ga., was sentenced to 24 months in prison followed by three years of supervised release and fined $1,500 after pleading guilty to Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon. He was arrested on New Year’s Day 2020 when Richmond County Sheriff’s deputies investigating reports of celebratory gunfire found McCain, a convicted felon, in possession of an AR-15 style rifle with a high-capacity magazine.

Ziquane Sandford, 24, of Hephzibah, awaits sentencing after pleading guilty to Engaging in the Business of Dealing in Firearms Without a License. Sandford faces a statutory sentence of up to five years in prison after admitting he sold firearms on four occasions without the required license.

Willie Joe Liddell, 38, of Augusta, awaits sentencing after pleading guilty to Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon. Richmond County Sheriff’s deputies were assisting the U.S. Marshals Service in arresting Liddell on an outstanding warrant when they discovered a pistol in Liddell’s jacket pocket.

Kevin Shawn McGahee, 47, of Stapleton, Ga., awaits sentencing after pleading guilty to Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon. As part of his plea agreement, McGahee forfeits 21 guns found during a law enforcement search of his residence in April.

Agencies investigating these cases include the ATF, the DEA, the Georgia Bureau of Investigation, the Savannah Police Department, and the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office.

The cases are being prosecuted for the United States by Southern District U.S. Attorney’s Office Assistant U.S. Attorneys, including Jeremiah L. Johnson, Henry W. Syms Jr., and Tania D. Groover, with firearms forfeitures coordinated through the Southern District of Georgia U.S. Attorney’s Office Asset Recovery Unit.

Under federal law, it is illegal for an individual to possess a firearm if he or she falls into one of nine prohibited categories including being a felon; illegal alien; or unlawful user of a controlled substance. Further, it is unlawful to possess a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking offense or violent crime. It is also illegal to purchase – or even to attempt to purchase – firearms if the buyer is a prohibited person or illegally purchasing a firearm on behalf of others. Lying on ATF Form 4473, which is used to lawfully purchase a firearm, also is a federal offense.

SOURCE: USDOJ.Today