DOJ Seal Department of Justice  

United States Attorney John M. Bales
Eastern District of Texas

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE                                               CONTACT:  DAVILYN WALSTON
THURSDAY, SEPTEMBER 2, 2010                                     PUBLIC INFORMATION OFFICER                                                                    DIRECT: (409) 981-7902
                                                                                                                       CELL: (409) 553-9881


BEAUMONT, Texas - A 32-year-old Liberty, Texas man has pleaded guilty to federal firearms violations in the Eastern District of Texas announced U.S. Attorney John M. Bales today.

            Brad Wayne Keaton pleaded guilty to being a felon in possession of ammunition today before U.S. District Judge Ron Clark.

According to information presented in court, on Sep. 24, 2009, Keaton was stopped by law enforcement officers for a traffic violation in Liberty County, Texas.  After Keaton was arrested for driving without a valid driver's license, it was discovered that there were numerous rounds of ammunition in Keaton's vehicle.  Further investigation revealed Keaton was a convicted felon, having previously been found guilty in 2004 of assaulting a public servant in Liberty County, in 1996 of engaging in organized criminal activity in Liberty County, and in 1996 of robbery in Harris County, Texas.  As a convicted felon, Keaton is prohibited by federal law from owning or possessing firearms or ammunition.  Keaton was indicted by a federal grand jury on July 7, 2010.

Keaton faces up to 10 years in federal prison at sentencing.  A sentencing date has not been set.
This case is being prosecuted as part of the Project Safe Neighborhoods Initiative. Project Safe Neighborhoods is aimed at reducing gun and gang violence, deterring illegal possession of guns, ammunition and body armor, and improving the safety of residents in the Eastern District of Texas. Participants in the initiative include community members and organizations as well as federal, state and local law enforcement agencies.
            This case was investigated by the Liberty County Sheriff's Office and the ATF and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney John B. Ross.


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