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Press Release

Bridgeport Man Sentenced to 22 Years in Federal Prison for Murder

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Connecticut

JOHNNIE JEFFERSON, also known as “Jeezy,” 24, of Bridgeport, was sentenced today by U.S. District Judge Michael P. Shea in Hartford to 264 months of imprisonment, followed by five years of supervised release, for his involvement in the October 2012 murder of Dawayne Cobb in Bridgeport.

According to court documents and statements made in court, JEFFERSON and Trumaine Hearst devised a plan to rob Dawayne Cobb of marijuana.  On October 10, 2012, JEFFERSON and Hearst drove to the vicinity of 220 Sunshine Circle to meet Cobb and robbed from him at gunpoint a jar containing approximately two ounces of marijuana.  Although Cobb offered no resistance, Hearst shot him twice.  JEFFERSON and Hearst transported the stolen marijuana to a Bridgeport residence and subsequently distributed it amongst themselves and others.

Later that day, Cobb was discovered in the driver seat of his idling vehicle.  He had gunshot wounds in his shoulder and abdomen.

“The U.S. Attorney’s Office remains committed to addressing violence in the inner city whenever and wherever it appears,” stated U.S. Attorney Deirdre M. Daly.  “We stand shoulder to shoulder with local police departments and the FBI in prioritizing those responsible for gun violence.  Our hearts go out to the family of Dawayne Cobb for their tragic loss.  This young man was struck down in the prime of his life over a small amount of marijuana. This sentence makes clear that defendants responsible for such lawless cruelty will be held accountable.”

“Today’s sentencing serves to warn those engaged in violent criminal activity that the Safe Streets Task Force is committed to bringing violent offenders to justice,” stated FBI Special Agent in Charge Patricia M. Ferrick.  “We have zero tolerance for gun violence, and we will continue to work side by side with our law enforcement partners so that tragedies like this will one day become obsolete.”

“Today sends a clear message that gun violence won’t ever be tolerated in Bridgeport, and the people who commit it will face the consequences,” stated Bridgeport Police Chief Joseph L. Gaudett, Jr.  “Our detectives did outstanding work in this case to bring justice to Mr. Cobb’s family and work closely with both state and federal prosecutors to ensure that criminals are held accountable to the highest level when they commit gun violence in our city.  We owe that and more to the kids and families who live, work and play in Bridgeport every day.”

On November 3, 2014, JEFFERSON pleaded guilty to one count of causing the death of Dawayne Cobb through the use of a firearm.

Hearst pleaded guilty to the same charge on November 10, 2014.  On May 19, 2015, he was sentenced to 28 years of imprisonment.

JEFFERSON and Hearst have been detained since July 16, 2013.

U.S. Attorney Daly noted that federal prisoners are required to serve at least 85 percent of their sentenced term of imprisonment and are not eligible for parole.

This matter was investigated by Bridgeport Police Department and the FBI’s Bridgeport Safe Streets Task Force.  The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Tracy Dayton and Rahul Kale.

Updated June 23, 2015