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Press Release

Maysville Man Sentenced to 199 Months for Carjacking and Brandishing a Firearm in Furtherance of a Crime of Violence

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

COVINGTON, Ky. – A Maysville, Kentucky, man, Charles Wesley Bruener III, 33, who previously admitted to carjacking and threatening two individuals with a firearm in the course of the offense was sentenced Friday to 199 months in prison by U.S. District Court Judge David Bunning.          

Bruener previously admitted that, on March 2, 2018, he fled from police in Falmouth, Kentucky, in a Ford Taurus. According to his plea agreement, officers pursued Bruener, and he eventually crashed the vehicle, breaking the hip of his girlfriend, Tiffany Thompson, who was a passenger in the Taurus. Bruener admitted that following the crash, he approached a nearby home, entered without permission, and waved a firearm at the home’s two occupants in order to steal their GMC truck and continue his flight from police. According to his plea agreement, Bruener admitted that when one of the victims in the home initially refused to comply, Bruener struck her, causing minor injuries. Bruener then pointed the gun to threaten a second occupant of the home and obtained the keys to the truck. Bruener and Thompson fled in the stolen truck and crashed it during a second police pursuit, further injuring Thompson’s broken hip. After Bruener and Thompson were arrested, officers recovered two stolen firearms and methamphetamine from the crime scenes. 

Bruner pleaded guilty in September 2019. According to documents filed in the case, Bruener has previously been convicted of felony offenses, including receiving stolen property and robbery.           

Under federal law, Bruener must serve 85 percent of his prison sentence and will be under the supervision of the U.S. Probation Office for 5 years after his release from prison.  The court ordered that the federal sentence run consecutively to the 17 year Kentucky prison term that Bruener is presently serving for other state charges.

Thompson pleaded guilty in October of 2018 to being a convicted felon in possession of a firearm. According to court documents, Thompson has prior convictions for felony drug trafficking and drug possession. She was sentenced in February 2019 to 78 months in prison and 3 years of supervised release. 

Robert M. Duncan, Jr., United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Kentucky, Tommy Estevan, Acting Special Agent in Charge, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and Pendleton County Sheriff Craig Peoples, jointly announced the sentence.

The investigation was conducted by Pendleton County Sheriff’s Office and ATF. The United States was represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Tony Bracke.

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. The PSN program was reinvigorated as part of the Department’s renewed focus on targeting violent criminals, directing all U.S. Attorney’s Offices to work in partnership with federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement and the local community to develop effective, locally-based strategies to reduce violent crime.

This case is also part of Project Guardian, the Department of Justice’s signature initiative to reduce gun violence and enforce federal firearms laws. Initiated by the Attorney General in the fall of 2019, Project Guardian draws upon the Department’s past successful programs to reduce gun violence; enhances coordination of federal, state, local, and tribal authorities in investigating and prosecuting gun crimes; improves information-sharing by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives when a prohibited individual attempts to purchase a firearm and is denied by the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS), to include taking appropriate actions when a prospective purchaser is denied by the NICS for mental health reasons; and ensures that federal resources are directed at the criminals posing the greatest threat to our communities. For more information about Project Guardian, please see

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CONTACT: Gabrielle Dudgeon
PHONE: (859) 685-4887

Updated January 3, 2020

Project Guardian
Project Safe Neighborhoods