Trigger Man in Wilmington Funeral Home Shooting Sentenced to More Than 19 Years for Drug and Gun Charges
GREENVILLE – The United States Attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina, Robert J. Higdon, Jr., announced that today in federal court, Senior United States District Judge Malcolm J. Howard sentenced RODERICK MCNEILL, 23, of Lumberton, North Carolina to 40 months of imprisonment followed by 3 years of supervised release.
MCNEILL was named in an Indictment on June 22, 2017. On March 12, 2018, MCNEILL pled guilty to one-count of Possession of an Unregistered Firearm.
On April 4, 2016, Lumberton Police Department officers responded to a complaint of shots fired in the vicinity of a business which had both a restaurant and convenience store in the same building. Upon their arrival, investigators recovered a sawed-off, 8-inch long, Braztech 20 gauge shotgun, which was thrown on the roof of a church by MCNEILL. The shotgun had a makeshift pistol grip attached to the action and barrel, which was wrapped in electrical tape. No serial number was visible on the shotgun and it was loaded with one live 20 gauge shotgun round. Investigators also discovered 3 rounds of .38 special caliber ammunition, one additional 20 gauge shotgun round, and a metal adapter which was designed to fit into the chamber of the shotgun in order to allow it to fire .38 special caliber ammunition.
On November 7, 2016, MCNEILL was arrested at his home in Lumberton on numerous outstanding warrants for charges that included conduct related to the possession of a sawed-off shotgun on April 4, 2016.
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. Attorney General Jeff Sessions reinvigorated PSN in 2017 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.
In support of PSN, the United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of North Carolina has implemented the Take Back North Carolina Initiative. This initiative emphasizes the regional assignment of federal prosecutors to work with law enforcement and District Attorney’s Offices on a sustained basis in those communities to reduce the violent crime rate, drug trafficking, and crimes against law enforcement.
The Lumberton Police Department and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, the conducted the criminal investigation of this case. Assistant United States Attorney James J. Kurosad handled the prosecution of this case for the government.