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Press Release

Raleigh Man’s Roadside Bathroom Break Leads to Four-Year Federal Firearms Sentence

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

RALEIGH — The United States Attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina, Robert J. Higdon, Jr., announced that today, Chief United States District Judge Terrence W. Boyle sentenced Clifton Eugene Battle, 35, of Raleigh to 48 months’ imprisonment, followed by 3 years of supervised release.  Battle pled guilty to one count of possession of a firearm by a convicted felon on February 20, 2019. 

The evidence established that on June 26, 2018, a deputy with the Wake County Sheriff’s Office was on patrol when he saw a car stationary in a travel lane of Poole Road in Raleigh.  The deputy stopped to find BATTLE standing by the car with the driver’s door open.  BATTLE, who had glassy eyes, smelled of alcohol, and was standing over a puddle, explained that he had stopped his car to urinate.  The deputy walked around the car, and spotted a Taurus .38 special revolver sitting in plain view on the passenger seat.  Deputies searched the car and also recovered a box of ammunition from the trunk. 

In 2008, BATTLE was convicted of being a felon in possession of a firearm in a crime he used a revolver to shoot a man.  He was on supervised release for that offense when this crime occurred.

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.   Since 2017 the United States Department of Justice has reinvigorated the PSN program and has targeted 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.

That effort has been implemented through the Take Back North Carolina Initiative of The United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of North Carolina.  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 investigation of this case was conducted by the Wake County Sheriff’s Office and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives (ATF).  Assistant United States Attorneys Jake D. Pugh represented the government.  

Updated May 22, 2019

Project Safe Neighborhoods