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Press Release

Jury Convicts Suffolk Man of Selling Gun to a Felon

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

NORFOLK, Va. – A federal jury convicted a Suffolk man today on charges of selling a firearm to a felon. 

According to court records and evidence presented at trial, Charlie Keys, 29, sold a loaded semi-automatic handgun to a man he knew was a felon. The man was working as a confidential informant for the Suffolk Police Department and recorded the gun sale on video. During the sale, Keys demonstrated that the gun worked by firing it into the air while standing in his front yard.

Keys faces a maximum penalty of five years in prison when sentenced on November 7. Actual sentences for federal crimes are typically less than the maximum penalties. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after taking into account the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.

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.

G. Zachary Terwilliger, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia, Martin Culbreth, Special Agent in Charge of the FBI’s Norfolk Field Office, and Thomas E. Bennett, Chief of Suffolk Police, made the announcement after U.S. District Judge Mark S. Davis accepted the verdict. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Andrew C. Bosse and William B. Jackson are prosecuting the case.

A copy of this press release is located on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia. Related court documents and information is located on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia or on PACER by searching for Case No. 2:18-cr-73.


Joshua Stueve
Director of Communications

Updated July 23, 2018

Firearms Offenses