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Press Release

Prince George’s County Felon Pleads Guilty to Federal Gun Charge

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, District of Maryland
Defendant Now Faces Federal Time

Greenbelt, Maryland – Quinton Darnell McLean, age 21, of Washington, D.C., pleaded guilty in U.S District Court in Greenbelt, to being a felon in possession of a firearm.  The guilty plea was entered on Friday, July 15, 2016. 

The guilty plea was announced by United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Rod J. Rosenstein; Special Agent in Charge Daniel L. Board, Jr. of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives - Baltimore Field Division; Chief Hank Stawinski of the Prince George’s County Police Department; and Prince George’s County State’s Attorney Angela D. Alsobrooks.

“Criminals who are not deterred from carrying guns by the threat of prison time can be deterred by the reality of years spent in a federal prison far from home,” said U.S. Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein. “Police and prosecutors are working to identify armed criminals who deserve to be charged in federal court.”

According to his plea agreement, on February 12, 2016, McLean was traveling with two other men in a green Saturn on the Suitland Parkway.  Officers with the Prince George’s Police Department Washington Area Vehicle Enforcement Team (WAVE) conducted a query of the temporary registration on the Saturn, which revealed that the tag was issued for a 1987 Mercedes Benz.  Officers followed the vehicle, which pulled into a carwash on Branch Avenue in Temple Hills, Maryland.

The driver of the Saturn pulled the vehicle into the carwash bay and began washing the car while McLean and the other occupant stood outside the entrance to the carwash bay.  One of the officers, whose unmarked car was next in line for the wash bay behind the green Saturn, saw McLean adjusting his waistband and clutching the right side of his waistband as he stood outside the carwash bay.  The officer knew that McLean’s behavior was indicative of an armed person, and believed that McLean had a firearm in his waistband.  The officer frisked McLean for weapons and recovered a loaded .45 caliber semi-automatic pistol that was tucked in the right front side of McLean’s waistband area.  McLean was arrested.  McLean has a previous felony conviction and is prohibited from possessing a firearm or ammunition.  

While in state custody, before federal charges were filed, McLean made several calls from jail.  During these conversations, which are recorded by the detention center, McLean made several statements, including, that he had made “a stupid a** mistake,” and that “I should have left the ‘dog’ in the glove box.”  According to court documents, McLean also stated, “Maryland time is cheap as s**t.”  

McLean and the government have agreed that if the Court accepts the plea agreement McLean will be sentenced to two years in prison.  There is no parole in the federal criminal justice system.    U.S. District Judge Paul W. Grimm has scheduled sentencing for September 26, 2016 at 9:30 a.m.

As part of the coordinated state effort to reduce violent crime, the Prince George’s County Police Department, ATF, FBI, DEA, HSI, U.S. Marshals Service, the Prince George’s County State’s Attorney’s Office, and the United States Attorney’s Office, review cases of defendants arrested for firearms violations, drug offenses and other violent crimes, and evaluate whether the case should be considered for federal prosecution. Prosecutors evaluate each defendant’s criminal record, the circumstances of the arrest and other relevant information. 

United States Attorney Rod J. Rosenstein commended the ATF, Prince George’s County Police Department and Prince George’s County State’s Attorney’s Office for their work in the investigation.  Mr. Rosenstein thanked Special Assistant United States Attorney Matthew L. Paeffgen, who is prosecuting the case.

Updated July 18, 2016

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