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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Middle District of Florida

Monday, October 1, 2018

Jacksonville Repeat Offender Sentenced To 16 Years In Federal Prison For Firearms Offense

Jacksonville, Florida– U.S. District Judge Marcia Morales Howard today sentenced Carl L. Lawson (46, Jacksonville) to 16 years in federal prison for possessing a firearm as a convicted felon and for violating the conditions of supervised release that Lawson was serving in connection with a prior federal drug conviction. Due to his prior multiple felony convictions, he qualified for an increased penalty under the Armed Career Criminal Act. Lawson pleaded guilty on July 5, 2018.

According to court documents, in early 2018, Lawson sold cocaine to a confidential informant on three occasions, and in one instance, offered to sell a firearm. On February 22, 2018, federal agents executed search warrants at the two locations in Jacksonville where Lawson had sold the cocaine. At the first location, agents found a loaded pistol and ammunition. At the second location, agents found Lawson (alone), another loaded pistol, a loaded assault-style rifle, and 60 baggies of cocaine. At the time, Lawson had previous felony convictions for sale of cocaine, armed robbery, and distribution of crack cocaine and is therefore prohibited from possessing a firearm or ammunition under federal law.

This case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, and Federal Bureau of Investigation. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Michael J. Coolican.

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program that has been successful in bringing together all levels of law enforcement to reduce violent crime and make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. In October 2017, Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced the reinvigoration of PSN and directed all U.S. Attorneys’ Offices to develop districtwide crime reduction strategies, incorporating the lessons learned since the program’s inception in 2001. In the Middle District of Florida, U.S. Attorney Maria Chapa Lopez coordinates PSN efforts in cooperation with various federal, state, and local law enforcement officials.

Firearms Offenses
Project Safe Neighborhoods
Updated October 1, 2018