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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, March 10, 2022

Former State Highway Patrol Officer Pleads Guilty to Selling Firearms Without a License

GREENSBORO, N.C. - A Browns Summit man pleaded guilty today to unlawfully transporting and dealing in firearms.

Timothy Jay Norman, age 47, pleaded guilty to dealing in firearms without a license, a violation of Title 18, United States Code, Sections 922(a)(1)(A), 923(a), and 924(a)(1)(D).

According to court-filed documents, beginning in January 2021, the Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI) learned that Norman was selling firearms to various persons, including a convicted felon, while employed as a North Carolina State Highway Patrol (NCSHP) trooper. During the investigation, the FBI learned that Norman held out for sale, using the convicted felon as a “middleman,” various firearms, which included decommissioned NCSHP service weapons: Sig Sauer P226 .357 semi-automatic pistols; Arma Lite, AR-15 5.56mm semi-automatic rifles, and Beretta, Model 1201FP, 12-gauge shotguns. Thereafter, law enforcement agencies conducted three successful controlled purchase operations.

Specifically, on or about May 12, 2021, law enforcement, using a confidential human source, purchased a decommissioned Sig Sauer P226 .357 semi-automatic pistol, with the NCSHP badge engraved on top of the slide, in a case with two magazines, for $1,600 from Norman. On or about June 8, 2021, agencies, using a source, purchased a Beretta 12-gauge shotgun and an Arma Lite AR-15 semi-automatic rifle, one magazine, one soft black case, and one 50-round drum magazine from Norman at his home in Browns Summit, for $3,200. Finally, on or about June 24, 2021, law enforcement conducted a third successful controlled firearms evidence purchase from Norman, wherein Norman sold a NCSHP Sig Sauer P226 .357 semi-automatic pistol from his patrol car to a source at a closed gas station. Norman received $2,000 in FBI case funds in exchange for the decommissioned weapon. As to all of these firearms, records from the Federal Firearms Licensee (“the FFL”) where Norman purchased them establish that Norman made a significant profit as a result of the various transactions. The records also showed that Norman had purchased thirty-six firearms from the FFL since January 1, 2021.

On July 7, 2021, investigating agencies executed a search warrant on Norman’s home and seized thousands of rounds of ammunition and over fifty firearms. In Norman’s patrol car, they found two more firearms (neither of which was NCSHP-issued), including one AR-15 rifle that Norman purchased from the FFL earlier that year. There was also an envelope with over $2,000 in cash, which included FBI buy money from one of the controlled buy operations referenced above.

Sentencing is scheduled to take place on June 2, 2022, at 9:30 am in Greensboro Courtroom Number Three before the Honorable Catherine C. Eagles. At sentencing, Norman faces a maximum sentence of five years in prison, a period of supervised release of up to three years, and monetary penalties.

Sandra J. Hairston, U.S. Attorney for the Middle District of North Carolina, made the announcement. Agents with the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, North Carolina State Bureau of Investigation, and North Carolina State Highway Patrol-Internal Affairs Division investigated the case. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys JoAnna G. McFadden and John M. Alsup.

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Updated March 10, 2022