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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, June 19, 2018

Lee County Project Safe Neighborhood Program Yields Guilty Plea, Sentencing, Of Repeat Offenders For Federal Firearms Violations

Greensboro, N.C. – One Lee County man pleaded guilty to possession of a firearm by a convicted felon and possession of a firearm with an altered or obliterated serial number, and another Lee County man was sentenced for possession of ammunition by a convicted felon, announced United States Attorney Matthew G.T. Martin. These cases resulted from close federal and local coordination through the Lee County Project Safe Neighborhoods (“PSN”) program, which is intended to reduce violent and gun-related crime.

On June 11, 2018, Teon Shamal La’Shane Douglas, age 22, of Sanford, N.C., pleaded guilty before the Honorable Thomas D. Schroeder, Chief United States District Judge, to a violation of 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(1), which makes it a federal crime for a previously convicted felon to possess a firearm or ammunition, and to a violation of 18 U.S.C. § 922(k), which makes it a federal crime to possess a firearm with a removed, altered, and/or obliterated manufacturer’s serial number.

As set forth in the factual basis filed in support of Douglas’s plea of guilty, on June 11, 2017, officers with the Sanford Police Department were on routine patrol when they pulled Douglas over for speeding. After smelling the odor of marihuana in the car, officers searched it and discovered a Walther handgun and a Sig Sauer handgun. Douglas had multiple previous convictions, including a 2016 conviction for Felony Possession with Intent to Manufacture/Sell/Deliver a Scheduled II Controlled Substance. On November 28, 2017, officers with the Lee County Sheriff’s Office pulled a car over with no registration plates. Douglas was a passenger in the car. After smelling the odor of marihuana in the car, officers searched the car and its occupants. They found a Ravens Arms pistol in the car and a second Ravens Arm pistol with an altered serial number in Douglas’s pants.

Douglas faces a maximum term of imprisonment of ten years for the first violation and a maximum term of imprisonment of five years for the second violation. The Court may also impose a term of supervised release of up to three years, a maximum fine of $250,000, and a special assessment fee of $100.00, for each violation. Douglas will be sentenced on September 18, 2018 at 2 p.m. in Winston-Salem Courtroom Two.

On June 15, 2018, Diante Tyrell Roberson, age 20, of Sanford, N.C., was sentenced by the Honorable N. Carlton Tilley, Jr., Senior United States District Judge, to imprisonment for thirty months, followed by three years supervised release and a $100.00 special assessment fee. On March 8, 2016, Roberson pleaded guilty to a violation of 18 U.S.C. § 922(g)(1), which makes it a federal crime for a previously convicted felon to possess a firearm or ammunition.

On July 6, 2017, officers with the Lee County Sheriff’s Office responded to a 911 call from a home in Sanford, N.C., reporting the shooting of a dog. Through the investigation, officers determined that Roberson had come to the home after midnight that evening and sent text messages to one of its occupants that threatened violence if she did not let him into the home. When the occupant would not come to the door, Roberson shot and killed a pet dog in the yard in retaliation. A 9mm shell casing was located near the corpse of the dog. Roberson had a 2017 conviction for Felony Accessory After the Fact related to a robbery.

These two matters are the result of close cooperation among members of the Lee County PSN coalition. PSN is a data-driven, nationwide Department of Justice coordinated gun and violent crime strategy designed to protect communities. The Lee County PSN coalition is comprised of the Sanford Police Department, the Lee County Sheriff’s Office, the Broadway Police Department, the Department of Public Safety Division of Adult Correction and Juvenile Justice (probation), the State Bureau of Investigation, the District Attorney’s Office for the 11A Prosecutorial District, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the United States Attorney’s Office, and many other community members and agencies.

These cases were investigated by the Sanford Police Department, the Lee County Sheriff’s Office, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. The cases were prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney JoAnna G. McFadden.

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Updated June 19, 2018