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Press Release

Sanford Man Sentenced to 10 Years in Prison for Illegal Possession of a Firearm

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Middle District of North Carolina

GREENSBORO, N.C. - A Lee County resident was sentenced today in federal court in Greensboro for knowingly possessing a firearm after previously being convicted of a felony, announced Acting United States Attorney Sandra J. Hairston of the Middle District of North Carolina.

BRANDON FRANCISCO GAMEZ, age 21, of Sanford, North Carolina, was sentenced to a 120-month term of imprisonment by United States District Judge William L. Osteen, Jr. In addition to prison time, GAMEZ was ordered to serve three years of supervised release and to pay a special assessment of $100.00. GAMEZ pleaded guilty on December 17, 2020, to knowing possession of a Glock .45 caliber pistol after having previously been convicted of a felony offense punishable by imprisonment for more than one year.

Court records show that GAMEZ was arrested during a traffic stop along Washington Avenue in Sanford on October 9, 2019. GAMEZ attempted to flee on foot but was quickly apprehended by the Sanford Police Department. GAMEZ had the gun on his person, along with cocaine base (crack) and oxycodone hydrochloride pills.

According to court records, the Sanford Police Department test-fired the gun in GAMEZ’s possession. The Sanford Police Department compared the shell casings from the test-firing to data stored in the National Integrated Ballistic Information Network (“NIBIN”). NIBIN is a national data program used by federal, state, and local law enforcement to investigate ballistic information contained in spent shell casings. According to the NIBIN analysis in this case, the gun in GAMEZ’s possession on October 9, 2019, was involved in four shootings, including one that occurred on October 8, 2019, the day before the arrest. The four shootings occurred over a three-month period in 2019 in Sanford.

GAMEZ was convicted in 2017 in Lee County Superior Court for discharging a weapon into an occupied property. He was then convicted of being a felon in possession of a firearm in Lee County Superior Court in 2018.

This case resulted from SAFE Lee County, a partnership of criminal justice, service agency, and community stakeholders that have implemented a comprehensive strategy to reduce violence

across Lee County. It is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a data-driven effort led by the U.S. Department of Justice that concentrates prevention, intervention, reentry, investigation, and prosecution efforts on those most prone to violence. SAFE Lee County involves the Lee County District Attorney’s Office, Broadway Police Department, Lee County Sheriff’s Office, Sanford Police Department, NC Department of Public Safety Adult Community Corrections (probation) and Juvenile Justice, researchers from UNC-Greensboro, the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of NC, and the community.

The case was investigated by the Sanford Police Department, North Carolina Department of Public Safety Special Operations and Intelligence Unit, and United States Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives. The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Tanner L. Kroeger.


Updated March 16, 2021