Unsealed Indictment Charges Connecticut Man with Trafficking Guns and Fentanyl in Rhode Island and Connecticut
PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Brandon Dale Hayes, 31, of Central Falls, was sentenced today to 72 months in federal prison for being a felon in possession of a firearm. Hayes was arrested by Rhode Island State Police on July 12, 2015, after troopers discovered a loaded semi-automatic firearm Hayes had stashed under the front seat of a vehicle during a routine traffic stop.
At sentencing, U.S. District Court Judge John J. McConnell, Jr., also ordered Hayes to serve 3 years supervised release upon completion of his prison term. Hayes pleaded guilty on June 6, 2016, to being a felon in possession of a firearm, as charged in a federal indictment returned on October 14, 2015. No plea agreement was filed in this matter.
Hayes’ sentence is announced by United States Attorney Peter F. Neronha and Rhode Island State Police Superintendent Colonel Steven G. O’Donnell.
According to information presented to the court, on July 12, 2015, a State Police trooper stopped a vehicle in which Hayes was a rear-seat passenger. The vehicle, which carried five individuals, was stopped along Route 95 in Warwick after the trooper observed several motor vehicle violations. After approaching the vehicle, the State Police trooper detected an odor of marijuana. Upon questioning, Hayes admitted to the trooper that he was in possession of a small amount of marijuana.
After removing Hayes and the rest of the individuals from the vehicle, the trooper discovered a loaded 9mm semi-automatic handgun under the passenger front seat and several items in the trunk of the vehilce used in the distribution of marijuana. Hayes later admitted to State Police that the firearm and the items located in the trunk of the vehicle belonged to him. The investigation determined that Hayes had removed the loaded 9mm semi-automatic handgun from his waistband during the traffic stop and stowed it under the front passenger seat.
Hayes has been detained since his arrest. According to court records, Hayes was previously convicted on felony assault, drug and firearm charges.
The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Milind M. Shah.
Jim Martin (401) 709-5357
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