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Press Release

Columbia Man Sentenced to 77 Months in Prison on Federal Firearm Charge

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

COLUMBIA, SOUTH CAROLINA —Ernest Durane Mack, a/k/a “Marcus Mack,” 35, of Cayce, was sentenced to 77 months in federal prison after pleading guilty to being a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition.

Evidence obtained in the investigation revealed that on July 26, 2019, a trooper with the South Carolina Highway Patrol initiated a lawful traffic stop on St. Andrews Road in Columbia on a car Mack was driving after recognizing it to be a car that had fled after he attempted to stop it a week earlier. After a short chase, Mack pulled into a nearby apartment complex, where he stopped the car and fled on foot. Officers located Mack in a nearby apartment complex breezeway and saw him with a handgun, which he then threw towards an officer. Mack told officers that he fled from troopers because he had the handgun in the car. The investigation revealed that the handgun had previously been reported stolen in Spartanburg County.

Mack, who was on state probation at the time of the offense, has prior state convictions for trafficking cocaine (2 separate convictions), forgery, possession of a controlled substance, failure to stop for blue light and siren, and criminal domestic violence 1st degree (2 separate convictions). Mack is currently serving a 7-year sentence for criminal domestic violence 1st degree.

United States District Judge Mary Geiger Lewis sentenced Mack to 77 months in prison, to be followed by a 3-year term of court-ordered supervision. There is no parole in the federal system.

This investigation by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) and the South Carolina Highway Patrol is part of the joint federal, state, and local Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN) Program, the centerpiece of the Department of Justice’s violent crime reduction efforts.  PSN is an evidence-based program proven to be effective at reducing violent crime. Through PSN, a broad spectrum of stakeholders work together to identify the most pressing violent crime problems in the community and develop comprehensive solutions to address them.  As part of this strategy, PSN focuses enforcement efforts on the most violent offenders and partners with locally based prevention and reentry programs for lasting reductions in crime.

Assistant United States Attorney Stacey D. Haynes prosecuted the case.



Brook Andrews, First Assistant United States Attorney, U.S. Attorney’s Office,, (803) 929-3000

Updated March 15, 2023

Project Safe Neighborhoods
Firearms Offenses