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Press Release

Columbia Man Sentenced to Federal Prison for Firearm Charge

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

Columbia, South Carolina --- United States Attorney Sherri A. Lydon announced today that Wilbert Green, Jr., age 30, of Columbia, was sentenced to over 4 years in federal prison after pleading guilty to being a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition.

Evidence presented to the court showed that at approximately 8:45 p.m. on April 13, 2018, officers of the Columbia Police Department and the Midlands Gang Unit were patrolling the Lorick Circle area of Columbia with special agents of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) after receiving several firearm-related reports the previous month. As they drove through an apartment complex on Lorick Circle, officers/agents observed what appeared to be a black pistol magazine protruding from Green’s right rear pants pocket. Officers/agents exited their vehicles and made contact with Green, who was also holding an open container of beer, in violation of the open container law. Green failed to comply with directives of officers/agents to quit reaching behind to his back pocket and to turn around put his hands on a nearby car. Green advised officers/agents, “I know the law….I just got out of prison.” Officers secured Green and located a loaded Hi-Point 9mm with an extended high-capacity magazine in Green’s rear right pants pocket. After the arrest, officers/agents learned that there were outstanding warrants for Green from Clarendon County for attempted murder and possession of a weapon during a violent crime.

A ballistics analysis through National Integrated Ballistic Information Network (NIBIN) revealed that the Hi-Point 9mm handgun was linked to shell casings recovered at an unsolved July 2017 shooting off Garners Ferry Road. NIBIN is the only national network that allows for the capture and comparison of ballistic evidence to aid in solving and preventing violent crimes involving firearms. NIBIN is a proven investigative and intelligence tool that can link firearms from multiple crime scenes, allowing law enforcement to quickly disrupt shooting cycles.

Federal law prohibits Green from possessing firearms and ammunition based upon his prior state convictions from North and South Carolina. Green’s prior state court convictions include:  assault with a deadly weapon (knife) to inflict serious injury (NC 2009); criminal domestic violence wherein he threatened a female with a firearm and slapped her (SC 2013); and assault and battery 1st degree wherein he shot a man during a robbery (SC 2015).   

Senior United States District Judge Cameron McGowan Currie sentenced Green to 51 months in federal prison, to be followed by a 3-year term of court-ordered supervision.  There is no parole in the federal system.

The case was investigated by the ATF and the Columbia Police Department. It was prosecuted as part of the joint federal, state, and local Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), 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 of the Columbia office prosecuted the case.

For more information on NIBIN, visit



Lance Crick (864) 282-2105

Updated June 28, 2019

Firearms Offenses
Project Safe Neighborhoods