Kershaw County Man Pleads Guilty to Federal Gun Charges
Columbia, South Carolina ---- United States Attorney Beth Drake stated that Michael Andrew Gary, age 27, of Camden, South Carolina, pled guilty in federal court to two counts of Felon in Possession of a Firearm, in violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 922(g). Senior United States District Judge Joseph F. Anderson, Jr., of Columbia, accepted the guilty plea and will impose sentence after he has reviewed the presentence report, which will be prepared by the United States Probation Office.
Evidence presented in court established that on January 17, 2017 officers of the Camden Police Department stopped Gary for a traffic offense, and arrested him for Driving Under Suspension. A search of the car that Gary was driving revealed a .32 caliber Colt pistol. Gary admitted the firearm was his. At the time of his arrest, Gary had previous felony convictions that prohibit him from possessing a firearm.
Approximately 6 months later, on June 16, 2017, officers of the Kershaw County Sheriff’s Department encountered Gary sitting in a car in a hotel parking lot. After officers smelled a strong odor of marijuana, they searched the car and found a Taurus 9 mm firearm in the trunk of the car. Again, Gary acknowledged that the firearm belonged to him.
Gary faces a maximum of 10 years , a fine of $250,000, and up to 3 years of supervised release on each count.
The case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF), the Camden Police Department and the Kershaw County Sheriff’s Office and was prosecuted as part of the joint federal, state and local Project CeaseFire initiative, which aggressively prosecutes firearm cases. Assistant United States Attorney Nancy C. Wicker of the Columbia office handled the case.
Project Ceasefire is South Carolina’s continued application of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program that has been historically successful in bringing together all levels of law enforcement to reduce violent crime and make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. Attorney General Jeff Sessions has made turning the tide of rising violent crime in America a top priority. In October 2017, as part of a series of actions to address this crime trend, Attorney General Sessions announced the reinvigoration of PSN and directed all U.S. Attorney’s Offices to develop a district crime reduction strategy that incorporates the lessons learned since PSN launched in 2001.