Registered Sex Offender Pleads Guilty to Gun Charges in Federal Court
Columbia, South Carolina ---- United States Attorney Sherri A. Lydon stated today that Jason Rivers, age 30, of Lexington, SC, pled guilty on in federal court in Columbia, to Felon in Possession of a Firearm, a violation of Title 18, United States Code, Section 922(g). United States Senior District Judge Cameron Currie, of Columbia, accepted the plea and will impose sentence after she has reviewed the presentence report which will be prepared by the U.S. Probation Office.
The evidence presented at the guilty plea hearing established that on January 29, 2018, Lexington County Sheriff’s Office (LCSO) Deputies tracked Rivers to his residence in order to execute an arrest warrant on Rivers for Failure to Update his Residence as a Registered Sex Offender. Upon entering the residence, Deputies encountered Rivers at the door and immediately detained him. When Deputies first saw Rivers he was wearing a backpack and before deputies could detain him, Rivers attempted to throw the backpack into the residence. Deputies seized the backpack and searched it finding a loaded Ruger .380 caliber pistol. After Deputies detained Rivers, he admitted to owning the Ruger pistol.
Rivers is prohibited under federal law from possessing a firearm due to prior felony convictions for assault and battery of a high and aggravated Nature and committing a lewd act upon a child under sixteen (16).
Rivers faces a maximum possible penalty of ten (10) years, a fine of $250,000, and up to three (3) years of supervised release.
The case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) and the Lexington 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 Will Lewis, of the Columbia, office handled the case. Project CeaseFire is part 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.