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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of Georgia

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Friday, July 10, 2020

Firearms-related indictments continue Project Guardian's collaborative law enforcement initiative

Ten defendants indicted on charges including felon in possession of firearms

SAVANNAH, GA:  Ten defendants were indicted this week on felony charges, including federal firearms violations, under the umbrella of the Department of Justice’s Project Guardian.

In addition to firearms charges, many of the 10 indictments charge a range of federal crimes including drug trafficking, said Bobby L. Christine, U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Georgia. Most of the indictments target previously convicted felons, several of whom were on state parole or probation at the time of their indictment.

“As a key Department of Justice initiative, Project Guardian leverages the cooperative relationship between our office, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, and state and local law enforcement agencies and prosecutors to protect our communities by identifying and removing gun criminals,” said U.S. Attorney Christine. “Together we will continue working to keep our communities safer by targeting repeat offenders who illegally possess and use firearms.”

Those named in the federal indictments include:

  • John Wesley Boone, a/k/a “Boone,” a/k/a “J,” 33, of Brunswick, Ga., charged with Possession with Intent to Distribute Ecstasy and Crack Cocaine; Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon; and Possession of a Firearm in Furtherance of a Drug Trafficking Offense.
  • Joseph Jay Gartrell III, 36, of Augusta, charged with Possession with Intent to Distribute Methamphetamine; Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon; and Possession of a Firearm in Furtherance of a Drug Trafficking Crime. 
  • Tron Smith, 33, of Savannah, charged with Possession with Intent to Distribute Cocaine and Marijuana; Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon; and Possession of a Firearm in Furtherance of a Drug Trafficking Offense.
  • Dominique Johnson, 32, of Augusta, charged with Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon; and Possession of Cocaine and Marijuana.
  • Courtney Spann, 28, of Statesboro, Ga., charged with Possession of Ammunition and Firearms by a Convicted Felon.
  • Chance Derrell Christian, 41, of Kingstree, S.C., charged with Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon.
  • Samuel Powell III, 37, of Augusta, charged with Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon.
  • Arkeem Collins, 24, of Savannah, charged with Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon.
  • Clifford Stone, 28, of Wrens, Ga., charged with Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon.
  • Delvon Brown, 34, of Savannah, charged with Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon.

Criminal indictments contain only charges; defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

“ATF will continue to focus its resources on this results-driven initiative to curb firearms-related violent crime in the Southern District of Georgia,” said Beau Kolodka, Assistant Special Agent in Charge of the Atlanta Field Division of the ATF.

The cases are investigated under Project Guardian, the Department of Justice’s signature initiative to reduce gun violence and enforce federal firearms laws, and the Prosecutor to Prosecutor Program (P3), which provides collaboration between federal and state prosecutors to determine the most appropriate venue for prosecuting crimes.

In addition to the ATF, agencies involved in investigation of the cases include the Drug Enforcement Administration, the FBI, the Georgia Department of Community Supervision, the Georgia State Patrol, the Chatham-Savannah Counter Narcotics Team, the Richmond County Sheriff’s Office, the Jefferson County Sheriff’s Office, the Liberty County Sheriff’s Office, the Brunswick Police Department, the Savannah Police Department, the Hinesville Police Department, the Glynn County Police Department, and the Statesboro Police Department.

The cases are being investigated for the United States by Southern District U.S. Attorney’s Office Assistant U.S. Attorneys including Project Guardian Coordinator Henry W. Syms; Joshua Bearden; Jennifer Stanley; Jennifer Kirkland; John P. Harper III; and Special Assistant U.S. Attorneys Edwin Caban and Noah Abrams.

Topic(s): 
Project Guardian
Project Safe Neighborhoods
Drug Trafficking
Firearms Offenses
Violent Crime
Contact: 
Barry L. Paschal, Public Affairs Officer: 912-652-4422
Press Release Number: 
86-20
Updated July 10, 2020