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Press Release

East St. Louis Man Sentenced to 10 Years in Prison for Unlawful Possession of Firearms

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of Illinois


Warren Stepney, Jr., 23, of East St. Louis, Illinois will serve ten years in federal prison for possession of firearms as a previously convicted felon, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of Illinois, Donald S. Boyce, announced today. Following his prison sentence, Stepney will be on federal supervised release for three years. Stepney has been in custody since his arrest on July 28, 2016.

Documents filed in the U.S. District Court establish that on June 28, 2016, Stepney, was observed by officers loitering outside of a convenience store in East St. Louis, Illinois, along with four other individuals. When the officers approached and questioned Stepney, he reached into his pockets. Officers told him to remove his hands. When he refused, an officer performed a pat down search and found a .380 caliber HiPoint handgun in Stepney’s pocket. The gun was loaded with nine rounds of ammunition, and it had an obliterated serial number.

One month later, on July 28, 2016, an East St. Louis officer initiated a traffic stop of Stepney, who was driving a Kia Sportage that had been reported stolen out of St. Louis, Missouri. The officer approached the car with his service weapon drawn and told Stepney to turn the vehicle off, to which Stepney stated he did not know how. When the officer attempted to reach across Stepney to turn the car off, Stepney tried to reach under the passenger’s seat and then put the vehicle into gear and began to drive away with the officer partially inside the car. Stepney drug the officer approximately 15 feet causing injury to the officer. As Stepney fled, he attempted to drive onto a ramp to the interstate at which time he lost control and crashed. As other officers arrived to assist, Stepney threw a handgun out the driver’s side window before he was taken into custody. The firearm was recovered by the officers and determined to be a fully loaded Citadel Government Model 1911-22.

Court documents further established that Stepney was a previously convicted felon, having been convicted in 2012 of residential burglary in the Circuit Court of St. Clair County, Illinois.

The case was investigated by the East St. Louis Police Department and the Washington Park Police Department. The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Ali Summers.

Updated October 13, 2017

Firearms Offenses