Hattiesburg, Miss. – Jakobe McCray Woullard, 19, of Hattiesburg, pled guilty today before Senior U.S. District Judge Keith Starrett to being an unlawful user of a controlled substance in possession of a firearm, announced U.S. Attorney Mike Hurst and Special Agent in Charge Kurt Thielhorn with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
Woullard was an admitted unlawful user of a marijuana and had been smoking it since he was about 12 years old. On December 2, 2018, Woullard was the passenger in a vehicle that smelled of marijuana when he was found to be in possession of a firearm. Woullard admitted possessing the firearm and, during a subsequent interview, he admitted his longstanding marijuana habit. Woullard’s hair also tested positive for a marijuana metabolite shortly after his arrest. He was charged in a federal criminal indictment on August 6, 2019.
Woullard will be sentenced by Judge Starrett on February 5, 2020 at 9:30 a.m. He faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
This case is part of Project EJECT, an initiative by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Mississippi under the U.S. Department of Justice’s Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN). EJECT is a holistic, multi-disciplinary approach to fighting and reducing violent crime through prosecution, prevention, re-entry and awareness. EJECT stands for “Empower Justice Expel Crime Together.” PSN is bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. Former Attorney General Jeff Sessions reinvigorated PSN in 2017 as part of the Department’s renewed focus on targeting violent criminals, directing all U.S. Attorney’s Offices to work in partnership with federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement and the local community to develop effective, locally-based strategies to reduce violent crime.
The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and Hattiesburg Police Department investigated the case. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Andrew W. Eichner.