Jackson Man Arrested Locally for Murder and Released on Bond Pleads Guilty under Project EJECT to Illegally Possessing a Gun
Jackson, Miss. – Cedric Taylor, 45, of Jackson, who was arrested by Jackson Police officers in March for murder and released on bond by a local judge, pled guilty yesterday before Senior U.S. District Judge David C. Bramlette III to being a felon in possession of a firearm, announced U.S. Attorney Mike Hurst and Special Agent in Charge Michelle Sutphin with the Federal Bureau of Investigation in Mississippi.
On March 5, 2019, officers with the Jackson Police Department executed a search warrant on Taylor’s residence in Jackson while investigating the murder of Dewan Fortner. Investigators recovered a firearm at the residence, which Taylor later confessed to knowingly possessing. While Taylor was arrested for murder in March 2019, he was thereafter released on a $125,000 bond, even though, according to the victim’s family, Taylor admitted in court that he had hidden Fortner’s body behind a building in Byram. This bond was granted despite the fact that Taylor had previous convictions for aggravated assault in Hinds County, Mississippi, and felon in possession of a firearm in the U.S. District Court for the Southern District of Mississippi.
After being release on a local bond, Taylor was arrested on federal charges on March 29, 2019, for being a felon in possession of a firearm, and has been detained by U.S. Marshals without bond ever since.
Taylor will be sentenced by Judge Bramlette on June 2, 2020. He faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine.
The case was investigated by the Federal Bureau of Investigation. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Lynn Murray.
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) and Project Guardian. 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. Project Guardian draws upon the Department’s past successful programs to reduce gun violence; enhances coordination of federal, state, local, and tribal authorities in investigating and prosecuting gun crimes; improves information-sharing by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives when a prohibited individual attempts to purchase a firearm and is denied by the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS), to include taking appropriate actions when a prospective purchaser is denied by the NICS for mental health reasons; and ensures that federal resources are directed at the criminals posing the greatest threat to our communities.