Two Raleigh County felons plead guilty to federal gun crimes
For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of West Virginia
BECKLEY, W.Va. – Two Raleigh County felons pleaded guilty today to federal gun charges, announced United States Attorney Carol Casto. Jerry Wayne Phillips, Jr., 40, of Beckley, entered his guilty plea to being a felon in possession of a firearm. In a separate prosecution, Don Edward Christy, Jr., 42, of Prince, also pleaded guilty to being a felon in possession of a firearm.
Phillips admitted that on June 23, 2016, he possessed six stolen firearms, including a Marlin, Model 30AW, .30/.30 caliber rifle; a Norinco, Model Type 56 SKS, 7.62x39mm rifle; a Mossberg, Model 500, 12 gauge shotgun; a Keystone Sporting Arms, Model Cricket, .22 caliber rifle; a Winchester, Model 190, .22 caliber rifle; and a Rossi (Taurus), Model S411220BS, .410/.22 caliber rifle. Phillips was prohibited from possessing any firearms under federal law because of a 1998 felony drug conviction in Raleigh County Circuit Court and a 2004 misdemeanor conviction for domestic violence.
In a separate prosecution, Christy admitted that on July 27, 2017, he sold an SCCY, Model CPX-2, 9mm pistol to a confidential informant working with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF). The gun deal took place in the parking lot of Walmart on North Eisenhower Drive in Beckley. Christy further admitted that on August 14, 2017, he sold a Taurus, Model PT 111, Millennium G2, 9mm pistol and approximately 7.8 grams of methamphetamine to a confidential informant working with the ATF. The gun and drug deal took place in the parking lot of AutoZone on Robert C. Byrd Drive in Beckley. Christy was prohibited from possessing any firearms under federal law because of two felony convictions in Raleigh County Circuit Court, one in 2006 for attempt to commit aggravated robbery and another in 2014 for breaking and entering.
Phillips and Christy each face up to 10 years in federal prison when they are sentenced on January 31, 2018.
The investigations were conducted by the ATF and the Beckley Police Department. The plea hearings were held before United States District Judge Irene C. Berger.
These cases were brought as part of Project Safe Neighborhoods. Project Safe Neighborhoods is a nationwide commitment to reduce gun crime in the United States by networking with existing local programs targeting gun crime.
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Updated October 12, 2017
Project Safe Neighborhoods