Wilson Man Sentenced to 45 Months in Prison Following High Speed Chase Resulting in Discovery of Drugs and Firearm

The United States Attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina, Robert J. Higdon, Jr., announced that yesterday in federal court Chief United States District Judge James C. Dever, III sentenced KEEDRON JAMELL KEARNEY, 20, of Wilson, NC to serve 45 months in prison and 3 years of supervised release upon conviction for Possession with Intent to Distribute a Quantity of Crack Cocaine and Possession of a Firearm by a Convicted Felon.  KEARNEY previously pleaded guilty to the charges on April 19, 2018.

According to the Indictment and arguments at sentencing, on July 27, 2017 in Wilson, officers with the Wilson County Sheriff’s Office learned that KEARNEY was distributing cocaine base (crack).  A confidential informant purchased a quantity of crack from Kearney at a motel parking lot in Wilson.  After the purchase, officers attempted to conduct a traffic stop on KEARNEY’S vehicle.  When officers activated blue lights and sirens, however, KEARNEY led officers on a dangerous car chase with speeds exceeding 100 miles an hour on the streets of Wilson.  Once apprehended, officers found additional drugs, scales, and a loaded firearm in the vehicle.

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and make our neighborhoods safer for everyone.   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.

In support of PSN, the United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of North Carolina has implemented the Take Back North Carolina Initiative.  This initiative emphasizes the regional assignment of federal prosecutors to work with law enforcement and District Attorney’s Offices on a sustained basis in those communities to reduce the violent crime rate, drug trafficking, and crimes against law enforcement.

The investigation of this case was conducted by the Wilson County Sheriff’s Office with the assistance of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives.  Assistant United States Attorney William M. Gilmore represented the government in this case.

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