LITTLE ROCK—Two West Memphis men recently convicted of gun and drug crimes have each sentenced to more than a decade in federal prison. Cody Hiland, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Arkansas, and William McCrary, Assistant Special Agent in Charge of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives (ATF), New Orleans Field Division, announced today that Jeremy Briscoe, 36, and Carlton Daniels, Jr., 42, both of West Memphis, have been sentenced to 151 and 180 months, respectively, after searches revealed guns and drugs in their homes.
A federal Grand Jury charged Briscoe with being a felon in possession of a firearm, using a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime, and drug trafficking charges. On August 20, 2018, Briscoe pleaded guilty to possession with intent to distribute cocaine, with an enhanced penalty for also illegally possessing a firearm. On Wednesday, United States District Court Judge Susan Webber Wright sentenced Briscoe to 151 months (12.5 years) in federal prison, to be followed by three years of supervised release. There is no parole in the federal system.
Similarly, Daniels was charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm, as well as other drug and gun charges. On June 21, 2018, Daniels pleaded guilty to being a felon in possession of a firearm, and because of his multiple prior felony convictions, faced a mandatory 15 years in prison. United States District Court Chief Judge Brian S. Miller sentenced Daniels to 180 months, to be followed by three years of supervised release, on October 15, 2018.
“Drug crimes and convicted criminals who illegally possess guns are a plague on all communities, but especially in tight knit communities like West Memphis,” Hiland said. “These significant sentences should continue to send the message that we will seek to punish to the fullest extent of the law convicted criminals who illegally possess guns and drugs. And, in communities like West Memphis, we will continue to work with our local law enforcement partners in our efforts to hold these criminals accountable.”
As stated during Briscoe’s change of plea hearing, on May 2, 2016, the West Memphis Police Department executed a search warrant at Briscoe’s residence after previously buying crack cocaine at the house. Inside the home officers found a loaded shotgun, two sets of digital scales with powdery residue on them, and crack cocaine.
Daniels’s case also began as a West Memphis Police Department investigation. On September 21, 2016, officers conducted a search of Daniels’s residence after a report that Daniels had threatened someone with a firearm. During the search, officers found a Smith and Wesson .40-caliber handgun and a Ruger 9mm handgun, as well as cocaine.
“These convictions and sentences are an example of the ATF’s commitment to working with our law enforcement partners in identifying and apprehending the violent criminals that prey upon the vulnerable and who threaten the safety of our communities,” ASAC McCrary said. “The ATF and our partners will continue to aggressively investigate and prosecute those who victimize our neighbors, and undermine the safety and security of our neighborhoods.”
These cases are 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. 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 investigations were conducted by the West Memphis Police Department and the ATF. The cases were prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Stacy Williams and Michael Gordon.
Press release – US Attorneys Office