Shooters of Columbus Scammers sentenced in online gun purchase scheme

Crime

COLUMBUS, Ga. (WRBL) – Three Columbus defendants involved in an online illegal gun purchasing scheme at Shooters of Columbus have been sentenced.

The three defendants, all from Columbus, engaged in a scheme to obtain guns illegally at Shooters of Columbus using stolen credit cards and personal information, the U.S. Attorney’s Office said.

Defendants Keith Jones, 43, Bruce Kennebrew, 31, and Demarcus Dixon, 24, will not have the possibility of parole for their sentences.

The sentences for all three defendants were handed down on Nov. 5 by U.S. District Judge Clay Land.

The charges and sentences for each defendant were:

  • Keith Jones – 75 months in prison, consecutive to any pending state revocation, three years supervised release, $2890 in restitution. Jones plead guilty to one count of conspiracy to make false statements and one count of aggravated identity fraud.
  • Bruce Kennebrew – 63 months in prison, consecutive to any state sentence, three years of supervised release, and $2890 in restitution. Kennebrew plead guilty to possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.
  • Demarcus Dixon – 10 months in prison, three years of supervised release, and $2890 in restitution, joint and severally with the other defendants. Dixon plead guilty to conspiracy to make false statemetns.

According to official records, all three defendants admitted to using stolen credit cards and information to buy guns illegally at Shooters of Columbus. Jones stole the information and made purchases online, while Kennebrew was the driver for transporting and accepting delivery of the guns.

Dixon made the illegal purchases because he did not have a criminal record, according to the Department of Justice. The lack of criminal record made Dixon the only one who could obtain firearms in his name.

From April 1-3, 2017, two pistols and a rifle were purchased by Jones online, said the DOJ. A victim of identity fraud contacted Shooters of Columbus on April 3, 2017 to question to unauthorized charges made on their credit card while Dixon was inside picking up another illegally purchased gun, officials say.

Dixon was detained at the scene, and Kennebrew was driving Dixon’s car at the time of arrest, the DOJ said. The case was prosecuted as part of the Project Safe Neighborhoods program, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives and the Columbus Police Department investigated the case.

“It is illegal for convicted felons to have firearms. Removing guns from the hands of convicted felons is a priority of our office, and part of a common sense strategy to decrease violent crime in Columbus and across the Middle District of Georgia,” said U.S. Attorney Charlie Peeler.

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