A Prattville man has been sentenced after he illegally possessed a firearm and shot a cow on Thursday.
The United States Attorney Louis V. Franklin, Sr. announced that 30-year-old Byron Jamar Esco received a sentence of about five years after he “senselessly using a firearm to shoot and kill a pregnant cow.”
The news release from the Middle District of Alabama Department of Justice says “On November 29, 2017, Esco, who had been recently released from state prison, was driving his vehicle along country roads near Hope Hull, Alabama. As he drove, Esco, unprovoked, pointed his 9-millimeter handgun at a cow grazing in a field. Esco then fired the weapon and killed the cow, which was pregnant with a calf. Esco drove away. Before he could do so, though, the cow’s owner observed Esco’s vehicle and reported the shooting and the details of the getaway vehicle to law enforcement authorities. Early the following morning, a sheriff’s deputy found Esco driving the car. Inside the vehicle was the handgun used in the shooting.”
Authorities say Esco could not lawfully possess the firearm, because Esco was previously convicted of felony offenses. Therefore, a grand jury charged Esco with being a felon in possession of a firearm and Esco later pleaded guilty to the crime.
At the sentencing hearing, Esco received an enhancement for possessing the firearm in furtherance of another felony offense—that felony offense being killing cattle livestock, in violation of Alabama law.