Meridian man to spend 10 years behind bars on federal gun charges

Meridian man to spend 10 years behind bars on federal gun charges

JACKSON, Miss. (WLBT) - A Meridian man will spend the next 10 years in jail, after being sentenced for two counts of being a felon in possession of a firearm.

On Friday, U.S. Attorney Mike Hurst announced that Marquis Howard McNeely, 38, was sentenced to two 120-month sentences, with the second sentenced to be served concurrently with the first.

He also must pay a $1,500 fine.

Chief U.S. District Judge Daniel P. Jordan III handed down the decision.

Charges stemmed from a July 24, 2019 incident, when McNeely was arrested in Lauderdale County.

At approximately 4 a.m. that morning, a Lauderdale County sheriff’s deputy encountered McNeely in a vehicle that was parked in the wrong lane of traffic.

McNeely was said to be intoxicated at the time and was placed under arrest. A stolen handgun was recovered from the vehicle. McNeely was charged and released on bond, according to a U.S. Attorney’s Office news release.

On October 8, 2019, McNeely was arrested again at a traffic safety checkpoint, also in Lauderdale County.

The checkpoint was being conducted at the corner of State Boulevard and Chandler Road. “A deputy approached McNeely’s car and immediately saw that (he) had an assault rifle-style pistol held between his right knee and the center console,” the release states. “McNeely was again arrested and charged.”

The suspect was indicated by a federal grand jury the following month. McNeely previously had been convicted of felony DUI, aggravated assault and manslaughter. He pled guilty before Judge Jordan on September 1, 2020.

McNeely was tried under the U.S. Attorney’s Project EJECT program, which is designed to get repeat offenders off the street by trying and convicting them through the federal court system.

Copyright 2020 WLBT. All rights reserved.