DOJ seal

Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
Eastern District of Tennessee

For Immediate Release

Thursday, March 8, 2018
J. Douglas Overbey
, United States Attorney
Contact: Sharry Dedman-Beard

Armed Career Criminal Sentenced to 180 Months

CHATTANOOGA, Tenn. – On March 7, 2018, Chris Rayvon Starks, 31, of Shelbyville, Tennessee, was sentenced to serve 180 months in prison by the Honorable Curtis L. Collier, Senior U.S. District Judge.  Upon his release from prison, Starks will be under the supervision of the U.S. Probation Office for five years.  

Starks previously pleaded guilty to unlawfully possessing a firearm and ammunition in violation of the Gun Control Act.  His sentence was enhanced based on his three prior convictions for aggravated robbery.  He was sentenced under the Armed Career Criminal Act (“ACCA”). 

In August 2016, law enforcement executed a search warrant at the residence of Starks in Shelbyville, Tennessee, during which they seized a loaded .32 caliber semi-automatic pistol.  He was present during the execution of the search warrant and admitted the firearm was his.  Further investigation determined that the firearm was actually stolen.  Starks currently has pending aggravated robbery charges in Bedford County, Tennessee.

“The U.S. Attorney’s Office will continue to protect the safety of our citizens and neighborhoods by prosecuting convicted felons who illegally possess or attempt to gain access to firearms,” said U.S. Attorney J. Douglas Overbey.  “The investigators in this case quickly and thoroughly investigated the information provided to them regarding this defendant, consequently disrupting any plan of violence that he may have intended to pursue,” added U.S. Attorney Overbey.

The indictment and subsequent prosecution of Starks was the result of an investigation conducted by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Michael D. Porter represented the United States in court proceedings.

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a comprehensive national strategy that creates local partnerships with law enforcement agencies to effectively enforce existing gun laws.  It provides more options to prosecutors, allowing them to utilize local, state, and federal laws to ensure that criminals who commit gun crime face tough sentences.  PSN gives each federal district the flexibility it needs to focus on individual challenges that a specific community faces.


Field Division: Nashville Field Division