For Immediate Release
Forrest County Man Sentenced to Over 17 Years in Federal Prison under Project EJECT for Possession of Methamphetamine with Intent to Distribute
Hattiesburg, Miss. – Oliver McNair, 30, of Petal, was sentenced yesterday by U.S. District Judge Taylor B. McNeel to 210 months in federal prison, followed by 5 years of supervised release, for possessing methamphetamine with the intent to distribute, announced Acting U.S. Attorney Darren LaMarca and Special Agent in Charge Kurt Thielhorn with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (“ATF”). McNair was also ordered to pay a $5000 fine.
On August 31, 2019, McNair was found in possession of over 60 grams of methamphetamine in Petal. Pursuant to forensic analysis by the DEA, the methamphetamine was determined to be approximately 97% pure. McNair also had a firearm at the time of his arrest.
Prior to the instant offense, McNair had previously been convicted of two armed robberies in and around Hattiesburg. As a result of his criminal history, he was sentenced as a career offender.
McNair was originally indicted for this offense on January 15, 2020. He pled guilty on October 21, 2020.
Jason Denham, Resident Agent in Charge of the ATF Gulfport Field Office, provided the following statement in response to McNair’s sentencing: “This investigation just illustrates how the partnership between federal and local law enforcement can be effective at removing a violent, career offender from a community and provide an immediate impact to public safety.”
Connie Keene, Captain of the Forrest County Sheriff’s Office’s Criminal Investigative Division, stated as follows: “The Forrest County Sheriff’s Office (FCSO) is committed to working with local, state and federal law enforcement agencies as a participant in Project EJECT to ensure that violent habitual offenders are brought to justice as exhibited by the sentence imposed on Mr. Oliver McNair. In the present case, at his arrest Mr. McNair was not only a convicted career criminal at that time, but in possession of distribution-level methamphetamine, and a stolen firearm as further evidence as to the extreme danger he presented to the community. The FCSO is committed to continuing to seek out, investigate and bring to justice career criminals as part of Sheriff Charlie Sims’ commitment to serve the citizens of Forrest County courteously, respectfully and professionally in order to prevent crime and enhance safety.
This case is part of Project EJECT, an initiative by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Mississippi under the U.S. Department of Justice’s Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN) and Project Guardian. EJECT is a holistic, multi-disciplinary approach to fighting and reducing violent crime through prosecution, prevention, re-entry and awareness. EJECT stands for “Empower Justice Expel Crime Together.” PSN is bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. Project Guardian draws upon the Department’s past successful programs to reduce gun violence; enhances coordination of federal, state, local, and tribal authorities in investigating and prosecuting gun crimes; improves information-sharing by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives when a prohibited individual attempts to purchase a firearm and is denied by the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS), to include taking appropriate actions when a prospective purchaser is denied by the NICS for mental health reasons; and ensures that federal resources are directed at the criminals posing the greatest threat to our communities.
The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Forrest County Sheriff’s Office investigated the case. The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Andrew W. Eichner.