For Immediate Release
Jacksonville Gang Member Sentenced to Five Years in Federal Prison for Selling Crack Cocaine
Jacksonville, Florida – U.S. District Judge Brian J. Davis has sentenced Natario Bernard Peterson (22, Jacksonville) to five years in federal prison for distributing crack cocaine. Peterson had pleaded guilty on March 27, 2019.
According to court documents and information presented at sentencing, Peterson, a mid-level member of the Rollin’ 20s gang, sold crack cocaine to an undercover detective with the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office (JSO) on three occasions in 2018. On one of those occasions, Peterson teamed up with co-defendant Dashawn Rose to sell the crack cocaine. During the transaction, Rose was concealing a large, AR-style pistol with a drum magazine in his pants.
On July 18, 2019, Rose pleaded guilty to distribution of crack cocaine and possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime. He faces a mandatory minimum sentence of five years, and up to life, in federal prison. His sentencing is set for October 30, 2019.
At the time, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, in conjunction with JSO, was conducting a long-term investigation of the Rollin’ 20s gang. In September 2018, Peterson admitted that he had authorized another Rollin’ 20s gang member, David Brian Edwards, to carjack his ex-girlfriend at gunpoint. Edwards entered his ex-girlfriend’s vehicle and forced her, at gunpoint, to follow another vehicle, which was driven by Peterson. After the vehicles came to a stop, Edwards put his gun to the victim’s head and told her that he was there to kill her. Edwards then hit the victim in the face multiple times with the gun and kicked her as she escaped from the vehicle.
Edwards was prosecuted by the State Attorney’s Office and sentenced to 20 years in state prison for his role in the armed carjacking.
In September and October 2018, Peterson stated his intention to prevent the carjacking victim and a witness from testifying against him. In one conversation, he stated that he was going to get the witness “out the way” and “we gonna have a funeral.”
“This sentencing represents ATF’s commitment to continually work with our law enforcement partners to protect the citizens of our communities from those that choose to commit violent firearms-related crimes,” said ATF Special Agent in Charge Daryl McCrary.
This case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office, and the State Attorney’s Office, Fourth Judicial Circuit. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Laura Cofer Taylor.
This is another case prosecuted as part of the Department of Justice’s “Project Safe Neighborhoods” Program (PSN), which is a nationwide, crime reduction strategy aimed at decreasing violent crime in communities. It involves a comprehensive approach to public safety — one that includes investigating and prosecuting crimes, along with prevention and reentry efforts. In the Middle District of Florida, U.S. Attorney Maria Chapa Lopez coordinates PSN efforts in cooperation with various federal, state, and local law enforcement officials.