For Immediate Release
Jacksonville Man Indicted for Federal Firearm and Drug Violations
Jacksonville, FL – United States Attorney Maria Chapa Lopez announces the return of an indictment charging Cornelius Michael Turner (32, Jacksonville) with possessing a firearm as a convicted felon, possession with the intent to distribute cocaine, and possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime. If convicted, Turner faces a mandatory minimum penalty of 20 years, and up to life, in federal prison.
According to court documents, during a traffic stop conducted by the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office, officers observed Turner in his vehicle stuffing things down his pants. During a subsequent pat down, a loaded firearm and cocaine were recovered from Turner’s pants. At the time, Turner had multiple prior felony drug convictions and was therefore prohibited from possessing a firearm or ammunition under federal law.
An indictment is merely a formal charge that a defendant has committed one or more violations of federal criminal law, and every defendant is presumed innocent unless, and until, proven guilty.
This case was investigated by the Jacksonville Sheriff’s Office and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. It will be prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Ashley Washington and Kelly Karase.
Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN) is the centerpiece of the Department of Justice’s violent crime reduction efforts. PSN is an evidence-based program proven to be effective at reducing violent crime. Through PSN, a broad spectrum of stakeholders work together to identify the most pressing violent crime problems in the community and develop comprehensive solutions to address them. As part of this strategy, PSN focuses enforcement efforts on the most violent offenders and partners with locally based prevention and reentry programs for lasting reductions in crime. 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.