DOJ Seal

Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
Southern District of Mississippi

For Immediate Release

Friday, April 2, 2021
Darren J. LaMarca
, United States Attorney

Philadelphia Man Pleads Guilty to Possession of a Firearm in Furtherance of a Drug Trafficking Crime

After Brandishing a Firearm at a Woman’s House, Career Offender was Arrested with Methamphetamine and Multiple Firearms

Jackson, Miss. – James Nelson Peeples, Jr., 35, of Philadelphia, Mississippi, pled guilty today before U.S. Chief District Judge Daniel P. Jordan III to possessing a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime, announced Acting U.S. Attorney Darren J. LaMarca and Kurt Thielhorn, Special Agent in Charge of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

On July 15, 2018 a woman called the Philadelphia Police Department and reported that a man she knew as “P James” was at her house threatening her with a gun. An officer responded immediately and spoke with the woman. The officer then left the woman’s residence and quickly located Peeples nearby driving a black Honda Accord. The officer stopped Peeples and when he approached Peeples’ vehicle saw Peeples attempting to hide a handgun. Peeples also appeared to be trying to put a bag of marijuana in his pants.

Peeples was arrested and a search was conducted of his person and his vehicle. Methamphetamine, Marijuana and three handguns were found. Peeples has multiple felony convictions in Neshoba County for drug sale offenses and for being a convicted felon in possession of a firearm. Peeples later gave a full confession to officers with PPD, a DEA Task Force Officer and an ATF Special Agent. Peeples admitted that he sold methamphetamine and that he had taken two of the guns found in trade for methamphetamine. Peeples also admitted that he was willing to use firearms to settle his disputes on the street.

Peeples was indicted by a federal grand jury on January 15, 2020.

He will be sentenced on July 23, 2021 by Judge Jordan and faces a minimum of five years in prison and a maximum of life in prison, as well as a $250,000 fine.

The case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Charles W. Kirkham.

New Orleans Field Division