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Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives

For Immediate Release

August 26, 2010

A. Brian Albritton, United States Attorney

Contact: Steve Cole
(813) 274-6136
(813) 274-6300 (fax)

St. Augustine Man Sentenced to 15 Years in Federal Prison for Gun and Drug Possession

Jacksonville, Florida — U.S. Attorney A. Brian Albritton announces that U.S. District Judge Henry Lee Adams, Jr. today sentenced Darryl Wayne Gardner (age 26, of St. Augustine) to 15 years in federal prison for possession of crack cocaine with the intent to distribute it and for possessing a firearm after being convicted of a felony. Gardner was designated an Armed Career Criminal for multiple prior felony convictions, including three prior convictions for selling cocaine and a prior convictions for resisting arrest with violence.Gardner had been found found guilty at trial on May 26, 2010.

According to court documents, deputies with the St. John’s County Sheriff’s Office responded to a call at The Florida Club, a condominium complex in St. Augustine. During the investigation, deputies stopped the car that Gardner was driving and subsequently discovered under the seat, two firearms, a cigar tube of cocaine base (“crack” cocaine) and several bags of marijuana. Further investigation revealed that one of the firearms, a .45 caliber pistol, had been reported stolen.

The case was investigated by the St. John’s County Sheriff’s Office and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF), Jacksonville Division. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Dineen A. Baker.

This is another case prosecuted as a part of the Department of Justice’s Project Safe Neighborhoods program - a nationwide, gun-violence reduction initiative led by ATF. United States Attorney A. Brian Albritton, along with Virginia O’Brien, Special Agent in Charge, ATF Tampa Field Division is coordinating the Project Safe Neighborhoods effort here in the Middle District of Florida in cooperation with federal, state, and local law enforcement officials. The program’s objective is to reduce violent crime by locating and seizing unlawfully possessed guns and then swiftly prosecuting the offenders.