United States Attorney's Office for the Eastern District of Texas

04/15/2024 | Press release | Distributed by Public on 04/15/2024 16:41

Port Arthur man sentenced for federal firearms violation

Press Release

Port Arthur man sentenced for federal firearms violation

Monday, April 15, 2024
For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of Texas

BEAUMONT, Texas - A Port Arthur man has been sentenced to federal prison for a firearms violation in the Eastern District of Texas, announced U.S. Attorney Damien M. Diggs.

DeShawn Ranard Willis, 42, pleaded guilty on May 18, 2023, to being a felon in possession of a firearm and was sentenced to 63 months in federal prison by U.S. District Judge Marcia Crone on April 15, 2024.

According to information presented in court, on Dec. 29, 2021, Willis was arrested after a Port Arthur Police Department officer stopped the vehicle he was driving for a defective headlight on Gulfway Drive. Willis admitted to possessing a firearm underneath the driver's seat. Officers recovered the pistol, which was loaded with 15 rounds of ammunition. Further investigation revealed Willis was a six-time convicted felon and prohibited by federal law from owning or possessing firearms or ammunition. Willis was indicted by a federal grand jury on June 8, 2022 and charged with firearms violations.

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and gun violence, and to make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. On May 26, 2021, the department launched a violent crime reduction strategy strengthening PSN based on these core principles: fostering trust and legitimacy in our communities, supporting community-based organizations that help prevent violence from occurring in the first place, setting focused and strategic enforcement priorities, and measuring the results.

This case was investigated by the Port Arthur Police Department and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Joseph R. Batte.


Updated April 15, 2024
Project Safe Neighborhoods
Firearms Offenses