NEWPORT NEWS, Va. – A Newport News man, and seven-time prior convicted felon, pleaded guilty today to unlawfully possessing a firearm.
According to court documents, Paul Eric Sherrod Parham, 38, was walking in the area of 36th Street and Chestnut Avenue in Newport News on the evening of September 18, 2019. Parham had outstanding warrants at the time for abduction, larceny, assault and battery, and withholding a credit card belonging to another individual. An individual who knew Parham, and who was aware of Parham’s outstanding warrants, notified Newport News Police of Parham’s precise location. When officers encountered Parham, confirmed his identity and felony status, and began to take him into custody, Parham notified the officers that he was unlawfully carrying a loaded SCCY, CPX-1, 9mm semiautomatic handgun.
Parham pleaded guilty to being a felon in possession of a firearm. Parham faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison when sentenced on January 4, 2021. Actual sentences for federal crimes are typically less than the maximum penalties. A federal district court judge will determine any sentence after taking into account the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.
This case is part of Project Guardian, the Department of Justice’s signature initiative to reduce gun violence and enforce federal firearms laws. Initiated by the Attorney General in the fall of 2019, Project Guardian draws upon the Department’s past successful programs to reduce gun violence; enhances coordination of federal, state, local, and tribal authorities in investigating and prosecuting gun crimes; improves information-sharing by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives when a prohibited individual attempts to purchase a firearm and is denied by the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS), to include taking appropriate actions when a prospective purchaser is denied by the NICS for mental health reasons; and ensures that federal resources are directed at the criminals posing the greatest threat to our communities. Click here for more information about Project Guardian.
G. Zachary Terwilliger, U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of Virginia; Ashan M. Benedict, Special Agent in Charge of the ATF’s Washington Field Division; and Steve R. Drew, Chief of Newport News Police, made the announcement after Senior U.S. District Judge Henry E. Hudson accepted the plea. Assistant U.S. Attorney Peter G. Osyf is prosecuting the case.
A copy of this press release is located on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Virginia. Related court documents and information are located on the website of the District Court for the Eastern District of Virginia or on PACER by searching for Case No. 4:20-cr-009.