Hattiesburg, Miss. – Kedrick Lee, 23, of Hattiesburg, pled guilty today before Senior U.S. District Judge Keith Starrett to violently robbing a business in Hattiesburg, announced U.S. Attorney Mike Hurst and Special Agent in Charge Kurt Thielhorn with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
On March 31, 2019, Lee and a criminal associate, D’Andre Garry, robbed a Family Dollar store located in Hattiesburg, Mississippi. As Lee held the cashier at gunpoint, his co-defendant emptied the cash register. The robbery was captured by store surveillance and Garry was quickly apprehended by Hattiesburg Police Department officers.
Lee will be sentenced by Judge Starrett on January 12, 2021, at 9:45 a.m. He faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. Co-defendant Garry pled guilty on January 9, 2020, and was sentenced on August 18, 2020, to 50 months in federal prison followed by 3 years of supervised release
This case is part of Project EJECT, an initiative by the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of Mississippi under the U.S. Department of Justice’s Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN) and Project Guardian. EJECT is a holistic, multi-disciplinary approach to fighting and reducing violent crime through prosecution, prevention, re-entry and awareness. EJECT stands for “Empower Justice Expel Crime Together.” PSN is bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. 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.
The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and Hattiesburg Police Department investigated the case. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Andrew W. Eichner.