Three Defendants Sentenced for Federal Drug and Firearms Crimes

Published 3:25 pm Thursday, October 21, 2021

LAFAYETTE, La. – Acting United States Attorney Alexander C. Van Hook announced that United States District Judge James D. Cain, Jr. sentenced three defendants to time in federal prison for federal crimes involving drug trafficking and illegal possession of firearms.

Albert Williams, 31, of Beaumont, Texas, was sentenced to 46 months in prison, followed by 3 years of supervised release, for possession with intent to distribute cocaine. On April 30, 2019 Mega Bus Tours contacted the Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office in reference to a bomb scare/threat at Mile Marker 26 on Interstate 10. Law enforcement and fire department personnel arrived on the scene and were standing near the bus as the passengers exited. Williams was a passenger on the bus and when he saw law enforcement officers approaching him, fled the scene on foot carrying a bag. Deputies pursued Williams and saw him place a black pair of sweatpants into a drainage ditch. Williams was apprehended and law enforcement officers located the pants in the ditch. The pants contained a Ziploc bag with a compressed brick of suspected cocaine. The Southwest Louisiana Criminalistics Laboratory in Lake Charles tested the substance and determined that it was in fact cocaine with a weight of 1.006 kilograms.

The Department of Homeland Security, Bureau of Immigration and Customs Enforcement, the Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office and Louisiana State Police investigated the case. Assistant U.S. Attorney Daniel J. McCoy prosecuted the case.

Byron Lamar Jackson, 31, of Lake Charles, Louisiana, was sentenced to 51 months in prison, followed by 3 years of supervised release, for possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. On January 2, 2020, Lake Charles Police Department officers were dispatched to the intersection of Church and Grace Streets in reference to an individual possessing a firearm. Officers arrived at the scene and after speaking with witnesses, were given consent to search a nearby residence to search for the firearm. While searching the residence, law enforcement officers located a pistol inside a duffle bag used by Jackson. Jackson admitted to officers that he did in fact possess the firearm. As an individual having previously been convicted of a felony crime, Jackson knew that he was prohibited from possessing the firearm. His prior felony convictions are for possession of controlled substances (2008 and 2015); and illegal use of weapons or danger dangerous instrumentalities (2015 and 2018).

The ATF, Lake Charles Police Department and Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office investigated the case. Assistant U.S. Attorney Daniel J. Vermaelen prosecuted the case.

David O’Neil a/k/a “Monster,” 41, of Leesville, Louisiana, was sentenced to 84 months in prison, followed by 4 years of supervised release. On June 29, 2021, O’Neil pleaded guilty to a Bill of Information charging him with possession of a firearm by a convicted felon and possession with intent to distribute methamphetamine. Investigators with the Vernon Parish Sheriff’s Office executed a search warrant at O’Neil’s residence on January 4, 2019 and during their search, discovered a pistol in the bedroom where O’Neil slept. In addition, law enforcement officers found plastic bags containing suspected methamphetamine. The substance was analyzed by the crime lab and confirmed it to be methamphetamine. O’Neil has prior felony convictions for possession with intent to distribute controlled substances and possession of controlled substances in Vernon Parish (2018) and as such is prohibited from possessing a firearm or ammunition.

The ATF and Vernon Parish Sheriff’s Office investigated the case. Assistant U.S. Attorney Daniel J. Vermaelen prosecuted the case.

The cases involving Byron Lamar Jackson and David O’Neil are 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 make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. PSN is part of the Department’s renewed focus on targeting violent criminals, directing all U.S. Attorney’s Offices to work in partnership with federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement and the local community to develop effective, locally based strategies to reduce violent crime. To learn more about Project Safe Neighborhoods, go to www.justice.gov/psn.