Lake Charles Men Sentenced for Illegally Possessing Firearms

Published 8:33 am Saturday, January 14, 2023

LAKE CHARLES, La. – United States Attorney Brandon B. Brown announced that two men from Lake Charles were sentenced by U.S. District Judge James D. Cain, Jr. yesterday for illegally possessing firearms.

Taylor Austin Chiasson, 33, of Lake Charles, Louisiana, was sentenced to 96 months in prison, followed by 3 years of supervised release. The charges in this case stem from an incident which occurred on March 9, 2021, when Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office deputies were dispatched to a residence in response to a noise complaint. When deputies arrived, they observed Chiasson leaving the residence carrying a small child, several bags, and what appeared to be a pistol in a holster in his hand. Deputies stopped Chiasson to discuss what was going on and had dispatch run a criminal history of him. It was determined that in fact Chiasson had prior felony convictions and was prohibited from possessing any firearm or ammunition.  He was subsequently arrested and taken into custody. Chiasson pleaded guilty to the charge of possession of a firearm by a convicted felon on August 16, 2022.  Chiasson’s prior felony convictions were for simple burglary (2009) and distribution of a controlled substance (2012).

This case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and Calcasieu Parish Sheriff’s Office and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Ladonte A. Murphy.

The second case involved Deandrus T. Jones, of Lake Charles. Jones was sentenced to 36 months in prison, followed by 3 years of supervised release. Jones was also charged with possession of a firearm by a convicted felon and he pleaded guilty on August 29, 2022.  On May 13, 2020, detectives with the Jennings Police Department executed a search warrant at Jones’ residence and found a Taurus Millennium 9mm handgun next to his bed along with a loaded magazine and other narcotics and drug paraphernalia. Jones was arrested and the subsequent investigation by law enforcement officers revealed that Jones had previously been convicted on felony charges of attempted simple burglary and possession of alprazolam. Jones knew that he was prohibited from possessing a firearm or ammunition because of his felony convictions.

This case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and Jennings Police Department and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Daniel J. Vermaelen.

These cases 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 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.