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North Carolina man convicted of firearm charge

A federal jury convicted a Lumberton man August 25, 2021 on a charge of possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, according to a press release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Eastern District of North Carolina.

According to court records and evidence presented at trial, an officer with the Lumberton Police Department observed a red Nissan Rogue fail to stop at a stop sign. The officer approached the vehicle and contacted the driver and sole occupant of the vehicle, Emanuel Mann Billings. “Billings admitted that he ran the stop sign, and the officer took his identification where he learned Billings was a convicted felon,” stated the release. “The officer reapproached the vehicle and asked whether Billings possessed anything illegal in the vehicle. Billings admitted that he possessed a firearm in the center console of the vehicle.”

According to the release, during the course of the investigation, law enforcement officers were able to review open-sourced social media that showed Billings had been in possession of the firearm for months.

“Law enforcement also learned that Billings was associated with the street gang, Folk Nation,” the release continued. “Billings had previously been convicted of multiple counts of robbery with a dangerous weapon, possession of a weapon of mass destruction, and assault inflicting physical injury of a detention employee.”

Billings faces a minimum penalty of 180 months in prison when sentenced in November 2021.

G. Norman Acker III, acting U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina, made the announcement after U.S. District Judge James C. Dever III accepted the verdict. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and Lumberton Police Department  are investigating the case and Assistant U.S. Attorneys Chad Rhoades and John Harris are prosecuting.

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