Hawks indicted

Published 10:21 am Tuesday, May 8, 2018

RALEIGH – Former Gates County Sheriff’s Sgt. Brandon Scott Hawks was indicted here Monday by a federal grand jury.

Robert J. Higdon, Jr., US Attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina, said the indictment was for two counts of possession of a stolen firearm, and one count of possession with the intent to distribute a quantity of controlled substances.

Each of the firearm offenses carries a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison, and the drug offense carries a maximum penalty of 20 years in prison.

Hawks, age 33, was arrested by the NC State Bureau of Investigation in December of last year. He had been employed since 2006 with the Gates County Sheriff’s Office.

The indictment alleges that beginning on July 23, 2017, and continuing until December 6, 2017, Hawks possessed a stolen firearm, specifically a Glock 26 handgun. The prosecution alleges that the firearm was unlawfully seized by Hawks during a traffic stop on July 23, 2017 and was never submitted as evidence to the Gates County Sheriff’s Office. That weapon was found at Hawks’ residence on December 6, 2017 (the day of his arrest by the SBI and subsequent termination of employment with the Gates County Sheriff’s Office).

Count two of the indictment charges Hawks with possessing a stolen firearm from May 27, 2014 until December 6, 2017.

Count three charges that on December 6, 2017, Hawks possessed, with the intent to distribute, several controlled substances, to include heroin, crack cocaine, cocaine, fentanyl, oxycodone, morphine, methamphetamine, and marijuana. The controlled substances were considered property of the Gates County Sheriff’s Office and were seized during criminal investigations.

This case is part of the Take Back North Carolina Initiative, which was newly implemented by United States Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of North Carolina. This initiative emphasizes the regional assignment of federal prosecutors to work with law enforcement and District Attorney’s Offices on a sustained basis in those communities to reduce the violent crime rate, drug trafficking, and crimes against law enforcement.

The Federal Bureau of Investigation and State Bureau of Investigation conducted the criminal investigation of this case. Assistant United States Attorney Peggah B. Wilson is handling the prosecution of this case for the government.

About Cal Bryant

Cal Bryant, a 40-year veteran of the newspaper industry, serves as the Editor at Roanoke-Chowan Publications, publishers of the Roanoke-Chowan News-Herald, Gates County Index, and Front Porch Living magazine.

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