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Gates County felon locked up on weapon charge

RALEIGH – Anthony Eugene Kee of Hobbsville was sentenced here June 10 to 18 months in prison for possession of a firearm by a felon.

Kee pled guilty to the charge during a court proceeding on March 4.

According to court documents and statements made during hearings, the Gates County Sheriff’s Office began investigating the defendant in February 2020 following citizen complaints about drug activity at his Hobbsville residence. At the time, Kee already had two previous state convictions for drug felonies.

After a controlled buy of crack cocaine and surveillance of apparent drug activity, law enforcement obtained a search warrant, which they executed the morning of July 2, 2020.

Kee was home and told officers that he had felt them coming. He said he was not concerned about the drugs but was more worried about having a gun. He then directed officers to a blue Toyota in the front yard, sitting on jacks, where they recovered a black Hi-Point 9mm pistol on the floor of the trunk. In the glove compartment and center console, officers also found several rounds of shotgun and 9mm ammunition.

In the house and a shed on the property, officers recovered a variety of drug packaging materials and a small amount of marijuana.

Kee was taken to the Sheriff’s Office in Gatesville where he waived his rights and agreed to an interview. He admitted to selling cocaine beginning in 2011, although none had been at his house at the time of the search. He said he bought a gun years ago on the streets for protection.

G. Norman Acker, III, Acting U.S. Attorney for the Eastern District of North Carolina made the announcement after sentencing by U.S. District Judge Terrence W. Boyle.

The Gates County Sheriff’s Office and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) conducted the investigation.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Jake D. Pugh prosecuted the case.