Wednesday, October 19, 2022

Lamar Man Sentenced to 20 Years for Illegal Firearms, Meth Trafficking

Southwest Honkeys Gang Member Led Deputies on High-Speed Chase

SPRINGFIELD, Mo. – A Lamar, Mo., man was sentenced in federal court today for illegally possessing firearms and methamphetamine to distribute.

Jerold G. Lake, 40, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge M. Douglas Harpool to 20 years in federal prison without parole. Lake was sentenced as a career offender due to his prior felony convictions.

On Nov. 17, 2021, Lake pleaded guilty to one count of being a felon in possession of a firearm, one count of possessing methamphetamine with the intent to distribute, and one count of possessing a firearm in furtherance of a drug-trafficking crime.

Lake was the passenger in a vehicle stopped by Barton County, Mo., sheriff’s deputies in Lamar on May 15, 2020. Deputies searched the vehicle and found a stolen Glock .380-caliber semi-automatic handgun under Lake’s seat.

On another occasion, Lake was driving a vehicle that Vernon County, Mo., sheriff’s deputies attempted to stop in Nevada, Mo., after observing a traffic violation on Nov. 9, 2020. Lake fled with deputies in pursuit until his vehicle struck spike strips and came to rest in a ditch. During the chase, Lake’s vehicle reached speeds between 90 and 100 miles per hour, drove on the wrong side of the road, forced oncoming traffic to evade him, swerved wildly through traffic, and failed to yield for stop signs.

Deputies arrested Lake, who was in possession of 4.2 grams of methamphetamine, 3.2 grams of marijuana, and $1,072 in cash. They found a black backpack on the driver’s seat of Lake’s vehicle that contained 35.28 grams of marijuana and drug paraphernalia. Deputies canvassed the route of the pursuit and found a Glock .45-caliber semi-automatic handgun that had been reported stolen from a law enforcement officer’s vehicle in Crawford County, Kansas. Deputies also found a bag that contained 18.2 grams of methamphetamine along the highway.

According to court documents, Lake is a member of the Southwest Honkeys, a violent gang in southwest Missouri. He has Southwest Honkeys tattoos on his chest and stomach, and a skull with “SS” lightning bolts on his back.

Under federal law, it is illegal for anyone who has been convicted of a felony to be in possession of any firearm or ammunition. Lake has two prior felony convictions for possession of methamphetamine, two prior felony convictions for possession of a chemical with intent to manufacture methamphetamine, and prior felony convictions for resisting a lawful stop (in which he fled from officers at speeds up to 130 miles per hour before crashing into a yard), receiving stolen property, conspiracy to deliver or conceal a controlled substance to a correctional facility, attempting to steal a motor vehicle, first degree assault and armed criminal action. Lake also accumulated numerous violations while on probation and parole, and while incarcerated.

Lake also has cases pending for arrests during 2020 (following his release from state prison in January 2020) in Barton County for first degree domestic assault, armed criminal action, and unlawful possession of a firearm; in Vernon County for first degree assault; and in Newton County, Mo., for fleeing an attempted traffic stop.

This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Byron H. Black and Assistant U.S. Attorney Josephine L. Stockard. It was investigated by the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Barton County, Mo., Sheriff’s Department, the Lamar, Mo., Police Department, the Vernon County, Mo., Sheriff’s Department, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and the Missouri State Highway Patrol.

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