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Prosecutors join LMPD's “Project Recoil” repeat offenders program

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U.S. Attorney creates new violent crime unit, maximizes penalties for most violent offenders

  LOUISVILLE – U.S. Attorney David J. Hale was joined today by Jefferson County Commonwealth’s Attorney Thomas B. Wine, Louisville Metro Police Chief Steve Conrad, Special Agent in Charge ATF Louisville, Stuart L. Lowrey, Special Agent in Charge FBI Louisville, Perrye Turner, U.S. Marshall James E. Clark and Assistant County Attorney Ann Dyke, in the announcement of the initial results of “Project Recoil,” a coordinated review and prosecution of violent gun crime arrests in metro Louisville.

The review effort includes federal and state prosecutors, agents and officers from The U.S. Attorney’s Office, the Jefferson County Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office, Jefferson County Attorney’s Office, ATF, FBI, and LMPD’s Viper and Robbery Units.

“To the metro Louisville community, we want you to know that the police officers, federal agents, and federal and state prosecutors are working together to fight violent crime in Louisville. It is a determined and unified effort. It is a priority for each of the law enforcement agencies assembled here,” stated U.S. Attorney David J. Hale during the press conference held at the U.S. Attorney’s Louisville offices.

“There is a strong bond between the Office of United States Attorney and the Office of Commonwealth’s Attorney.. Our prosecutors have a great professional working relationship. They understand the state and federal systems and know which system gives us the best opportunity to get dangerous criminals off the streets both quickly and for as long as possible, ” stated Thomas Wine, Commonwealth’s Attorney.

“By working together, we are leveraging each other’s strengths to ensure criminals that use firearms are held accountable,” stated Chief Steve Conrad, Louisville Metro Police Department.

ATF Special Agent in Charge Stuart Lowrey said, “Through Project Recoil, ATF, Louisville Metro PD, our federal law enforcement partners, and our Federal and State prosecutors are coordinating our efforts to maximize our impact on violent crime in the Louisville Metro area.  This violent crime reduction partnership plays an important role in combating violent gun crime.  It allows law enforcement to share intelligence and operate with greater unity of effort, stemming the flow of crime guns and investigating and prosecuting the people who illegally possess or use firearms to commit violent crimes.”      

“Project Recoil is an excellent example of law enforcement’s commitment to cooperation and collaboration, the most effective weapon against crime,”  said Perrye K. Turner Special Agent in Charge of the FBI in Kentucky.

This successful team approach to prosecuting violent offenders in Louisville, began five months ago, and has resulted in  three federal indictments with four defendants being charged. Each week, prosecutors from the U.S. Attorney’s Office, Commonwealth’s Attorney’s Office, and the County Attorney’s Office meet with officers from Louisville Metro Police Department’s (LMPD)Viper Unit and agents and analysts from the ATF, FBI, and U.S. Marshall’s Office. They review recent arrest reports from metro Louisville involving illegal firearms and violent crime.

Three cases developed out of Project Recoil include Troy Lamont Gaines, Jr., 22, and Shaundrell Robinson, 33,  who were charged in a 22 count federal indictment on April 2, 2013. The defendants have prior felony convictions and were charged with eleven armed robberies between December 5, 2012 and January 3, 2013 in Metro Louisville. During one robbery, a shot was allegedly fired by Gaines during a struggle with a customer. These defendants face a minimum of twenty-five years for each armed robbery, under federal statutes.  Dorris Trice III, 31, was charged as a multiple convicted felon by a federal grand jury in Louisville on June 19, 2013. The three count indictment includes possessing a firearm which he allegedly used during the robbery of a food mart on March 3, 2013.  Yesterday, a federal grand jury in Louisville, returned a four count indictment against Lavon Crayton, 31charging him with being a convicted felon in possession of a weapon, and possession with the intent to distribute heroin, “crack” cocaine and marijuana.

In conclusion, U.S. Attorney Hale stated, “Project Recoil is one piece of a comprehensive anti-violent crime strategy which emphasizes collaboration among federal, state and local law enforcement and prosecutorial agencies to more effectively investigate and prosecute violent criminals in Louisville.  By working together, and by including all of our community stakeholders in the broad effort to stem violent crime, we will reduce violence and its impact on our city.”