KC man indicted for drug trafficking, illegal machine gun following police chase through back yard in Independence

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A Kansas City, Mo., man was indicted by a federal grand jury for drug trafficking and illegally possessing a machine gun following the police chase of a stolen car driven through the backyard of an Independence, Mo., residence.

Jermel D. McCray, 28, was charged in a six-count indictment returned by a federal grand jury in Kansas City, Mo. The indictment replaces a federal criminal complaint that was filed against McCray on Jan. 23, 2023, and includes additional charges.

The federal indictment charges McCray with one count of possessing fentanyl with the intent to distribute, one count of possessing methamphetamine with the intent to distribute, one count of possessing cocaine with the intent to distribute, one count of possessing firearms, including a machine gun, in furtherance of a drug-trafficking crime, one count of illegally possessing a machine gun, and one count of being a felon in possession of firearms.

According to an affidavit filed in support of the original criminal complaint, Independence, Mo., police officers attempted to stop a black 2021 Audi Q5, which had been reported stolen, on Jan. 22, 2023. The officers pursued the vehicle when it didn’t stop after they activated the lights and siren on their marked patrol car. The Audi, driving at a high rate of speed, drove into a yard in the 2800 block of S. Baker Road. The vehicle pulled into the east side yard and continued driving toward the rear of the yard before going into a small stream in the backyard. Officers got out of their vehicle and ran toward the Audi.

One of the officers pursued an unidentified suspect, who was eventually taken into custody, while a second officer pursued McCray. The officer chased McCray on foot across E. Berry Lane and into the wooded area to the south. During the pursuit, the affidavit says, the officer saw McCray throw two guns down on the ground. McCray slipped in the snow and fell to the ground as the officer caught up to him. McCray resisted, pulling his hands away and attempting to stand up. The officer was able to put handcuffs on him, but when the officer stood him up, McCray began running again. The officer chased him and was able to push him to the ground and hold him down until another officer could help take him into custody.

The officer then went back into the wooded area and found the two firearms McCray had thrown on the ground, the affidavit says. One was a loaded Glock 9mm pistol with a 33-round extended magazine, which had been modified to be fully automatic, and the other was a loaded Glock .40-caliber pistol with a 22-round extended magazine.

Officers searched McCray during his arrest and found fentanyl, methamphetamine, and cocaine inside his jacket pocket. McCray had $5,620 in the same jacket pocket, $74 in his front pants pocket, and $529 was found on the ground nearby.

Under federal law, it is illegal for anyone who has been convicted of a felony to be in possession of any firearm or ammunition. McCray has a prior felony conviction for second-degree murder.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Brad K. Kavanaugh. It was investigated by the Independence, Mo., Police Department and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

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