March 27, 2003
Sean Caine, 410-576-6357
WOMAN JAILED FOR ROLE IN
STOLEN GUN "RING"
General J. Joseph Curran, Jr. announced today that Cheryl Kimberly
Shorter, 29, 3600 9th Street, Baltimore, has been sentenced for
her role in the illegal importation, possession, and sale of stolen
firearms. Baltimore City Circuit Court Judge Alfred Nance found
Shorter guilty of committing the following 15 offenses: 10 counts
of Importation of a Regulated Firearm for Illegal Sale, two counts
of Possession of Stolen Property Valued Over $500, two counts of
Conspiracy to Illegally Sell Regulated Firearms, and one count of
Unlawful Transportation of a Handgun. Judge Nance sentenced Shorter
to a total of 10 years in the Department of Corrections, with all
but three years suspended. Judge Nance further placed Shorter on
three years of supervised probation upon her release, and ordered
that she pay a $3,000 fine.
conspirators have already been found guilty and sentenced for their
roles. Evelyn Renee Alston was sentenced to a total of five years,
with all but 18 months suspended, and CDon Chezere Thompson
received 10 years in jail, with all but three years suspended.
facts underlying the convictions are that on May 15, 2002, Anne
Arundel County Police officers received information that two black
females in a silver Nissan Pathfinder were attempting to sell handguns
in the area of Freetown Village, located in Glen Burnie. The officers
conducted a traffic stop and discovered three Smith & Wesson
.38 Special Revolvers and 100 rounds of ammunition.Further investigation
revealed that the firearms belonged to Argenbright Security Company,
of Arlington, Virginia. A company representative confirmed that
12 guns were stolen and that Shorter was a current employee of the
company. Thompson, her then boyfriend, was a former employee. Upon
questioning, Shorter admitted that she stole the firearms from Argenbright.
Shorter further stated that she and Thompson planned on selling
the weapons because she needed money for a new car. Alston was later
interviewed by the Maryland State Police, and she admitted to helping
Shorter locate people in Freetown who would be interested in buying
the guns because she also needed money.In an attempt to locate the
remaining stolen weapons, a search was conducted at the Baltimore
City residence of Shorter and Thompson. Three more of the stolen
Smith & Wesson .38 Special Revolvers, and approximately 400
rounds of ammunition, were found and seized. When asked where the
remaining guns were located, Shorter stated that Thompson must have
taken them. Further investigation showed that Thompson sold at least
four of the handguns. Thompson was located, taken into custody,
and interviewed regarding his role in the sale of the stolen weapons.
Thompson stated that Shorter came home with the guns and admitted
to selling four of them, but claimed he did not know the buyers
name or whereabouts. Troopers from the Maryland State Police are
currently looking for this individual.
an additional stolen weapon from Argenbright was recovered during
the execution of an unrelated drug search warrant in Baltimore City.
Investigation as to how that individual obtained one of the stolen
weapons, and the whereabouts of the remaining unrecovered stolen
handguns, is continuing.
am pleased that all three defendants in this case were convicted
and sentenced to serve time in jail for their role in this stolen
gun ring," Attorney General Curran said. "The
message needs to be clearly sent that involvement in gun-related
crimes will result in jail time."
case was investigated by the Maryland State Police Firearms Investigation
Unit and Anne Arundel County Police Department, with assistance
provided by the Federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms
and the Baltimore City Police Department. The case was prosecuted
by the Firearms Trafficking Unit of the Office of the Attorney General
under Operation Crime Gun, which is funded from grants received
from the Governors Office on Crime Control and Prevention,
and the Maryland State Police Cease Fire Council.