Three Fort Drum soldiers charged in gun shop burglary investigation

SYRACUSE — Three Fort Drum soldiers were charged on Wednesday in connection to a pair of gun shop burglaries that took place in upstate New York this September, according to a news release.

Rian Patterson, 22, Devin Diggs, 20, and Tyrease Kimmons, 20, U.S. Army soldiers stationed at Fort Drum appeared in federal court yesterday on a criminal complaint charging them in connection with the burglaries of two North Country federally licensed firearms dealers, announced United States Attorney Grant C. Jaquith and John B. DeVito, special agent in charge of the New York Field Division of the United States Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF).

The criminal complaint charges Patterson and Diggs with stealing firearms from federally licensed firearms dealers and conspiring to do so.  Tyrease Kimmons is charged with the knowing receipt of stolen firearms. The criminal complaint further alleges that 10 firearms — five pistols, three rifles, two shotguns — were taken during burglaries on Sept. 14 in Gouvernuer, and Sept. 29 in De Kalb Junction.

Patterson and Diggs are stationed at Fort Drum where they reside. Kimmons is a resident of Evans Mills and is also stationed at Fort Drum.

If convicted of the charges set forth in the complaint, the defendants face up to 10 years in prison, a maximum fine of up to $250,000, and up to three years of supervised release. The defendants are currently held in custody without bail pending a detention hearing.

The charges in the complaint are merely accusations. The defendants are presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty, the release stated.

This case is being investigated by the United States Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, U.S Army Criminal Investigation Division, the St. Lawrence County Sheriff’s Department, and the New York State Police, and is being prosecuted by Asst. U.S. Attorney Thomas Sutcliffe.

This case is brought pursuant to Project Safe Neighborhoods, the centerpiece of the Department of Justice’s violent crime reduction efforts.  PSN is an evidence-based program proven to be effective at reducing violent crime, the release stated. Through PSN, a broad spectrum of stakeholders work together to identify the most pressing violent crime problems in the community and develop comprehensive solutions to address them. As part of this strategy, PSN focuses enforcement efforts on the most violent offenders and partners with locally based prevention and reentry programs for lasting reductions in crime.

By Josh Bovee

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