A 19-year-old McKinney man was sentenced to 12 years in federal prison on drug and weapons charges in the Eastern District of Texas, announced U.S. Attorney Stephen. J. Cox recently.

Christopher Lamarr Sterkes pleaded guilty on June 1, to possession of a firearm by a drug user and possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime and was sentenced to a total of 144 months in federal prison recently by U.S. District Judge Amos Mazzant in Sherman, according to a written statement from Cox’s office.

That statement said that on March 8, 2019, Sterkes met four men in a van in Anna intending to sell them approximately 14 grams of marijuana. The men began assaulting Sterkes in an attempt to rob him of the marijuana instead of paying for it. Sterkes, armed with a pistol, managed to escape from the van and fired three shots into the van as it drove away. One of the men inside the van, 16-year-old Alejandro Camacho, was struck by the gunfire and died. Sterkes was indicted by a federal grand jury on August 14, 2019.

"This case was prosecuted as part of the Project Safe Neighborhoods Initiative. Project Safe Neighborhoods is aimed at reducing gun and gang violence; deterring illegal possession of guns, ammunition, and body armor; and improving the safety of residents in the Eastern District of Texas. Participants in the initiative include community members and organizations as well as federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies," the statement said.

This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Maureen Smith of Sherman.