Cooke County felon sentenced for federal firearms violations

Eastern District of Texas
An Eastern District of Texas Courthouse sits in downtown Sherman.

A Gainesville convicted felon has been sentenced to federal prison for firearms violations in the Eastern District of Texas.

William Randall Brannan, 39, was convicted by a jury on Feb. 21, 2020 of being a felon in possession of a firearm and two counts of possession of a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime.  Brannan was sentenced to 272 months in federal prison today by U.S. District Judge Sean D. Jordan.

“Getting firearms out of the hands of prohibited persons is a critical part of the Department’s efforts to reduce violent crime in our neighborhoods,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Nicholas J. Ganjei. “Today’s sentence sends a strong message that violent criminals who utilize firearms to deal narcotics will be aggressively prosecuted and held accountable to fullest extent of the law.”

According to information presented in court, in January 2019, Brannan, while delivering methamphetamine, discharged a firearm in a Gainesville residence, and again outside the home, while attempting to intimidate others into returning methamphetamine which he believed had been stolen from him.  On Feb. 28, 2019, Brannan was located in Arlington, Texas and fled as law enforcement officers attempted to arrest him.  He then led police on a high-speed chase before crashing the vehicle.  The gun used in the Gainesville shooting was found in the vehicle.  Further investigation revealed Brannan was a convicted felon and prohibited from owning or possessing firearms or ammunition.  Brannan was indicted by a federal grand jury on March 14, 2019.

This case was prosecuted as part of the joint federal, state, and local Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN) Program, 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.  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.

This case was investigated by the Cooke County Sheriff’s Office, the Arlington Police Department and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Matthew Johnson and Chris Eason.