Man sentenced to prison for stolen gun found in Perry traffic stop

Gary Buck, of Ellaville, will serve eight and a half years in federal prison.

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PERRY, Georgia (41NBC/WMGT) – A Georgia man, with a lengthy criminal history, is facing prison time for a stolen gun following a 2019 traffic stop in Perry.

U.S. District Judge Tilman “Tripp” Self sentenced 39-year-old Gary Buck, of Ellaville, to eight and a half years in federal prison. Buck pleaded guilty to one count of possession of a stolen firearm.

On May 1, 2019, a Perry Police Department officer stopped Buck for a traffic violation on Interstate 75. The officer reported smelling marijuana from Buck’s car, and called for backup to search the car. Officers reported finding a marijuana “blunt” in the backseat and a Hi-Point 9mm pistol on the floorboard.

According to the investigation findings, Buck admitted multiple times, in recorded calls from jail and to an FBI agent, that he knew the gun was stolen.

“It is both illegal and dangerous to possess a stolen firearm,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Leary. “This office will continue to work hard to take stolen guns off the streets and out of the hands of convicted felons. I want to thank the Perry Police Department, ATF and FBI for their work in this investigation.”

Buck has a criminal history where he was recently convicted in Sumter County (Georgia) Superior Court in February 2017 of felony burglary and possession of a firearm by a convicted felon.

“I think this sentence makes it very clear that criminals who repeatedly break the law and continue to possess illegal firearms, will be held accountable with lengthy prison terms,” said Chris Hacker, Special Agent in Charge of FBI Atlanta.

The investigation was conducted as part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN). The case was investigated by the Perry Police Department, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) and FBI. Assistant U.S. Attorney Steven Ouzts prosecuted the case for the Government.

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Shelby Coates is an evening anchor/producer at 41NBC News. She anchors the 5, 5:30, and 6 evening newscasts. She also works behind the scenes producing the 5:00pm and managing newsroom assignments. She returns to 41NBC after working in Evansville, Indiana as the Morning/Noon Anchor and Executive Producer for WEVV. Shelby also spent time in Spartanburg, South Carolina, where she spent three years anchoring and producing the weekend morning newscasts at WSPA-TV. She also worked as a general assignment reporter, receiving several honors for her investigative and consumer reporting. Shelby has spent time working as a news anchor/reporter in Chattanooga, Tennessee; Macon, Georgia; and Abilene, Texas. Shelby is a native of Clarksville, Tennessee. She graduated from Abilene Christian University in Texas with a bachelor’s degree in Broadcast Journalism and Mass Communication and a minor in sociology. Shelby has a passion for empowering local communities, church ministry, public speaking, strengthening women and mentoring young people.