SEX OFFENDER TO SERVE TEN YEAR SENTENCE FOR FIREARM POSSESSION
On June 24, 2015, James Randall Matthews, age 47, of Hurley, pled guilty in the Buchanan County Circuit Court to two counts of Possession of a Firearm by a Violent Convicted Felon. Matthews was sentenced to serve ten years in prison, the statutory maximum sentence that could be imposed by the Court fort those charges. Having been convicted of rape in Fulton County, Ohio in 1999, Matthews is classified as a violent felon under Virginia law.
According to evidence presented by Commonwealth’s Attorney, Gerald Arrington, Narcotics Task Force Officers executed a search warrant on Matthew’s home. Although the search failed to yield any narcotics, during their interview, Matthews admitted to possessing a 22-caliber Phoenix pistol in July 2014, and a Stevens 12 gauge shotgun later in the same year.
When asked for comment, Gerald Arrington stated, “it is unacceptable for violent felons to possess firearms because it poses a grave risk to the safety of our community. This was an opportunity for the Commonwealth to get a violent sex offender off of the streets and out of our community. I was pleased to see Mr. Matthews receive a 10 year active prison sentence as a result.”