GRAND RAPIDS, MICHIGAN — U.S. Attorney Andrew Birge announced that Monquel Dejuan-Lee Paulk, formerly of Lansing, Michigan, was sentenced to 180 months’ imprisonment by U.S. District Judge Hala Y. Jarbou. Paulk pleaded guilty to a federal indictment charging him with being a felon in possession of a firearm earlier this year. Upon release, Paulk will be supervised for 4 years. Paulk was facing a mandatory sentence of 15 years because of a history of previous violent crimes, including assault with a dangerous weapon and unarmed robbery.
On July 14, 2020, Paulk appeared in the 30th Circuit Court in Ingham County and received a sentence of 36 to 270 months’ custody for the offense of unarmed robbery. Paulk was ordered to report to the Ingham County Jail by 5:00 p.m. that day to begin his sentence but did not appear. On August 19, 2020, Lansing Police Department officers and Michigan State Police Troopers conducted surveillance and located and arrested Paulk and another person in Lansing. At the time of his arrest, Paulk possessed a loaded 9mm pistol while seated inside a vehicle; the pistol had previously been reported stolen. Police found additional ammunition and a second firearm, a 10mm pistol, inside the same vehicle. National Integrated Ballistic Information Network testing determined that both firearms had been used in multiple 2020 shootings in the Lansing area. Three of those shootings resulted in non-fatal injuries.
U.S. Attorney Birge said, “My office is committed to supporting local partner law enforcement agencies to prevent, interrupt, and deter violent crime – particularly gun violence. Those who, like Mr. Paulk, illegally possess guns traceable to shootings will get our attention and may face a very long time safely away from the communities they endanger.”
Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives Acting Special Agent in Charge Keith Krolcyzk said, “The National Integrated Ballistic Information Network (NIBIN) is one of the many intelligence-sharing resources used in collaboration among Federal, State, and local prosecutors and law enforcement ensuring maximum impact in reducing the threat of gun violence.”
Interim Lansing Police Chief Ellery Sosebee said, “Historically, partnerships in Law Enforcement lead to success. The Lansing Police Department Violent Crime Initiative team alongside our State and Federal partners are committed to ensuring crimes involving firearms receive all the resources we have available to hold offenders accountable.”
This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Kristin M. Pinkston and investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives and the Lansing Police Department as part of the Department of Justice’s Project Safe Neighborhoods, a nationwide initiative to reduce violent crime. The U.S. Attorney’s Office, county prosecutor’s offices, and federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement work closely together to identify and prosecute individuals responsible for driving violent crime in our communities in order to make neighborhoods safer for everyone. Individuals with information or concerns about violent crime or firearms offenses should contact local law enforcement. For more information about Project Safe Neighborhoods, visit: https://www.justice.gov/psn
Department of Justice
Office of the U.S. Attorney
Western District of Michigan