Memphis, TN – Billy Drain, 38, has pleaded guilty to carjacking and brandishing a firearm during a crime of violence. Acting U.S. Attorney Joseph C. Murphy Jr., announced the guilty plea today.
According to information presented in court, on February 24, 2020, the victim, J.K., advised that a male suspect who he knew as "Eric" asked him for a ride. The victim recognized Eric as the brother of a friend who had recently passed away. The suspect was accompanied by an unknown female. The victim drove the suspects to various locations in Memphis, when they decided to carjack the victim. The male suspect pulled out a silver 9mm handgun and pointed it at the victim and said, "mane get out the car right now or I'll kill you." The suspects drove off with his car, a silver 2008 Chrysler PT Cruiser, his phone, and house keys.
On March 15, 2020, officers and deputies in Yazoo City, Mississippi, observed Drain, (who was known to them to have outstanding warrants), driving a silver 2008 PT Cruiser. They engaged in a vehicle pursuit, when Drain attempted to ram the police vehicles. Ultimately, Drain crashed the vehicle and ran towards a nearby house. Once inside the home, Drain grabbed a 1-year-old baby, holding the baby hostage as the police attempted to arrest him. Drain was holding the baby by the throat and a cell phone to the baby's head, as if the phone was a weapon. Law enforcement safely recovered the baby and subdued Drain.
The vehicle Drain wrecked was determined to be the same vehicle stolen from the victim J.K. who later identified Drain as the suspect. Drain's full name is Billy Voneric Drain. Charges in Mississippi against Drain are still pending.
On June 9, 2021, Drain entered a guilty plea to both charges in the indictment.
Sentencing is scheduled for September 9, 2021, before U.S. District Judge Jon P. McCalla.
This case was investigated by the Memphis Police Department’s Violent Crimes Unit (VCU) and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).
Assistant U.S. Attorney Elizabeth J. Rogers and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Samuel D. Winnig are prosecuting this case on behalf of the government. SAUSA Winnig is currently assigned from the Shelby County District Attorney General’s Office for the purpose of prosecuting violent crimes and firearms offenses in federal court.
Department of Justice
Office of the U.S. Attorney
Western District of Tennessee