St. Croix Man Gets Probation For Having Loaded Semi-Automatic Weapon In A School Zone
CHRISTIANSTED — A St. Croix man who had a loaded semi-automatic weapon in a Frederiksted supermarket has been handed a sentence of probation by a federal judge.
Samuel Melendez, 43, was sentenced on November 21 after being convicted of possession of firearm in a school zone, U.S. Attorney Gretchen C.F. Shappert said on Friday.
Chief U.S. District Court Judge Wilma Lewis sentenced Melendez to five years of federal probation, a $1000 fine and ordered Melendez to pay a special assessment of $100.
According to court documents, on October 8, 2018, Virgin Island Police department officers responded to the H & R Supermarket in Frederiksted after receiving a report concerning an individual brandishing a firearm.
During a pat down search, police found that Melendez had a Jimenez Arms .380 semi-automatic pistol near the Frederiksted vegetable market, which is within 1,000 feet of St. Patrick’s Elementary School.
The firearm was tested and found to be operable. Melendez did not have a valid license to possess a firearm, and the firearm had moved in and affected interstate commerce.
The case was investigated by the Virgin Islands Police Department (VIPD) and U.S. Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).
It was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Melissa P. Ortiz.