A trio of U.S. Army soldiers in Tennessee have been charged with funneling illegal firearms to Chicago that were found after a mass shooting earlier this year that left one person dead and several others wounded on the city’s Southwest Side.
Demarcus Adams, 21, and 22-year-olds Jarius Brunson and Brandon Miller — each of whom are enlisted members of the U.S. Army stationed at Fort Campbell in Clarksville, Tennessee — were arrested Tuesday morning by agents with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives.
Each man was charged in federal court on counts of transferring a firearm to an out-of-state resident, making false statements during the purchase of a firearm, engaging in the business without a firearms license, wire fraud, money laundering and conspiracy to commit Title 18 offenses.
According to a criminal complaint filed in Tennessee Middle District Court on Monday, the investigation began after a mass shooting at a party at 2515 W. 79th St. on March 26. Chicago Police Department officers recovered multiple firearms at that scene, and a subsequent investigation found five of those guns had been purchased at Federal Firearm Licensed dealers around Clarksville, Tennessee.
ATF investigators discovered that between September 2019 and April 2021, Adams, Brunson, Miller and others had purchased 91 firearms from these dealers in Tennessee and Kentucky, according to the complaint.
During an interview with members of the CPD and ATF last month, Adams allegedly admitted that he had been involved with these purchases, and that he believed Miller would take those guns to Chicago, where he would sell them on the street.
According to federal prosecutors, a federal search warrant was executed on April 28 at the home where Miller and Adams live in Clarksville. There, investigators allegedly found 49 empty firearms cases, many of which were matched to firearms recovered by the CPD “at the scene of recent shootings and homicides.”
Adams, Brunson and Miller were set to appear in court Tuesday before a Tennessee judge. If convicted, they each face up to 20 years in prison.