Jeremy Meeks, whose handsome mugshot went viral, sentenced to prison
Jeremy Meeks’ mugshot inspired fundraising efforts and Facebook groups after his piercing eyes and defiant glare sent the Internet into a frenzy last year.
But all the viral furor and slack-jawed looks drawn by Meeks’ mug did little to change the felon’s saga. U.S. District Judge Troy Nunley sentenced the 30-year-old to two years in prison on Thursday, court records show.
Meeks was arrested on weapons charges last June when he was stopped by Stockton police after leaving a home where a search warrant was being executed by the FBI and the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives, according to the San Joaquin County district attorney’s office.
Police found a semi-automatic handgun and two extended magazines for the weapon before arresting Meeks and 23-year-old Terry Bailey. The district attorney’s office accused both men of being members of the Northside Gangster Crips as well.
Meeks’ case was transferred to federal court in Sacramento last year. He was ordered to be incarcerated at a facility near Stockton, and will also have to complete the Federal Bureau of Prisons Substance Abuse Treatment program, according to court records.
Meeks’ became an Internet favorite after the Stockton Police Department posted his mugshot on its Facebook page last year. Women sent messages promising to help with his bail, which was set at $1 million, and reports surfaced that he had been offered a modeling contract weeks after his arrest.
Meeks broke the hearts of countless Facebook users when he announced that he was married and that his wife was “livid” about all the attention. In various interviews with local television stations, Meeks tried to downplay the gravity of the charges, telling reporters he was not a “hardened criminal.”
But the June arrest was not Meeks’ first brush with law enforcement. He previously served two years in state prison for a grand theft auto conviction in Solano County. He also sports a teardrop tattoo on his cheekbone for “doing some things in his past he is not proud of,” he told reporters last year.
The original photo of Meeks garnered more than 50,000 likes on the Stockton Police Department’s Facebook page. Another community page, which is home to Photoshopped images of Meeks as comic book heroes including Captain America and Wolverine, had roughly 234,000 supporters by Friday.
Officer Joseph Silva, public information officer for the Stockton Police Department, declined to comment directly on the sentencing or Meeks’ 15 minutes of fame.
“The Police Department is glad this criminal case has come to its conclusion,” Silva said.
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