Metro-East News

Convicted murderer sentenced to nearly four years for possessing firearms

William Berry - Fotolia

A judge sentenced a 49-year-old Ellis Grove man on Thursday to nearly four years in prison for possessing firearms — a rifle and sawed-off shotgun — as a felon.

In a release, Donald Boyce, the U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Illinois, stated Randolph County Sheriff’s Office deputies arrested Jeffrey Robert Pautler on May 15, 2016, after finding him in his home “in an agitated state, with bloodied hands and jeans.”

The release stated Pautler threatened deputies with a shovel before calming down and being taken into custody. At the time of the incident, Pautler was on parole for a 1991 second-degree murder conviction in Cape Girardeau County, Mo.

He had been released from prison Oct. 22, 2014.

Pautler’s live-in girlfriend consented to a search of the home after Pauntler was taken into custody, and deputies found the rifle and sawed-off shotgun.

Pautler pleaded guilty Oct. 6, 2016, and was sentenced in the U.S. District Court in Benton, Ill.

“(Pautler) claimed that he used the rifle to shoot coyotes, and he said that he had not fired the shotgun,” the release stated. “He also admitted that he was a daily user of marijuana, which he claimed relieved pain.”

He will also serve three years of supervised release and pay $3,200 in fines.