MAXTON — A Maxton man who was shot and killed early Wednesday during a home invasion had been released from federal prison last February after serving nearly six years for drug trafficking.
Derrick Ray Chavis, 27, of Contour Lane in Maxton, was shot during a struggle with two other men while trying to force his way into a home at 21 Nina Drive on Wednesday during an apparent robbery, according to the Sheriff’s Office.
Chavis was sentenced in June 2005 to nine years and six months in prison after pleading guilty to one count of conspiracy to distribute and possess with intent to distribute more than 50 kilograms of cocaine and more than 50 grams of crack cocaine.
According to the Federal Bureau of Prisons, Chavis was released from the Butner Federal Correctional Complex in Granville County in February 2011.
A spokesman for the bureau said Chavis’ sentence was reduced in late 2007 from 101 months to 90 months, and that he was serving five years of probation.
Chavis was one of five men sentenced following a two-year investigation of a “violent narcotics trafficking organization” in the Maxton area by police, the State Bureau of Investigation and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, according to previous reports.
The operation, called Project Eclipse, began in March 2003 and resulted in the seizure of five kilos of cocaine, 50 firearms and $25,000 in cash.
Chavis was one of two men who tried to force their way into the home of Cheryl Maynor early Wednesday.
Sheriff’s Maj. Howard Branch said Maynor’s boyfriend, Jesse Fulmer, apparently knew the man Chavis was with and allowed him into the single-wide mobile home, but Chavis, armed with a “long gun,” forced his way in.
Branch said that a struggle ensued, during which shots were fired and Chavis was struck. Deputies found him dead on the front porch of the home.
The second man fled on foot but was later found, according to Lt. Reggle Strickland. Bobby Wallace, 41, of Maxton, was questioned and released Wednesday, he said.
The case is still under investigation.