Florida man going to prison after he used a semiautomatic assault rifle in carjackings

An Orlando man who pleaded guilty to using a semiautomatic rifle during a carjacking spree was sentenced to prison, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Cedrick A. Gant, 28, was holding a loaded semiautomatic rifle when he went up to a person in the driveway of their Eustis home on Sept. 25, 2017, and demanded their keys and wallet, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office, citing court documents. However, he was not successful in driving away.

The Orlando Sentinel reported Gant failed to start the vehicle, which had a push-button start. Instead, he got into a waiting car.

But about an hour later, Gant tried again, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

Gant held the same assault rifle when he went up to another person getting out of their vehicle at their Apopka home and demanded the keys.

The victim threw their keys to he ground and, fearing for their life, ran and called 911.

Gant drove off in the vehicle and led law enforcement officers on a pursuit.

The chase went on for several miles as Gant sped along and drove in the wrong direction for a portion of the chase until officers stopped the vehicle, according to WFTV.

When officers got him to stop the vehicle, he took off on foot into a nearby home, where he demanded a change of clothes and to use the phone.

He was later found hiding in the woods behind the home.

Gant was sentenced to 23 years in federal prison, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office. He pleaded guilty on June 28, 2018.

Sara Nealeigh covers what’s happening in the cities of Bradenton and Palmetto, Florida for the Bradenton Herald. She previously covered breaking news for the Herald after moving to Florida from Ohio in 2016.