Man gets 7 years in prison after shooting at family member on Cobb streets

A man who chased a family member through Cobb County while firing multiple shots at her, hitting an unoccupied child’s car seat and another driver’s car, was sentenced to seven years in prison earlier this month, federal officials said.

Rico Laprince Southall, 34, who was previously convicted on a felony drug charge, pleaded guilty in April to one federal count of possession of a firearm after the wild chase and shooting, U.S. Attorney for the Northern District of Georgia Ryan K. Buchanan said in a news release. Southall faces additional charges in Cobb.

The local and federal charges against Southall stem from a car chase on public roads in Cobb in April 2021, Buchanan said. Southall fired multiple shots while he chased a family member as she drove into Powder Springs. Numerous bullets hit the woman’s car, and one struck an infant safety seat that was empty at the time. The gunfire also hit another driver’s car, Buchanan said.

No one was injured during the incident.

Southall was arrested with a Glock 22 pistol with an extended magazine and a Taurus Model 513 revolver that had previously been reported stolen out of Pennsylvania, court records show. The stolen gun led the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives to adopt the case for federal prosecution.

“Southall’s illegal possession and dangerous use of these weapons are serious crimes that show how gun violence is a risk to all of us,” Buchanan said. “Keeping firearms out of the hands of convicted felons and individuals with violent criminal histories is essential to protecting the citizens of the district and reducing gun violence. Fortunately, no one was injured or killed because of this defendant’s egregious disregard for the safety of our community.”

“Through the continued work of seizing illegal guns and removing very violent offenders from our streets, far fewer of our Cobb County community members are shot, killed and maimed,” Cobb police Chief Stuart VanHoozer said.