Cedar Rapids man charged in federal court with threatening man with gun, forcing him to transfer control of website

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CEDAR RAPIDS — A 43-year-old man, initially charged in state court for a burglary turned kidnapping that resulted in him and the alleged victim being shot, is now facing charges in federal court.

Sherman Hopkins Jr. of Cedar Rapids, pleaded not guilty Friday in U.S. District Court to one count each of possession of a firearm by a felon; interference and attempted interference with commerce by threats and violence; kidnapping; and using, carrying, brandishing and discharging a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence and possessing a firearm in furtherance of a crime.

U.S. District Magistrate Kelly Mahoney denied bond for Hopkins during a detention and preliminary hearing Friday. Hopkins will remain in jail pending his Oct. 23 trial.

Criminal complaints from federal and state courts show Hopkins, armed with a 9 mm pistol, broke into the home of Ethan Deyo, 424 Fairway Terrace SE, on June 21. Deyo retreated to a bedroom but Hopkins followed him and forced entry into the room, court records show. He then confined and threatened Deyo with the handgun, forcing him to log onto his computer and transfer an internet domain name, “doitforstate.com,” to a third party, according to court records.

During the incident, Deyo grabbed Hopkins’ gun and as they struggled, the gun discharged, striking Deyo in the right leg, the Linn County District Court complaint shows. Deyo then grabbed the gun and shot Hopkins twice to stop the attack, according to court records. Deyo called police and both men were taken to a hospital for medical treatment.

In 2007, Hopkins was convicted of perjury in federal court and cannot lawfully own or be in possession of a handgun, according to the complaint.

l Comments: (319) 398-8318; trish.mehaffey@thegazette.com

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