McNairy Co. man accused of selling moonshine on Craigslist

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McNAIRY COUNTY, Tenn. — There is new information about an alleged McNairy County moonshine operation that has landed a convicted sex offender back behind bars. The sheriff’s office said it started getting complaints over the holidays about Travis Gillespie’s online ads. A house in Stantonville is where Gillespie is accused of running his illegal moonshine business. Investigators said he boldly advertised online with ads on Facebook and Craigslist. “To have somebody who blatantly goes on Facebook or on Craigslist and tries to sell it is extremely unusual,” McNairy County Sheriff Guy Buck said. Buck said deputies arrested Gillespie last weekend after an undercover officer bought six gallons of the homemade booze. “The negotiations for the buy were for $360 for the six gallons, which would’ve been $60 a gallon, which is a little bit cheap,” Buck said. When asked about typical street value, Buck said, “Word on the street would say that a good gallon of moonshine is generally worth about $100.” Buck said tracking down Gillespie was not too difficult because his phone number was included in his ads. “When we looked into him, we found out that one, he was a convicted felon, and two, he was on the state sex offender registry,” Buck said. Gillespie is also charged with failing to register as a sex offender and having a gun as a convicted felon. Neighbors would not speak on camera but told WBBJ 7 Eyewitness News they are glad he got caught. “I think it’s kind of crazy to put something illegal on Craigslist or Facebook or any kind of social media so they know where you’re at and what you’re doing,” Selmer resident Brandon Maxedon said. Buck said while searching Gillespie’s house they found several more gallons of moonshine and materials to make more. The state Alcohol Beverage Commission confiscated it all. Gillespie is free on a $15,000 bond. State records show in 2013 he was convicted of sexual exploitation of a minor. He is scheduled to be back in court Feb. 12 for a preliminary hearing.

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