Albequerque – Earlier today, a federal judge sentenced Dustin Dean, to a 15-year-term of imprisonment for being an armed career criminal in possession of firearms. Dean, 35, of Grants, N.M., will be on supervised release for three years after completing his prison sentence.
U.S. Attorney Kenneth J. Gonzales said that Dean represents the type of target that is the focus of a federal anti-violence initiative that targets "the worst of the worst" offenders for federal prosecution under the federal firearms and narcotics laws. Under the initiative, a state-wide, multi-agency effort denominated as the New Mexico Federal Gang Task Force, the U.S. Attorney's Office and federal law enforcement agencies work with New Mexico's District Attorneys and state, local and tribal law enforcement agencies to target violent or repeat offenders for federal prosecution with the goal of removing repeat offenders from our communities for as long as possible.
Court records reflect that Dean initially was charged in a criminal complaint on May 17, 2011, and subsequently charged in an indictment on July 24, 2011, with felon in possession of a firearms and ammunition. According to the indictment, Dean unlawfully possessed a firearm and ammunition in Cibola County, N.M., on May 3, 2011. At the time, Dean was prohibited from possessing firearms and ammunition because he previously had been convicted of numerous felony offenses, including aggravated battery, residential burglary, and attempted armed robbery in the 13th Judicial District Court for the State of New Mexico, and false imprisonment and breaking and entering in the 2nd Judicial District Court for the State of New Mexico. Dean also previously was convicted of being a felon in possession in the U.S. District Court for the District of New Mexico.
In December 2011, Dean was transferred from state custody to answer to the federal charges in this case, and has been in federal custody since that time. On April 25, 2012, Dean entered a guilty plea to the indictment and admitted that on May 3, 2011, he had a loaded Colt Mustang model .380 caliber pistol in a cell phone holster strapped to his ankle when he was arrested by law enforcement pursuant to an arrest warrant. Dean also admitted to being in possession of a loaded Browning 9mm Luger caliber pistol.
The case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives, the New Mexico State Police and the Cibola County Sheriff's Office, and was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney David W. Walsh.