Tuesday, August 31, 2021

Man Sentenced to Six Years in Federal Prison for Illegally Possessing Stolen Gun in Chicago Park

 CHICAGO — A man has been sentenced to six years in federal prison for illegally possessing a stolen semi-automatic handgun in Douglas Park on Chicago’s West Side.

TERRY LEE illegally possessed the loaded gun in the 1200 block of South Farrar Drive on the evening of Aug. 12, 2020.  Chicago Police officers responding to a call of a person with a gun observed Lee sitting in the driver’s seat of a van.  As the officers approached him, Lee exited the van and ran toward a grassy area before being apprehended.  Officers discovered the firearm in the center console of the van.

Lee, 30, of Chicago, pleaded guilty earlier this year to a federal charge of illegal possession of a firearm.  He had previously been convicted of felonies in state court and was prohibited by federal law from possessing the gun.

U.S. District Judge John J. Tharp, Jr., imposed the prison sentence Aug. 26, 2021, after a hearing in federal court in Chicago.

The sentence was announced by John R. Lausch, Jr., United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois; Kristen de Tineo, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Field Division of the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives; and David Brown, Superintendent of the Chicago Police Department. 

“City residents often fear for their safety and for the safety of their loved ones while simply trying to go about their daily lives due to the possession and use of guns by people who are not permitted to have them,” Assistant U.S. Attorney Matthew Getter argued in the government’s sentencing memorandum.  “The law that defendant broke is one that is designed to prevent people who previously have broken serious laws from possessing these dangerous weapons.”

Holding illegal firearm possessors accountable through federal prosecution is a centerpiece of Project Safe Neighborhoods, the Department of Justice’s violent crime reduction strategy.  In the Northern District of Illinois, U.S. Attorney Lausch and law enforcement partners have deployed the PSN program to attack a broad range of violent crime issues facing the district, particularly firearm offenses.

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