former chugiak man sentenced to federal prison for illegal possession of machine gun
Anchorage, Alaska – United States Attorney Karen L. Loeffler announced today that a former Chugiak man was sentenced in federal court in Anchorage to two years in federal prison, to be followed by three years of supervised release, and a fine of $7,500 for his conviction of illegal possession of a machine gun.
On July 1, 2011, Matthew Wayne Henry, 52, former resident of Chugiak, Alaska, was sentenced by Senior United States District Judge H. Russel Holland.
Henry was convicted by a federal jury on April 13, 2011. The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Yvonne Lamoureux and Joseph Bottini. Evidence at the trial established that on the night of October 30, 2009, Henry fired a machine gun from the front door of his home in a residential Chugiak neighborhood. The weapon was a machine gun that Henry had made himself by modifying a .308-caliber rifle. Henry testified at trial, and his sentence was enhanced as a result of the court finding that he had testified falsely in an attempt to obstruct justice.
Prior to imposing sentence, Judge Holland noted that the offense involved firing a dangerous weapon in a residential area by someone who was under the influence of alcohol and prescription medication. The court also noted that Henry's actions scared Henry's neighbors and that the combination of a machine gun, alcohol, and prescription medication created a dangerous situation. The court also noted that Henry had been involved in a confrontation with Anchorage Police Department officers in 2006, when he was intoxicated and had a loaded firearm on his person.
Ms. Loeffler commended the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and Anchorage Police Department for the investigation leading to the successful prosecution of Henry. Henry was prosecuted under the Project Safe Neighborhood program, a nationwide commitment to reducing firearm and gang crime in America.