News and Press Releases

Possession of Sawed off Shotguns Earns Felon Ten Years in Prison

February3, 2012

Tampa, Florida - U.S. Attorney Robert E. O'Neill announces that U.S. District Judge Susan Bucklew yesterday sentenced Dwain Denorris Wallace, III (40, Tampa) to 10 years in federal prison, followed by 3 years of supervised release, for being a felon in possession of two short-barreled shotguns. The court also ordered Wallace to forfeit both guns and the ammunition.

On October 4, 2011, a federal jury found Wallace guilty. According to testimony and evidence presented in court, on the night of March 25, 2011, Wallace was stalking his ex-girlfriend and had taken her car from her and refused to return it. At approximately 8:40 p.m. that night, Wallace found her at a relative’s residence and began to argue with her. During the argument, Wallace pointed a loaded, 12-gauge Winchester sawed-off shotgun at her. Upon seeing the gun, two 911 calls were made to the Tampa Police Department (TPD). Wallace fled the scene before officers arrived. Within the hour, Wallace again found his ex-girlfriend. She and her daughter were setting up for a party inside a local club. Wallace confronted his ex-girlfriend inside the club. A family member called 911.

Wallace attempted to leave the scene as the police arrived, and a pursuit ensued. He was apprehended in the vicinity of the club. Officers recovered a Winchester sawed-off shotgun nearby, which was loaded with three rounds of 12-gauge ammunition. Upon searching the vehicle, officers found an extremely short sawed-off Ithaca 20-gauge shotgun with a spent shell in the chamber, three more rounds of 12-gauge ammunition in a duffel bag on the passenger seat, and a baseball bat on the floor of the backseat.
Prior to March 2011, Wallace had been convicted of five state felonies, including attempted second degree murder for shooting his uncle.

This case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Tampa Police Department. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Thomas N. Palermo.

It is another case prosecuted as a part of the Department of Justice’s “Project Safe Neighborhoods” program - a nationwide, gun-violence reduction strategy led by ATF. United States Attorney Robert E. O’Neill, along with Virginia O’Brien, Special Agent in Charge, ATF, is coordinating the Project Safe Neighborhoods effort here in the Middle District of Florida in cooperation with federal, state, and local law enforcement officials.









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