News and Press Releases


June 17, 2011

An East Louis man was sentenced to 46 months in federal prison on June 17, 2011, the United States Attorney for the Southern District of Illinois, Stephen R. Wigginton, announced today. John W. McGaskey, Jr., 44, of East St. Louis, Ill.-, received a sentence of 46 months’ imprisonment for Felon In Possession of a Firearm. Following release from imprisonment, McGaskey will serve 3 years’ of supervised release. McGaskey was also ordered to pay a $200 fine and a special assessment of $100.

McGaskey previously plead guilty to the charges on March 10, 2011.

“It is not only a priority of Attorney General Holder, but a personal priority of mine to combat illegal use of weapons in the Southern District of Illinois. No person should illegally possess a gun!” stated United States Attorney Wigginton.

In this case, while on patrol, officers had parked in the back parking lot of a convenience store located in Washington Park, Ill.-, that McGaskey had seen them and turned away. Officers then observed that McGaskey had dropped a handgun from his left hand and kicked it under a vehicle. During the arrest and booking process, it was discovered that McGaskey had a warrant out for a parole violation.

The case resulted from the efforts of the WAVE (Working Against Violent Elements) Task Force, which focuses its efforts on combating violent crime in East St. Louis, Washington Park, and surrounding communities. WAVE was formed in November, 2009, and is a collaboration of law enforcement officers from the Illinois State Police, the Metropolitan Enforcement Group of Southwestern Illinois (MEGSI), the St. Clair County Sheriff’s Department, the East St. Louis Police Department, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, and the United States Marshals Service. The WAVE Task Force receives financial support through the Department of Justice’s Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN) initiative, a nationwide federal program which endeavors to address gun-related violence.

The investigation was conducted by the Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives and the Metropolitan Enforcement Group of Southwestern Illinois. The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Deirdre A. Durborow.



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