News and Press Releases

News and Press Releases

Minneapolis man indicted for possessing .40-caliber handgun, drugs

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
December 21, 2011


MINNEAPOLIS—Earlier today in federal court, a 37-year-old felon was indicted for
allegedly possessing a .40-caliber handgun as well as cocaine, crack cocaine, and marijuana.
Lamarco Trease Bell, of Minneapolis, was charged with one count of being a felon in
possession of a firearm, one count of possession with intent to distribute cocaine, one count of
possession with intent to distribute crack cocaine, and one count of possession with intent to
distribute marijuana.

The indictment alleges that on December 7, 2011, Bell possessed the gun, along with three
ounces of cocaine, one-half ounce of crack cocaine, and two pounds of marijuana. According to
a law enforcement affidavit filed in the case, authorities began investigating Bell in September
of 2011. During the execution of a state search warrant, officers found the weapon in a locked
bedroom in Bell’s residence. In addition, police discovered cocaine, crack cocaine, and
marijuana, along with $3,000 in cash.

Because he is a felon, Bell is prohibited under federal law from possessing firearms at any
time. In 2001, he was convicted in the District of Wyoming for possession with intent to
distribute marijuana.

If convicted in the current federal case, Bell faces a potential maximum penalty of 20 years
in prison on the cocaine and crack cocaine charges, ten years for illegally possessing a firearm, and five years on the marijuana charge. All sentences will be determined by a federal district
court judge.

This case is the result of an investigation by the United States Drug Enforcement
Administration, the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and the
Minneapolis Police Department. It is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Jeffrey S.
Paulsen.

Note, this case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (“PSN”), an initiative launched by the
U.S. Justice Department in 2001 to promote a multi-jurisdictional, comprehensive approach to
reducing gun crime in America. PSN provides resources to strengthen law enforcement and
crime prevention partnerships that work to make our communities safer.

An indictment is a determination by a grand jury that there is probable cause to believe that offenses have been committed by a defendant. A defendant, of course, is presumed innocent until he or she pleads guilty or is proven guilty at trial.

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