Bradley Robert Cowan Pleads Guilty in U.S. Federal Cour
Bill Mercer, United States Attorney for the District of Montana, announced today that during a federal court session in Billings on August 19, 2009, before Senior U.S. District Judge Jack D. Shanstrom, BRADLEY ROBERT COWAN, a 30-year-old resident of Billings, pled guilty to being a felon-in-possession of a firearm. Sentencing is set for November 18, 2009. He is currently released on special conditions.
In an Offer of Proof filed by Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Ed Zink, the government stated it would have proved at trial the following:
On May 14, 2008, COWAN was sentenced for two counts of felony drug distribution. The court imposed a ten year commitment to the Montana Department of Corrections, with all time suspended. As a condition of his probation, the court imposed several conditions on COWAN, including that he not possess firearms.
On November 12, 2008, a deputy with the Yellowstone County Sheriff's Office observed COWAN'S vehicle at a local bar. The deputy was aware of COWAN'S felony history and confirmed with a state probation officer that COWAN had a restricted driving privilege and was not to be at bars. The probation officer asked the deputy to arrest COWAN for probation violations. When the deputy returned to the bar, he observed COWAN driving away at a high rate of speed. When the deputy tried to pull him over, a high-speed pursuit followed. COWAN turned down a dead-end road and drove down it at a high rate of speed, resulting in a violent crash. When the deputy arrived at the crash site to help COWAN, he located a firearm in the debris field.
The firearm was identified as a Winchester 61-2 .22 rifle. COWAN later admitted to possession of the rifle.
COWAN faces possible penalties of 10 years in prison, a $250,000 fine and 3 years supervised release.
The investigation was a cooperative effort between the Yellowstone County Sheriff's Office and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
A copy of the Offer of Proof can be obtained by contacting Sally Frank at (406) 247-4638.