News and Press Releases

Socorro Man Sentenced to 63 Months in Federal
Prison for Unlawful Possession of a Firearm

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
April 18, 2013

ALBUQUERQUE – Christopher Heath, 29, of Socorro, N.M., was sentenced yesterday afternoon to 63 months in federal prison followed by three years of supervised release for being a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition.  Heath’s sentence was announced by U.S. Attorney Kenneth J. Gonzales, Thomas G. Atteberry, Special Agent in Charge of the Phoenix Division of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, and Chief George Van Winkle of the Socorro Police Department.

Heath was arrested in July 2012, on an indictment charging him with being a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition.  The indictment alleged that Heath unlawfully possessed a firearm in Socorro County, N.M., on April 2, 2012.  According to the indictment, at that time, Heath was prohibited from possessing firearms and ammunition because he previously had been convicted of possession of a controlled substance and aggravated assault upon a peace officer in the Seventh Judicial District Court for the State of New Mexico. 

Court records reflect that Heath was arrested based on investigation conducted by officers of the Socorro Police Department when they executed a search warrant at his residence.  They also reveal that in addition to the two convictions identified in the indictment, Heath also has additional felony convictions for possession of a controlled substance and for being a felon in possession of a firearm.

In Dec. 2012, Heath pled guilty to the indictment and admitted possessing a 12 gauge shotgun and ammunition on April 2, 2012 in Socorro County.

The case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Socorro Police Department, with assistance from the District Attorney’s Office for the Seventh Judicial District of the State of New Mexico.  It was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Walsh.


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