News and Press Releases

Felon Gets 17 Years in Federal PrisonFor Possessing Firearm

May 5, 2004

Reno, Nev. -  A man convicted by a federal jury last year of being a felon in possession of a firearm, was sentenced today to 211 months in prison, which includes a mandatory minimum term of imprisonment of 15 years, announced Daniel G. Bogden, United States Attorney for the District of Nevada.

DAVID DOUGLAS AVERY, age 39, of Reno, was arrested on June 10, 2002, by Sparks Police Department Officers after Western Village Inn & Casino security personnel observed him walking through the casino parking lot looking in vehicle windows and pulling on the vehicle door handles. Sparks Police Department Officers contacted AVERY, and observed that he appeared to be nervous and holding onto his "fanny pack." AVERY provided the officers consent to search the "fanny pack," in which they found a loaded semiautomatic pistol, a knife, two bags of methamphetamine, and other drug paraphernalia, including 20 plastic bags, a bent spoon, and a pipe with drug residue.

Officers later determined through a records check that the defendant was DAVID DOUGLAS AVERY, a felon with multiple prior convictions. Under federal law, it is unlawful for any person who has been convicted in any court of a crime punishable by imprisonment for a term exceeding one year to possess a firearm that has been shipped in interstate commerce.

AVERY was indicted by a Federal Grand Jury in Reno on June 26, 2002, on one count of Felon in Possession of a Firearm. He was convicted of the charge on July 30, 2003, following a two-day jury trial.

The Court determined at sentencing today, that under federal firearm statutes, AVERY was an "Armed Career Criminal" because he had previously been convicted of at least three violent felony offenses, which included three robberies and one burglary. This finding required that AVERY be sentenced to 15 years minimum in prison. AVERY must also serve five years of supervised release following his release from prison.

The case was investigated by officers with the Sparks Police Department and Special Agents with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Robert Don Gifford.

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