The U.S. Attorney's Office filed 176 firearms indictments last year
The United States Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Ohio filed 176 illegal firearms indictments last year as part of Project Safe Neighborhood (PSN), U.S. Attorney Steven M. Dettelbach announced.
“This office places a high priority on keeping firearms out of the hands of those who are forbidden by law from obtaining them,” Dettelbach said. “Whether it is a person using a gun to commit a violent crime, a felon illegally obtaining a firearm or a straw purchaser trying to circumvent the law, we will aggressively pursue those who would violate our nation’s firearms laws.”
“Ensuring public safety and pursuing individuals who illegally use and possess firearms in furtherance of their activities is a top priority of the ATF,” said ATF Special Agent in Charge Robin Shoemaker, Columbus Field Division. “We will continue to perfect criminal cases against these types of individuals and hold them accountable for their actions.”
Broken down by geography in the district, the most indictments filed came out of the Cleveland office, with 86. That was followed by the Toledo office (31), Akron office (30) and Youngstown office (29).
There were 146 defendants sentenced last year for firearms crimes and the average sentence was more than six years in prison (73.9 months).
Details of selected cases:
U.S. v. Stafford
Akeem Stafford, 25, of Elyria, was sentenced last year to more than 20 years in prison for being a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition. Stafford fired several rounds from a .45-caliber pistol into a crowd of people outside Uncle Vic’s nightclub in Elyria.
U.S. v. Katrenick
David Katrenick was sentenced to more than nine years in prison in June after pleading guilty to two counts of being a felon in possession of a firearm. Katrenick owned and operated Lazy Dave’s Tattoo Shop on Lorain Road in North Olmsted. He possessed three rifles, two shotguns and ammunition, despite previous convictions for rape, aggravated assault, burglary and other crimes.
U.S. v. Atwal
Amarjit S. Atwal, 65, of Maple Heights, was indicted last month on charges of using a false identity to purchase a firearm. Atwal used the identity of another person to purchase a Glock 9 mm and Smith and Wesson .357-caliber revolver and intentionally failed to disclose his true name and identity when attempting to purchase firearms at the Berea Gun Show.
U.S. v. Gilbert and Moses
Tyrone Gilbert and Rodney Moses, both of Youngstown, were charged with being felons in possession of firearms and ammunition in June as part of a broader investigation into a criminal enterprise that dealt heroin in the Youngstown area.
U.S. v. Taylor
Isiah Taylor III, of Youngstown, was sentenced to seven years in prison last year after being convicted of brandishing a firearm during a crime. That sentence is being served concurrent to a sentence of more than 10 years related to more than 40 armed robberies he committed in Akron, Warren, Boardman, Alliance, Youngstown and other locations.
Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN) is a nationwide commitment to reduce gun and gang crime in America by networking existing local programs that target gun and gun crime and providing these programs with additional tools necessary to be successful. Since its inception in 2001, approximately $2 billion has been committed to this initiative. This funding is being used to hire new federal and state prosecutors, support investigators, provide training, distribute gun lock safety kits, deter juvenile gun crime, and develop and promote community outreach efforts as well as to support other gun and gang violence reduction strategies.
As a point of reference, PSN prosecution statistics for calendar year 2002 through 2011 are as follows:
2002: 117 indictments
2003: 155 indictments
2004: 184 indictments
2005: 220 indictments
2006: 187 indictments
2007: 191 indictments
2008: 157 indictments
2009: 156 indictments
2010: 166 indictments
2011: 218 indictments
2012: 176 indictments