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News Release
U.S. Department of Justice
Peter F. Neronha
United States Attorney
District of Rhode Island

May 4, 2012

Massachusetts Man Sentenced to 15 Years in Federal Prison on Firearm Charge


PROVIDENCE, R.I. – Jonathan Campbell, 41, formerly of Ashland, Mass., was sentenced in U.S. District Court in Providence today to 180 months in federal prison for being a felon in possession of a firearm, announced United States Attorney Peter F. Neronha and Providence Police Chief Colonel Hugh T. Clements, Jr.  Campbell, an armed career criminal, who was previously convicted on three occasions in Massachusetts state courts of committing violent felonies, pleaded guilty in federal court in Providence on December 15, 2011, to one count of felon in possession of a firearm.

At sentencing, Campbell was also sentenced by U.S. District Court Judge William E. Smith to serve three years supervised release following his term of imprisonment. 

According to information presented to the court, on May 3, 2007, Providence Police Gun Task Force officers received a tip that a black Chevy Tahoe with Massachusetts plates and two men inside would be coming into the city, and that there was a gun inside the vehicle. The officers established a surveillance of a highway exit ramp the driver was expected to use and spotted the vehicle exiting Rte 95 at about 10:00pm.

The officers followed the vehicle and stopped it for a routine traffic violation after the driver failed to signal a turn. As police approached the vehicle, officers noticed that the driver was making movements toward the center console as if he was attempting to conceal an object. When questioned by the officers about the possibility of a firearm being in the vehicle, the driver, Jonathan Campbell, agreed to allow the officers to search the vehicle. The driver and a passenger were removed from the vehicle and a search of the console by the officers revealed a loaded .38 revolver stuffed inside of a sock.

According to information presented to the court, Campbell was detained and transported to the police station where he told police that he had come to Rhode Island from Massachusetts to deliver the firearm to a friend who called him and requested that he bring it to him. Campbell admitted that the gun was his and that he had purchased it for $300 in North Carolina four months earlier. Campbell has been detained since his arrest.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Zechariah Chafee.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives assisted Providence Police in the investigation of this matter.



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