News and Press Releases

Snohomish County Men Burgle Gun Store, Sell and Trade Firearms for Drugs

April 24, 2008

Three Snohomish County men were sentenced today in U.S. District Court in Seattle in connection with the Christmas Eve 2006, burglary of Sky Valley Traders in Monroe, Washington. On December 24, 2006, DUANE L. MILLER, 26, of Monroe, and STEPHEN A. LARSON, 39, of Monroe, broke into Sky Valley Gun and Tackle, d/b/a Sky Valley Traders and stole eleven firearms. Following the burglary they took the guns to the Woodinville residence of MICHAEL J. KEYES, 19, and the three of them sold or traded the guns to others. Some of the guns have been recovered.

KEYES pleaded guilty January 25, 2008, to Conspiracy and Theft of Firearms from a Federal Firearms Licensee. KEYES already has a criminal history that includes crimes of violence, property crimes and a firearms crime. At sentencing U.S. District Judge Marsha J. Pechman said in twenty years on the bench she had never seen a 19-year-old with such an extensive criminal history. In January 2007, KEYES was arrested after repeatedly ramming a police cruiser with his car. In October 2007, KEYES was convicted of Second Degree Assault in King County Superior Court for an attack on another inmate in the King County Jail. He was sentenced in that case to a 57-month prison term. Judge Pechman ordered that KEYES serve a 77 month federal prison sentence on the gun charges following his 57 month state prison term.

LARSON pleaded guilty on January 24, 2008, to Conspiracy and Theft of Firearms from a Federal Firearms Licensee. LARSON too has previous violent felony conviction as well as prior misdemeanor convictions involving violence, drugs, and alcohol. Judge Pechman sentenced LARSON to 75 months in prison and three years of supervised release. Judge Pechman recommended drug treatment for LARSON saying, “Your crimes show me that you are dangerous when you are high. You have a huge domestic violence history.”

On January 28, 2008, MILLER pleaded guilty to Conspiracy and Theft of Firearms from a Federal Firearms Licensee. MILLER is already doing a 17 month state prison term for possessing one of the stolen firearms. Judge Marsha J. Pechman ordered that MILLER serve an additional 20 months in federal prison for a total custody term of 37 months. All three men were ordered by Judge Pechman to make restitution to Sky Valley Traders for the $4,048 value of the firearms.

In asking for significant sentences for the conspirators, Special Assistant United States Attorney Adam Cornell pointed out that the guns put the community at risk. “The effects of their deliberate and dangerous conduct continues to ripple throughout our community by way of the stolen guns that still have not been recovered.”

The case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives (ATF) and the Monroe Police Department.

The case is being prosecuted by Special Assistant United States Attorney Adam Cornell and Assistant U.S. Attorney Bruce Miyake. Mr. Cornell is a Snohomish County Deputy Prosecutor specially designated to handle gun and drug cases in federal court.

For additional information please contact Emily Langlie, Public Affairs Officer for the United States Attorney’s Office, at (206) 553-4110.

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