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Press Release

Six-Time Convicted Felon Who Shot Two People Outside San Bernardino Bar Sentenced to More Than 10 Years in Prison

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Central District of California

LOS ANGELES – A San Bernardino County man and six-time convicted felon who shot two people outside a San Bernardino sports bar was sentenced today to 125 months in federal prison for illegally possessing ammunition.

Rafeal Yanni, 31, a.k.a. “Green Eyes,” of Colton, was sentenced by United States District Judge Fernando M. Olguin.

Yanni pleaded guilty on April 11 to one count of being a felon in possession of ammunition.

“This defendant’s criminal conduct resulted in two wounded and traumatized victims, but he has now earned a lengthy stay in federal prison,” said United States Attorney Martin Estrada. “Violent gun crime is a menace to our community and my office will continue to vigorously prosecute these kinds of cases. Those who commit gun crimes should be aware that the federal government will not hesitate to take action.”

According to court documents, in September 2023, Yanni was seen at a San Bernardino sports bar. As Yanni was leaving the bar, he was captured in surveillance cameras racking the slide of a firearm.  When Yanni left the restaurant, he got into a fight in the parking lot with Victim 1. Yanni pulled out the firearm, which lacked a serial number (commonly called a “ghost gun”) and fired three shots at short range at Victim 1, who collapsed. After hearing gunshots and observing Victim 1 on the ground, Victim 2 ran to help Victim 1. Yanni then shot Victim 2 two times at short range as well.

Yanni fled the scene and was arrested two days later. Law enforcement found a loaded ghost gun inside a vehicle that he had just been in. Ballistics tests linked the seized firearm to the shootings.

Yanni is not permitted to possess ammunition because of six felony convictions on his record, including two convictions in Sacramento County Superior Court in 2021 for assault, one conviction for possession of a firearm by a felon in 2019 in San Bernardino County Superior Court, and unlawful taking of a vehicle in 2013 in San Bernardino County Superior Court.

Operation Safe Cities establishes strategic enforcement priorities with an emphasis on prosecuting the most significant drivers of violent crime. Across this region, the most damaging and horrific crimes are committed by a relatively small number of particularly violent individuals. This strategic enforcement approach is expected to increase the number of arrests, prosecutions and convictions of recidivists engaged in the most dangerous conduct. It is designed to improve public safety across the region by targeting crimes involving illicit guns, prohibited persons possessing firearms, or robbery crews that cause havoc and extensive losses to retail establishments.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the Colton Police Department, and the San Bernardino Police Department investigated this matter.

Assistant United States Attorney Kelsey A. Stimson of the General Crimes Section prosecuted this case.


Ciaran McEvoy
Public Information Officer
(213) 894-4465

Updated June 27, 2024

Firearms Offenses
Violent Crime
Press Release Number: 24-152