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Press Release

Shooting Gun Into The Air Gets Convicted Felon 20 Years In Prison

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Eastern District of Pennsylvania

PHILADELPHIA – Francis Aponte, 47, of Philadelphia, was sentenced today to 20 years in prison for possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. On June 17, 2012, Aponte was standing on the sidewalk near Indiana Avenue and 4th Street when two Philadelphia Police Officers spotted him shooting a gun into the air. The officers approached and saw Aponte throw the handgun – a .380 caliber Indian Arms semi-automatic – to the ground.  Aponte was arrested and charged as a convicted felon in possession of a firearm.  A federal jury found him guilty on December 5, 2013.  Of the 20 year term, 15 years is mandatory.  In addition to the prison term, U.S. District Court Judge Paul S. Diamond ordered five years of supervised release and a $100 special assessment.

The case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and the Philadelphia Police Department.  It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Jose R. Arteaga.

Suite 1250, 615 Chestnut Street, Philadelphia, PA 19106
PATTY HARTMAN, Media Contact, 215-861-8525

Updated December 15, 2014