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Press Release

Hawthorne Man With History Of Mental Illness Indicted On Gun Charges

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Middle District of Florida

Tampa, Florida – Acting United States Attorney A. Lee Bentley, III announces the arrest and charging of David Harris Dunaway (58, Hawthorne) for being an individual adjudicated as mentally defective and having been committed to a mental institution, in possession of a firearm and ammunition. If convicted, Dunaway faces a maximum penalty of ten years in federal prison.

Dunaway was indicted on December 18, 2013.

According to the indictment, on or about October 9, 2013, Dunaway knowingly possessed a Smith & Wesson .40 caliber semi-automatic pistol and 50 rounds of ammunition. In 1992, he was found not guilty of homicide, by reason of insanity. Subsequently, Dunaway was involuntarily committed to a mental institution for five years. When arrested, in Alachua County, Florida, Dunaway had 37 guns and more than 1,000 rounds of ammunition in his vehicle.

An indictment is merely a formal charge that a defendant has committed a violation of the federal criminal laws, and every defendant is presumed innocent unless, and until, proven guilty.

This case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF). It will be prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Carlton C. Gammons.

This is another case prosecuted as a part of the Department of Justice’s “Project Safe Neighborhoods” program - a nationwide, gun-violence reduction strategy.  Acting United States Attorney A. Lee Bentley, III, along with Julie Leon, Special Agent in Charge, ATF, is coordinating the Project Safe Neighborhoods effort here in the Middle District of Florida in cooperation with federal, state, and local law enforcement officials.

It is also a part of ATF’s Frontline strategy to reduce violent crime and improve the quality of life in communities where law enforcement efforts are focused.

Updated January 26, 2015