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Press Release

Hazelton Man Indicted For Stealing Firearms From Local Sporting Goods Store

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

SCRANTON - The United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania announced today that a Hazelton man has been indicted by a federal grand jury in Scranton on conspiracy and firearm offenses.

According to United States Attorney Peter Smith, the indictment charges Stefan Rease, age 19, with stealing firearms from Bob’s Sporting Goods, a federally licensed firearms dealer in Hazleton, in December 2015. 

The charges stem from a joint investigation between the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) and the Hazelton Police Department which alleges that the defendant and co-conspirators broke into the establishment and stole four firearms.

The investigation was conducted by the ATF, working in conjunction with the Hazelton Police Department. Prosecution is assigned to Assistant United States Attorney Evan Gotlob.

This case was brought as part of the Violent Crime Reduction Partnership (“VRCP”), a district wide initiative to combat the spread of violent crime in the Middle District of Pennsylvania.  Led by the United States Attorney’s Office, the VRCP consists of federal, state and local law enforcement agencies whose mission is to locate, apprehend, and prosecute individuals who commit violent crimes.

Indictments are only allegations. All persons charged are presumed to be innocent unless and until found guilty in court.

A sentence following a finding of guilt is imposed by the Judge after consideration of the applicable federal sentencing statutes and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines.

The maximum penalty for all charges under federal law is up to 25 years imprisonment, a term of supervised release following imprisonment, and $750,000 in fines. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the Judge is required to consider and weigh a number of factors, including the nature, circumstances and seriousness of the offense; the history and characteristics of the defendant; and the need to punish the defendant, protect the public and provide for the defendant's educational, vocational and medical needs. For these reasons, the statutory maximum penalty for the offense is not an accurate indicator of the potential sentence for a specific defendant.


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Updated March 1, 2016