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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
District of Minnesota

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, April 25, 2022

Federal Jury Convicts St. Paul Felon for Illegal Possession of a Firearm

ST. PAUL, Minn. – A federal jury convicted a St. Paul man of illegal possession of a firearm as a felon, announced U.S. Attorney Andrew M. Luger.

Following a three-day trial before U.S. District Judge Nancy E. Brasel, Samson Diamonte Xavior-Smith, 27, was convicted on April 21, 2022, of one count of being a felon in possession of a firearm. A sentencing hearing will be scheduled at a later time.

According to the evidence presented at trial, on June 25, 2021, the St. Paul Police Department received a 911 call reporting a pedestrian, later identified as Xavior-Smith, had pointed a gun at the driver of a stopped vehicle on the Robert Street Bridge. St. Paul Police officers responded to the scene and, after a foot chase, apprehended Xavior-Smith at the intersection of 4th Street and Cedar Street. During the chase, officers observed, and city surveillance cameras recorded, Xavior-Smith place an object into a trash can. Immediately after his arrest, officers looked inside that trash can and recovered a Sig Sauer, Model P290RS, 9mm pistol from the trash can. Subsequent testing found Xavior-Smith’s DNA on the gun.

Because Xavior-Smith has multiple prior felony convictions in Ramsey and Washington Counties, he is prohibited under federal law from possessing firearms or ammunition at any time.

This case was prosecuted as part of the joint federal, state, and local Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN) Program, the centerpiece of the Department of Justice’s violent crime reduction efforts. PSN is an evidence-based program proven to be effective at reducing violent crime. Through PSN, a broad spectrum of stakeholders work together to identify the most pressing violent crime problems in the community and develop comprehensive solutions to address them. As part of this strategy, PSN focuses enforcement efforts on the most violent offenders and partners with locally based prevention and reentry programs for lasting reductions in crime.

This case was the result of an investigation conducted by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives and the St. Paul Police Department.

This case was tried by Assistant U.S. Attorney Benjamin Bejar.

Topic(s): 
Project Safe Neighborhoods
Firearms Offenses
Violent Crime
Component(s): 
Updated April 25, 2022