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Press Release

Great Falls Man Sentenced to Federal Prison for Firearm Offense

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

GREAT FALLS – Brian Denelson Willman, a 31-year-old Great Falls resident, was sentenced today to 25 months in prison followed by 2 years supervised release after pleading guilty to prohibited person in possession of a firearm on January 10, 2018.  U.S. District Judge Brian M. Morris handed down the sentence. 

On July 21, 2016, Willman possessed a stolen, Stevens .22 caliber rifle in Great Falls, Montana.  The day before, a Great Falls residence was burglarized and six firearms were taken, including a Stevens Arms Company, model Number 26 Crackshot, .22 caliber, single shot rifle, with no serial number.  A neighbor took a picture of the car involved and provided the picture and other information to the police.  The Great Falls Police Department tracked down the owner of the car and learned that Willman was using the car.  After a high speed pursuit, the police arrested Willman.  The Stevens .22 caliber rifle was found in the trunk of the car.  After his arrest, Willman called a friend from jail and discussed the stolen firearm found in the trunk of the car.  At the time, Willman was on absconder status with Montana Probation and Parole.  MT P&P received Willman on parole from Arizona through the interstate compact after his conviction for aggravated assault there.

The case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Paulette Stewart and investigated by the Russell Country Drug Task Force and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives. 

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and make our neighborhoods safer for everyone.   Attorney General Jeff Sessions reinvigorated PSN in 2017 as part of the Department’s renewed focus on targeting violent criminals, directing all U.S. Attorney’s Offices to work in partnership with federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement and the local community to develop effective, locally-based strategies to reduce violent crime.


Acting Public Information Officer
(406) 761-7715

Updated May 1, 2018

Project Safe Neighborhoods