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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Northern District of California

Thursday, August 18, 2016

San Francisco Resident Sentenced To More Than Eight Years In Prison For Brandishing A Firearm And Assaulting Persons Assisting A Federal Officer

SAN FRANCISCO – Donnie Bell was sentenced to 97 months and one day in prison today after pleading guilty to assaulting a person assisting a federal officer in the performance of official duties and brandishing a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence, announced United States Attorney Brian J. Stretch and U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) Special Agent in Charge Jill Snyder.  The sentence was handed down by the Honorable William H. Orrick, United States District Judge. 

As part of his plea agreement, Bell, 34, of San Francisco, admitted he met with two individuals at a gas station in San Francisco and later learned that the individuals were working as confidential informants on behalf of special agents of the ATF.  He then entered the back seat of the informants’ car and brandished a firearm in such a way as to put the informants in fear of immediate bodily harm. 

Bell was originally charged by complaint on April 29, 2015.  On March 16, 2016, he was charged by superseding information with one count of assault on a person assisting a federal officer or employee in the performance of official duties, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 111(b); and one count of brandishing a firearm during and in relation to a crime of violence, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 924(c).  On March 24, 2016, Bell pleaded guilty to both counts in the superseding information.  

Judge Orrick also sentenced Bell to a five-year period of supervised release, to commence after Bell completes his prison sentence.  Bell has been in custody since his arrest in April of 2015.  He will begin serving his sentence immediately.  

Assistant U.S. Attorney Scott Joiner prosecuted the case with assistance from Ponly Tu.  The prosecution is the result of an investigation by the ATF.

Firearms Offenses
Violent Crimes
Updated September 20, 2016