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Press Release

Cedar Rapids Man that Unlawfully Possessed Three Guns Sentenced to Federal Prison

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of Iowa
Fired One Gun in a Parking Lot

A Cedar Rapids man who illegally possessed a different firearm on multiple occasions was sentenced today to more than three years in federal prison.

Michael Gene Hodges, Jr., age 26, from Cedar Rapids, Iowa, received the prison term after a guilty plea to one-count of possession of a firearm as a drug user. 

In a plea agreement, Hodges admitted that he illegally possessed three firearms as a drug user: one on March 24, 2019, another on May 11, 2019, and a third on February 6, 2020.  Evidence at sentencing showed that Hodges discharged the firearm he possessed on March 24, 2019, during an incident that occurred in the parking lot of Woody’s Show Club in Cedar Rapids, Iowa.          

Hodges was sentenced in Cedar Rapids by United States District Court Judge C.J. Williams.  Hodges was sentenced to 42 months’ imprisonment.  He must also serve a three-year term of supervised release after the prison term.  There is no parole in the federal system.

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN).  PSN is 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 is also part of Project Guardian, the Department of Justice’s signature initiative to reduce gun violence and enforce federal firearms laws. Initiated by the Attorney General in the fall of 2019, Project Guardian draws upon the Department’s past successful programs to reduce gun violence; enhances coordination of federal, state, local, and tribal authorities in investigating and prosecuting gun crimes; improves information-sharing by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives when a prohibited individual attempts to purchase a firearm and is denied by the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS), to include taking appropriate actions when a prospective purchaser is denied by the NICS for mental health reasons; and ensures that federal resources are directed at the criminals posing the greatest threat to our communities. For more information about Project Guardian, please see /media/1122011/download?inline.

Hodges is being held in the United States Marshal’s custody until he can be transported to a federal prison.

The case was prosecuted by Special Assistant United States Attorney Dillan Edwards and investigated by the Cedar Rapids Safe Streets Task Force.  The task force is composed of representatives from the Federal Bureau of Investigation and the Cedar Rapids Police Department. 

Court file information at

The case file number is 19-CR-00130.

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Updated September 17, 2020

Project Guardian
Project Safe Neighborhoods
Firearms Offenses