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Press Release

South Dakota Man With Long Criminal History Sentenced to Federal Prison for Gun Charges

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of Iowa
Defendant was in possession of meth, marijuana and a gun.

A felon and drug user who illegally possessed a gun was sentenced June 11, 2020, to more than 3 years in federal prison.

Dennis Ray Wynn, 46, from Jefferson, South Dakota, received the prison term after a February 18, 2020, guilty plea to possession of a firearm by a felon and illegal drug user. 

Evidence presented by the United States at the detention, change of plea and sentencing hearings revealed on June 29, 2018, a traffic stop, led to the discovery of $4,650 in cash and admissions regarding the possession of methamphetamine and marijuana.  A search warrant executed at Wynn’s home located the methamphetamine and marijuana and a Jimenez Arms semiautomatic .22 caliber pistol among other things.

Wynn was sentenced in Sioux City by United States District Court Chief Judge Leonard T. Strand.  Wynn was sentenced to 46 months’ imprisonment.  He must also serve a 6-month 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. The United States Attorney’s Office has prosecuted this case with support from Project Guardian partners. For more information about Project Guardian, please see /media/1122011/download?inline.

The case was investigated by the Sioux City Police Department and the Tri-State Drug Task Force based in Sioux City, Iowa, that consists of law enforcement personnel from the Drug Enforcement Administration; Sioux City, Iowa, Police Department; U.S. Immigration and Customs Enforcement; Woodbury County Sheriff’s Office; South Sioux City, Nebraska, Police Department; Nebraska State Patrol; Iowa National Guard; Iowa Division of Narcotics Enforcement; United States Marshals Service; South Dakota Division of Criminal Investigation; and Woodbury County Attorney’s Office.  The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Forde Fairchild.

Court file information at

The case file number is 19-4071.  Follow us on Twitter @USAO_NDIA.

Updated June 12, 2020

Project Guardian
Project Safe Neighborhoods
Firearms Offenses