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Press Release

Waterloo Man Sentenced for Possessing a Firearm as a Drug User

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

A man who possessed a firearm as an illegal user of a controlled substance was sentenced today to almost five years in federal prison.

Adaris Hawkins, age 23, from Waterloo, Iowa, received the prison term after an August 29, 2022 guilty plea to one count of possession of a firearm by a drug user.

In a plea agreement, admitted that, on December 6, 2021, he knowingly possessed a firearm, a Glock G19 pistol, as a drug user.  Specifically, police went to Hawkins’ residence in Waterloo to execute a search warrant.  Police officers located Hawkins outside the residence in possession of the Glock pistol.  The firearm was equipped with an extended magazine and 33 rounds of ammunition.  Police obtained a sample of Hawkins’ urine which subsequently tested positive for marijuana.  Inside the home, police located marijuana and drug paraphernalia belonging to Hawkins.  Prior to the search, police officers located various social media posts depicting Hawkins using marijuana.  In addition, between July 2021 and April 2022, Hawkins purchased at least ten firearms.  On the ATF paperwork he completed when purchasing the firearms, Hawkins falsely claimed that he was purchasing the guns for himself and that he was not a drug user.  Several of the guns Hawkins purchased were on behalf of other persons who could not lawfully obtain firearms.  

Hawkins was sentenced in Cedar Rapids by United States District Court Judge C.J. Williams.  Hawkins was sentenced to 57 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.

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

The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorneys Lisa C. Williams and Daniel C. Tvedt and investigated by the Waterloo Police Department and the 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 gun violence, and to make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. On May 26, 2021, the Department launched a violent crime reduction strategy strengthening PSN based on these core principles: fostering trust and legitimacy in our communities, supporting community-based organizations that help prevent violence from occurring in the first place, setting focused and strategic enforcement priorities, and measuring the results.

Court file information at

The case file number is 22-CR-2020.

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Updated March 10, 2023

Project Safe Neighborhoods
Firearms Offenses