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CHICAGO — A Chicago man who allegedly pointed a loaded semiautomatic handgun at a federal agent early this morning has been charged with a federal firearm offense.
The agents approached JOSEPH HAMMOND near the 6800 block of South Sangamon Street in Chicago’s Englewood neighborhood while investigating a report of a man holding a gun and a toddler, according to a criminal complaint filed in U.S. District Court in Chicago. As the agents approached in a vehicle, Hammond pointed the gun at one of the agents’ faces and told them to “keep moving,” the complaint states. Hammond then picked up the toddler and ran from the area. The agents pursued Hammond and later arrested him nearby, the complaint states. Neither the toddler nor the agents were injured.
Hammond, 33, is charged with one count of illegal possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. Hammond was previously convicted of criminal felonies, including firearm offenses and attempted murder, and was not lawfully allowed to possess a firearm. A detention hearing in federal court in Chicago has been set for June 8, 2020.
The complaint was announced by John R. Lausch, Jr., United States Attorney for the Northern District of Illinois; Kristen deTineo, Special Agent-in-Charge of the Chicago Field Division of the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives; and David Brown, Superintendent of the Chicago Police Department. The government is represented by Assistant U.S. Attorney Misty N. Wright.
Holding gun offenders accountable through federal prosecution is a centerpiece of Project Guardian and Project Safe Neighborhoods – the Department of Justice’s violent crime reduction strategies. Project Guardian focuses specifically on investigating, prosecuting, and preventing gun crimes, and it emphasizes the importance of using modern technologies to promote gun crime intelligence. In the Northern District of Illinois, U.S. Attorney Lausch and law enforcement partners have deployed the Guardian and PSN programs to attack a broad range of violent crime issues facing the district, including by prosecuting individuals who illegally possess firearms.
The public is reminded that a complaint is not evidence of guilt. The defendant is presumed innocent and entitled to a fair trial at which the government has the burden of proving guilt beyond a reasonable doubt. Illegal possession of a firearm by a convicted felon is punishable by up to ten years in federal prison. If convicted, the Court must impose a reasonable sentence under federal statutes and the advisory U.S. Sentencing Guidelines.