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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Southern District of Indiana

Friday, March 28, 2014

Hogsett Announces Sentencing Of Anderson Man On Federal Firearms Charges

Counselor had illegal arsenal of four dozen guns, more than ten thousand rounds of ammunition

INDIANAPOLIS – Joseph H. Hogsett, the United States Attorney, announced today that Dr. Bruce E. Jones, Ph.D., age 66, of Anderson, has been sentenced to 100 months (over eight years) by U.S. District Judge Tanya Walton Pratt for illegally possessing firearms and ammunition. The defendant is a previously licensed family and addiction counselor in Madison County.

“Thanks to the tireless efforts of prosecutors and our law enforcement partners, we have brought to justice a person whose total disregard for the rule of law was a danger to this community,” Hogsett said. “This case represents exactly what our Violent Crime Initiative is all about – collaborating across jurisdictions to make Central Indiana a safer place to live and work.”

FBI Special Agent in Charge Robert A. Jones said, “Felons are prohibited from possessing firearms and the FBI will vigorously pursue individuals that violate the law."

An investigation of Jones was launched by the Federal Bureau of Investigation in 2010, and search warrants were executed in May of that year. Investigators found evidence of federal firearms violations at three different properties owned by Jones. This included two locations in Madison County, as well as a cabin in rural Montana. The FBI was assisted by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, as well as local law enforcement agencies.

All told, those search warrants revealed an illegal arsenal of four dozen firearms and 14,000 rounds of ammunition. Jones was not entitled to possess these weapons due to his 1984 conviction for dealing in a controlled substance. The defendant served three years in prison for that crime, but later became a practicing counselor with a doctorate degree.

This sentencing comes as part of the U.S. Attorney’s Violent Crime Initiative (VCI). Launched in March 2011, the VCI has produced a dramatic increase in the number of gun-related charges brought federally. In the year preceding the initiative, there were just 14 defendants charged with federal gun crimes by the U.S. Attorney’s Office. In the nearly three years since, more than 225 defendants have been charged.

According to Assistant U.S. Attorney Bradley Shepard who prosecuted the case for the government, Jones also must forfeit 47 firearms, pay a $12,000 fine and will serve three years of supervised release after his sentence. Jones is also scheduled to go to trial in June on federal health care fraud charges.

Updated January 26, 2015