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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, April 3, 2014

Hogsett Announces Sentencing Of Vermillion County Man

U.S. Attorney says prosecution of illegally-armed felon is part of Violent Crime Initiative

CLINTON, IN - Joseph H. Hogsett, the United States Attorney, announced today the federal sentencing of a Vermillion County man on federal firearms charges. Danny K. Hight, age 47, of Cayuga, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge William Lawrence to 70 months (5 years, 10 months) for illegally possessing a firearm as a convicted felon.

“Three years ago, this Office pledged to federally prosecute more illegally-armed felons than ever before,” Hogsett said. “Our success in that effort has been due to cases similar to what has been alleged here - collaborative investigations targeting career criminals who view our local jails as their personal revolving door.”

The indictment alleges on October 11, 2012, law enforcement found Hight to be in possession of a Mossberg 12 gauge shotgun. Hight is a convicted felon, and therefore is not legally entitled to possess a firearm. His extensive criminal history includes convictions in Vermillion County for operating a vehicle while intoxicated, residential entry and criminal recklessness. He also has prior convictions in Marion County and Hancock County on charges of forgery and burglary.

This prosecution comes as part of the U.S. Attorney’s Violent Crime Initiative (VCI), and is the result of a collaborative investigation by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, as well as Vermillion County law enforcement.

Announced in March of 2011, the Violent Crime Initiative represents a district-wide strategy to work with local law enforcement and county prosecutors to combat drug traffickers and criminals that use and carry firearms in their illegal activities. 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.

“Through our Violent Crime Initiative, and in working with our law enforcement partners here in Vermillion County, we’re sending a united message that illegally-armed felons will face the full force of federal law,” Hogsett added.

According to Assistant U.S. Attorney Matthew J. Rinka, who is prosecuting the case for the government, Hight also must serve three years of supervised release after his prison term.

Updated January 26, 2015