Delaware Man Sentenced for Federal Firearm Violation
BECKLEY, W.Va. – A Delaware man was sentenced to 5 years for a federal firearm violation, announced United States Attorney Michael B. Stuart. Jeffrey M. Burris, 41, of Wilmington, Delaware, formerly of Nettie, West Virginia, pled guilty in September 2017 to a single count of possessing firearms which were not registered in the National Firearms Registration and Transfer Record. Stuart commended the investigative work of the West Virginia State Police and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).
“As I’ve said before, I strongly support the Second Amendment, but those who break our gun laws will pay a heavy price,” said United States Attorney Stuart.
On May 10, 2017, the West Virginia State Police contacted ATF agents to advise that troopers were called to the Burris's residence in Nettie in response to a domestic disturbance call received from Mrs. Burris. Mrs. Burris advised 911 operators that Burris was taking and concealing evidence in the woods behind their residence. Upon arrival at the residence, officers indicated they could hear an all-terrain vehicle (ATV) in the woods behind the residence. Mrs. Burris met officers in the driveway and advised that Burris was hiding evidence in the woods, and Burris had a firearm in his possession.
Officers proceeded to the woods in an attempt to locate Burris. Unsuccessful in locating Burris, officers returned to the residence and spoke with Mayra Burris, who advised that after Burris learned officers were at the residence earlier in the day regarding an ATF tip alleging he possessed illegal firearm silencers, Burris became angry. Burris loaded items onto his ATV and took them into the woods to hide.
While speaking with Mrs. Burris, officers heard and observed an ATV coming from the woods. The ATV was driven by Burris. Officers made contact with Burris and observed he was armed with two pistols and an AR-style rifle. Officers secured Burris, secured the weapons for officer safety, and placed Burris into custody.
On May 11, 2017, ATF agents and WVSP troopers returned to the Burris residence. The agents searched over 30 acres of property owned by Burris. During a search of the residence, officers seized several thousand rounds of ammunition from an upstairs attic area, along with additional marijuana paraphernalia found near a gun safe. In the wooded area surrounding the residence where Burris had initially fled to prior to his arrest the previous evening, officers discovered a black cylindrical container and a blue five-gallon bucket with a lid. Inside the bucket, officers found four homemade silencers with mounting hardware/adapters. Inside the cylindrical container, officers discovered a Cobray/Street Sweeper, 12-gauge semi-automatic shotgun; an RPB Industries, Model M-10, 9-millimeter pistol with a partially obliterated serial number; a German MP40, 9-milliter machinegun, three firearm trigger assemblies and marijuana paraphernalia.
Fourteen of the approximately 70 firearms seized from the Burris property were required to be registered with the National Firearms Registration and Transfer Record. None of the 14 were.
C. Haley Bunn and R. Gregory McVey handled the prosecution. United States District Court Judge Irene C. Berger handed down the sentence.
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 make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. Attorney General Jeff Sessions reinvigorated PSN in 2017 as part of the Department’s renewed focus on targeting violent criminals, directing all U.S. Attorney’s Offices to work in partnership with federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement and the local community to develop effective, locally-based strategies to reduce violent crime.