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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Western District of Kentucky

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Tuesday, August 24, 2021

Louisville Man Sentenced To 15 Years In Federal Prison For Illegally Possessing A Firearm While On State Parole

LOUISVILLE, KENTUCKY – A Louisville man was sentenced yesterday by United States District Judge David J. Hale to 15 years in prison, followed by a five-year term of supervised release, for possession of a handgun by a convicted felon.

According to court documents, Danel Tawan Mathis, Jr., age 31, possessed a firearm on April 13, 2019, in the Western District of Kentucky, Jefferson County, with knowledge that he had previously been convicted of a felony.  Court documents allege that Mathis had been convicted of three counts of Robbery in the second degree in Jefferson Circuit Court, case number 05-CR-731, on March 3, 2005, and two counts of Complicity to Robbery in the first degree in Jefferson Circuit Court, case number 06-CR-2667, on August 22, 2006.  At the time of this federal offense, Mathis was on state parole. 

During his plea, Mathis admitted in open court that he possessed a Hi-Point .380 and ammunition. He further admitted that he knew he was a convicted felon and that he was prohibited from possessing a firearm. 

Mathis has three prior convictions for crimes of violence and was sentenced to a 15-year mandatory-minimum term of imprisonment pursuant to the Armed Career Criminal Act.  There is no parole in the federal system.

“I commend the ATF and LMPD for their work in this case,” stated Acting U.S. Attorney Michael A. Bennett.  “We will continue to strategically utilize federal resources and partner with LMPD to target the most significant drivers of violence in Louisville.”   

“Firearms possessed by convicted felons pose a serious threat,” stated ATF Special Agent in Charge R. Shawn Morrow of the Louisville Division.  “Together with LMPD, ATF is committing to disarming dangerous felons and making our communities safer.  Our partnerships with local law enforcement and the USAO are getting results like this 15-year federal prison sentence.”

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) and the Louisville Metro Police Department (LMPD) investigated the case.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Joshua Judd prosecuted the case.

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), the centerpiece of the Department of Justice’s violent crime reduction efforts.  PSN is an evidence-based program proven to be effective at reducing violent crime.  Through PSN, a broad spectrum of stakeholders work together to identify the most pressing violent crime problems in the community and develop comprehensive solutions to address them.  As part of this strategy, PSN focuses enforcement efforts on the most violent offenders and partners with locally based prevention and reentry programs for lasting reductions in crime. 

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Updated August 24, 2021