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Press Release

Independence Man Pleads Guilty to Illegal Firearm Following Police Chase in Stolen Truck

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Western District of Missouri

KANSAS CITY, Mo. – An Independence, Missouri, man pleaded guilty in federal court today to illegally possessing a firearm following a police chase in a stolen pickup truck.

John D. Seger, 28, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Greg Kays to being a felon in possession of a firearm.

By pleading guilty today, Seger admitted that he was in possession of a Phoenix handgun while driving a stolen pickup truck on Jan. 18, 2017. Independence police officers saw Seger run a red light. Officers attempted a traffic stop, but Seger fled from police and stopped only after the vehicle wrecked and became inoperable. Seger fled on foot before being apprehended by police. Officers then found the handgun inside the pickup truck.

Under federal law, it is illegal for anyone who has been convicted of a felony to be in possession of any firearm or ammunition. Seger has a prior felony conviction for voluntary manslaughter, two prior felony convictions for burglary, two prior convictions for tampering with a motor vehicle, and a prior felony conviction for resisting arrest.

Under federal statutes, Seger is subject to a sentence of up to 10 years in federal prison without parole. The maximum statutory sentence is prescribed by Congress and is provided here for informational purposes, as the sentencing of the defendant will be determined by the court based on the advisory sentencing guidelines and other statutory factors. A sentencing hearing will be scheduled after the completion of a presentence investigation by the United States Probation Office.

This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Mary Kate Butterfield. It was investigated by the Independence, Mo., Police Department and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

Project Safe Neighborhoods
The U.S. Attorney’s Office is partnering with federal, state, and local law enforcement to specifically identify criminals responsible for significant violent crime in the Western District of Missouri. A centerpiece of this effort is Project Safe Neighborhoods, a program that brings together all levels of law enforcement to reduce violent crime and make neighborhoods safer for everyone. Project Safe Neighborhoods is an evidence-based program that identifies the most pressing violent crime problems in the community and develops comprehensive solutions to address them. As part of this strategy, Project Safe Neighborhoods focuses enforcement efforts on the most violent offenders and partners with locally based prevention and reentry programs for lasting reductions in crime.

Updated January 8, 2021

Project Safe Neighborhoods