Skip to main content
Press Release

Edgerton Man Sentenced to a Year for Straw Purchasing Firearms

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

MADISON, WIS. – Timothy M. O’Shea, United States Attorney for the Western District of Wisconsin, announced that Lorenzo Lacey, 27, Edgerton, Wisconsin, was sentenced yesterday by U.S. District Judge William M. Conley to one year and one day in federal prison for inducing and causing another person to make a false statement during the purchase of a firearm from a federally licensed firearms dealer. Lacey pleaded guilty to this charge on March 7, 2024. The prison term will be followed by 3 years of supervised release. 

Lacey induced and caused co-defendant Irene Johll, 23, Oregon, Wisconsin, to falsely state on firearms purchase forms that she was the actual purchaser of three handguns, when in fact Lacey was the actual purchaser. The practice of lying to a firearms dealer about the identity of the actual purchaser is commonly referred to as a “straw purchase” and it is illegal.

At Lacey’s sentencing, Judge Conley was troubled by Lacey’s actions in this case, stating that there were many red flags indicating the severity of his conduct. Judge Conley noted that dangerous shootings are too common in Madison, and that many of the firearms used in those incidents are illegally obtained. 

On March 26, 2024, Johll pleaded guilty to three counts of making a false statement during the purchase of a firearm. She is participating in a deferred sentencing agreement.

“The U.S. Attorney’s Office is committed to prosecuting ‘straw purchase’ cases” said U.S. Attorney Timothy O’Shea. “I am grateful for the strong partnership we have with the Fitchburg Police Department. Our office will continue to work closely with ATF and local law enforcement partners to reduce gun violence by holding accountable those who use guns in crime and those who provide guns to criminals.” 

Lacey is currently charged in Dane County Circuit Court in connection with a shooting that allegedly involved one of the firearms purchased for him by Johll. That case is still pending, and Lacey is presumed innocent in that case unless proven guilty.

The federal charges against Lacey were the result of an investigation conducted by the Fitchburg Police Department and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Assistant U.S. Attorney Corey Stephan prosecuted this case.

This case has been brought as part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), the U.S. Justice Department’s program to reduce violent crime. The PSN approach emphasizes coordination between state and federal prosecutors and all levels of law enforcement to address gun crime, especially felons illegally possessing firearms and ammunition and violent and drug crimes that involve the use of firearms.

Updated June 6, 2024

Project Safe Neighborhoods