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Justice News

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

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Thursday, October 6, 2022

Schofield Man Sentenced to 24 Months for Making False Statements During Purchase of Firearms

MADISON, WIS. – Timothy M. O’Shea, United States Attorney for the Western District of Wisconsin, announced that Kyle Ritchie, 31, Schofield, Wisconsin was sentenced today by U.S. District Judge William M. Conley to 24 months in federal prison for making false statements during the purchase of firearms. This prison term will be followed by 3 years of supervised release. Ritchie pleaded guilty to this charge on July 15, 2022.

Between May 23 and 28, 2021, Ritchie purchased four firearms from federally licensed firearm dealers in the Wausau, Wisconsin area. In order to complete the purchases of these firearms, the defendant represented that he was the actual buyer of these firearms when in fact he was not. An investigation by law enforcement revealed Ritchie purchased these firearms for Victor Pennington, who in exchange provided methamphetamine to Ritchie.

Pennington, who is prohibited from purchasing firearms as a result of multiple Wisconsin felony convictions, pleaded guilty to a federal charge of conspiracy to distribute methamphetamine on September 27, 2022. Pennington will be sentenced by Judge Conley on January 4, 2023.

At the sentencing hearing, Judge Conley stated that the seriousness of the defendant’s offense warranted a prison sentence, despite the fact he has not before served a prison sentence. Judge Conley also found that Ritchie knew he was purchasing guns for a known drug dealer, and that the defendant’s own addiction did not excuse his crimes.

The charge against Ritchie was a result of an investigation conducted by the Central Wisconsin Narcotics Task Force; Wisconsin Department of Justice Division of Criminal Investigation; and Federal Bureau of Investigation. The prosecution of this case has been handled by Assistant U.S. Attorney Taylor L. Kraus. 

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Updated October 6, 2022