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Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives

District of Alaska

For Immediate Release

March 21, 2012

Karen L. Loeffler, United States Attorney

Contact: AUSA Kelley Cavanaugh

Bethel Man Sentenced to 180 Months

Anchorage, Alaska – United States Attorney Karen L. Loeffler announced that on, Tuesday, March 20, 2012, that Freddie Abraham, a resident of Bethel, Alaska, was sentenced in federal court in Anchorage to 180 months imprisonment for his conviction of being a felon in possession firearms. The 180 month sentence will run concurrently with Abraham's conviction with the State of Alaska in 4BE-10-1317 CR, where he received a sentence of 20 years to serve for a conviction of Manslaughter.

United States District Court Judge Timothy M. Burgess imposed the sentence on Abraham, 52. According to information presented to the court by Assistant United States Attorney Kelly Cavanaugh, on December 30, 2010, the Bethel Police responded to a report that an individual had been shot at a residence inside an apartment building in Bethel, Alaska. When police arrived, Abraham was outside the building and directed them to an apartment inside where they found five individuals and the victim. One witness told police that Abraham had shot the victim with a black rifle. In the residence, Bethel Police observed on a chair in the living room a shotgun that appeared to have a sawed off barrel and stock, later identified as a Browning Field Model 12 gauge shotgun. Propped in the corner of the bedroom Bethel Police observed another firearm, a Winchester, Model 70 XTR Sporter Magnum, .264 Winchester Magnum caliber rifle.

While police were responding to this residence, an individual from a neighboring building reported that his son had found a black assault rifle inside a garbage dumpster between the buildings. When police retrieved the rifle, it was identified as a Saiga, 7.62 x 39 caliber semi automatic rifle, a magazine was attached to the rifle that contained 8 live rounds of 7.62 x 39 caliber ammunition as well as one live round in the chamber.

The United States informed the Court that during a police interview Abraham told police that the shooting had occurred in his apartment, that all of the firearms were his rifles, and that he had watched the victim slap a female in his residence. Court documents indicate that after seeing the victim slap the female, Abraham went to his bedroom and retrieved his SKS rifle, inserted a magazine into the rifle, cycled a round in the chamber, and shot the victim one time. Abraham admitted possessing the firearm found in the dumpster and that it was the weapon used to shoot the victim.

Abraham was subject to an enhanced sentence under 18 U.S.C. § 924(e)(1) due to his 3 prior felony convictions that increased the maximum penalty for being a Felon in Possession of a Firearm from 10 years imprisonment to life imprisonment and also imposed the mandatory minimum penalty of 15 years, Judge Burgess found that Abraham’s 3 prior felonies were violent felonies and he should be classified as an Armed Career Criminal under 18 U.S.C. § 924(e)(1) and the 15 year mandatory minimum sentence of imprisonment applied.

Prior to imposing sentence, Judge Burgess stated that he was concerned about Abraham’s prior assaultive behavior and concerned about him continuing to commit violent crimes, Judge Burgess stated that this sentence reflected the need to protect the public from future crimes of Abraham.

Abraham was prosecuted as part of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the District of Alaska’s Rural Prosecution Initiative, a part of the Department of Justice’s commitment to improved public safety for rural Alaska and Alaskan tribal communities.

Ms. Loeffler commended the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, Bethel Police, and Alaska State Troopers for the investigation leading to the successful prosecution of Abraham.