U.S. Department of Justice
United States Attorney
District of Minnesota
District of Minnesota
For Immediate Release
Thursday, November 8, 2012
Anoka Man Sentenced for Being a Career Criminal in Possession of a Firearm
MINNEAPOLIS — Today in federal court, a 26–year–old Anoka felon was sentenced for possessing a .40–caliber, semi–automatic pistol and a 12–gauge shotgun. United States District Judge Ann D. Montgomery sentenced Jesse Ray Bennett to 180 months in federal prison on one count of being an armed career criminal in possession of a firearm. Bennett, who was indicted on June 5, 2012, pleaded guilty on August 1, 2012.
In his plea agreement, Bennett admitted that sometime after 2:00 a.m. on November 11, 2011, neighbors complained to police about the noise he and his friends were making. Angry with the neighbors, he retrieved the two firearms from the bedroom of his residence after the police left the premises. He ultimately fled the scene, throwing the guns in a nearby back yard. Authorities recovered the weapons a short time later.
Because he is a felon, Bennett is prohibited under federal law from possessing a firearm at any time. His prior convictions from Hennepin County include aggravated robbery in the first degree (2003), assault in the second degree (2003), burglary in the first degree (2006), and felon in possession of a firearm (2006). In addition, he was convicted of being a felon in possession of a firearm (2005) in Anoka County.
Because three of Bennett’s convictions constitute crimes of violence, sentencing in the current federal case was subject to the federal Armed Career Criminal Act. That act mandates a minimum of 15 years in prison for anyone convicted in federal court of being a felon in possession of a firearm.
This case was the result of an investigation by the Anoka Police Department and the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. It was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Allen A. Slaughter.
Note, this case was part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), an initiative launched by the U.S. Justice Department in 2001 to promote a multi–jurisdictional, comprehensive approach to reducing gun crime in America. PSN provides resources to strengthen law enforcement and crime prevention partnerships that work to make our communities safer.