DOJ Seal

Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
District of New Mexico

For Immediate Release

Thursday, August 13, 2015
Damon P. Martinez
, United States Attorney
Contact: Elizabeth Martinez

Albuquerque Man Pleads Guilty to Violating Federal Firearms Laws

            ALBUQUERQUE – Joseph Wallace Apodaca, 39, of Albuquerque, N.M., pleaded guilty today in federal court to being a felon in possession of firearms and ammunition.


            Apodaca was arrested on August 21, 2014, on an indictment charging him with being a felon in possession of firearms and ammunition on May 14, 2014, in Bernalillo County, N.M.  The indictment was superseded on Jan. 21, 2015.  Apodaca was prohibited at the time from being in possession of firearms and ammunition because he had previously been convicted of aggravated burglary, conspiracy to commit aggravated burglary, tampering with evidence and residential burglary.


            During today’s proceedings, Apodaca pled guilty to the superseding indictment and admitted that on May 14, 2014, he was approached by Albuquerque Police Department (APD) officers as he was exiting his vehicle, where APD officers viewed a handgun in his vehicle.  Apodaca further admitted that he told officers he was a convicted felon in possession of a handgun.


            At sentencing, Apodaca faces a maximum of ten years in prison followed by not more than three years of supervised release.  He remains detained pending a sentencing hearing which has yet to be scheduled.


            This case was investigated by the Albuquerque office of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Albuquerque Police Department.  Assistant U.S. Attorney Norman Cairns is prosecuting this case.


# # #

Phoenix Field Division