For Immediate Release
D.C. Felon Sentenced to 30 Months in Federal Prison for Illegal Possession of a .40 Caliber “Ghost Gun” Firearm and 10 Rounds of Ammunition
Defendant Arrested in Prince George’s County in Possession of a Loaded “Ghost Gun”, which was Assembled from Firearm Parts Kits
Greenbelt, Maryland – U.S. District Judge Paula Xinis sentenced Martrel Rayshard Reeves, age 31, of Washington, D.C. to two years and six months in federal prison, followed by three years of supervised release, for being a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition.
The sentence was announced by Acting United States Attorney for the District of Maryland Jonathan Lenzner; Special Agent in Charge Timothy Jones of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) Baltimore Field Division; and Chief Malik Aziz of the Prince George’s County Police Department.
“The gun violence in Prince George’s County is simply unacceptable, and the proliferation of ghost guns in the region is part of the problem,” said Acting United States Attorney Jonathan F. Lenzner. “Working in collaboration with our federal and local law enforcement partners, we are committed to taking ghost guns off the streets and prosecuting those who illegally possess and sell them in order to make our community safer. Firearms trafficking and illegal firearms are a priority of the Department of Justice, and we hope this federal sentence will deter others from illegally possessing ghost guns.”
According to his plea agreement, on July 8, 2018, law enforcement executed a traffic stop on Reeves’ vehicle for traffic violations. The car was occupied by Reeves and a female passenger. At the time of the traffic stop, Reeves did not possess a driver’s license or other identification. A subsequent check of his driving record revealed that his license had been suspended. When officers asked Reeves to step out of the car, officers smelled alcohol on Reeves’ breath and the odor of marijuana on his person. During the search of his vehicle, law enforcement recovered a .40-caliber pistol, loaded with 10 rounds of ammunition. Reeves admitted at the scene that the firearm belonged to him, following which, he was arrested.
As detailed in Reeves’ plea agreement, the pistol was test-fired and found to function as a firearm. The gun recovered in Reeves’ car is what is known as a “ghost gun”—in that it was made from a firearm parts kit. These kits can be purchased from various kit manufacturers or secondary retailers, including Internet websites. Ghost guns frequently lack serial numbers, which generally make the firearms legally unregistrable and difficult to track.
This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN) is the centerpiece of the Department of Justice’s violent crime reduction efforts. PSN is an evidence-based program proven to be effective at reducing violent crime. Through PSN, a broad spectrum of stakeholders work together to identify the most pressing violent crime problems in the community and develop comprehensive solutions to address them. As part of this strategy, PSN focuses enforcement efforts on the most violent offenders and partners with locally based prevention and reentry programs for lasting reductions in crime.
Acting United States Attorney Jonathan F. Lenzner praised the ATF and the Prince George’s County Police Department for their work in the investigation. Mr. Lenzner thanked Assistant U.S. Attorneys Rajeev R. Raghavan and Erin B. Pulice, who prosecuted the case.
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