For Immediate Release
Edgerton Man Sentenced to 5 Years for Illegal Gun Possession During Civil Unrest
MADISON, WIS. – Timothy M. O’Shea, Acting United States Attorney for the Western District of Wisconsin, announced that Kyle Olson, 29, Edgerton, Wisconsin was sentenced today by U.S. District Judge William M. Conley to 27 months in prison for being a felon in possession of a firearm. Olson pleaded guilty to this charge on December 1, 2020.
On May 31, 2020, downtown Madison was experiencing civil unrest following peaceful protests. Olson saw a live video feed of these events and drove to Madison to see it for himself. Olson said that he brought a loaded .45 caliber handgun with him for protection because of what was going on in the area. At the time, Olson had four felony car theft convictions from 2015 and was on supervision after being released from state prison.
When Olson arrived downtown, several Madison Police Department officers observed him take a gun out of his trunk, tuck it into his waistband, and conceal it with his shirt. Because of the escalating violence in the area, the officers detained Olson to determine if he had a valid concealed carry permit. As the officers recovered the gun, Olson told them that he was a felon and knew he should not have the gun.
At sentencing, Judge Conley said that he was very thankful that the officers intervened, considering the violent civil unrest in the area. Judge Conley also said that it was deeply concerning that Olson said he drove to Madison because he was “tired of watching people burn down buildings.” Judge Conley noted that this was the latest in a long string of self-destructive behaviors by Olson that endangered others and, in this case, the police.
The charge against Olson was the result of an investigation conducted by the Madison Police Department and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. The prosecution of the case has been handled by Assistant U.S. Attorney Corey Stephan.
This case has been brought as part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), the U.S. Justice Department’s program to reduce violent crime. The PSN approach emphasizes coordination between state and federal prosecutors and all levels of law enforcement to address gun crime, especially felons illegally possessing firearms and ammunition and violent and drug crimes that involve the use of firearms.