For Immediate Release
Englewood Convicted Felon Indicted for Possessing a Firearm
Tampa, Florida – United States Attorney A. Lee Bentley, III announces the return of an indictment charging Ernest L. Chambliss (44, Englewood) with possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. Chambliss has been charged as an Armed Career Criminal and faces a mandatory minimum penalty of 15 years, up to life, in federal prison. The indictment also notifies him that the United States intends to forfeit the firearm used in the offense.
According to the indictment, Chambliss possessed a 9 millimeter pistol on or about April 16, 2015. Prior to the incident, he was previously convicted of cocaine trafficking, resisting an officer with violence, and battery on a law enforcement officer and therefore was prohibited from possessing a firearm or ammunition under federal law.
An indictment is merely a formal charge that a defendant has violated one or more federal criminal laws, and every defendant is presumed innocent unless, and until, proven guilty.
This case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Gregory T. Nolan.
This is another case prosecuted as a part of the Department of Justice’s “Project Safe Neighborhoods” Program - a nationwide, gun-violence reduction strategy. United States Attorney A. Lee Bentley, III, along with Regina Lombardo, Special Agent in Charge, ATF, is coordinating the Project Safe Neighborhoods effort here in the Middle District of Florida in cooperation with federal, state, and local law enforcement officials. It is also a part of ATF’s Frontline strategy to reduce violence in our communities.