DOJ Seal

Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
Eastern District of California

For Immediate Release

Monday, July 27, 2015
Benjamin B. Wagner
, United States Attorney
Contact: Lauren Horwood

Fresno Man Sentenced to 10 Years in Prison for Being a Felon in Possession of a Firearm

FRESNO, Calif. — United States District Judge Lawrence J. O’Neill sentenced Stephen Stinson, 45, of Fresno, today to 10 years in prison for being a convicted felon in possession of a firearm, United States Attorney Benjamin B. Wagner announced.

According to court documents, on January 22, 2014, police officers stopped Stinson for driving while using a cellphone. The officers noticed a large blade protruding from under the driver’s seat and saw a knife on the passenger’s seat. Officers discovered that Stinson had no driver’s license, was on probation and had a warrant for his arrest. During a search of the car, officers found a sawed-off shot gun and ammunition. Stinson had two prior felony convictions and was prohibited from possessing a firearm.

“Every time we seize a single firearm from a convicted felon, we prevent impending violent acts from occurring in our neighborhoods,” stated ATF Acting Special Agent in Charge Eric D. Harden. “ATF and our partners will not surrender to those who are a threat to our communities and cannot lawfully possess a firearm.”

This case is a product of an investigation by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Fresno Police Department. The case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods, which is a joint initiative to combat gang and gun violence. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Kimberly Sanchez and Patrick R. Delahunty prosecuted the case.

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Field Division: San Francisco Field Division