KANSAS CITY, Mo. – A Kansas City, Mo., man has been convicted by a federal trial jury of illegally possessing firearms in a case that began when police officers followed a trail of blood from a drive-by shooting.
Tyreese Thompson, 29, was found guilty on Tuesday, March 26, of two counts of being a felon in possession of firearms.
Kansas City, Mo., police officers responded to an apartment building in the 8600 block of Newton Avenue on Nov. 30, 2014, when neighbors reported hearing gunshots. Witnesses told the officers they heard a loud noise that could have been gunshots, then saw an individual, later identified as Thompson, firing gunshots as he stood by a red car in the middle of the street. Witnesses told the officers they saw Thompson and a woman, later identified as his girlfriend, go into the apartment building then leave in the red car.
Officers saw a trail of blood from the street to the building, then up the stairs of the building to the door of an apartment. Officers recovered 12 shell casings from the street; six were 9 millimeter and six were .45 caliber.
Officers then responded to Research Medical Center in response to a report that a shooting victim was in the emergency room with non-life-threatening gunshot wounds to his elbow, forearm and pelvis. The shooting victim was Thompson, who was accompanied by his girlfriend. They told officers that Thompson had been shot while in the driver’s seat of her car, by unknown assailants who drove past them in a gray car.
Police officers searched the apartment and found blood droplets throughout the apartment and a Sig Sauer 9mm semi-automatic pistol on top of a counter. Officers also searched the vehicle, which had six bullet holes in the exterior driver’s side door. An examination of the firearm later indicated that Thompson’s DNA was on the grip; his DNA was also in the blood swabbed from a handrail. Investigators also determined that the six 9mm shell casings found in the street were all fired from the Sig Sauer pistol.
On March 8, 2016, law enforcement officers were conducting surveillance on a residence on 72nd Street in Kansas City, Mo. When they entered the house, Thompson was inside. He was covered in dirt and spider webs. An officer noticed that a hatch to the attic, located inside a closet, had recently been opened. The officer opened the hatch, climbed into the attic, and found a Glock 9mm pistol, a Romarm “mini Draco” 7.62 x 39mm pistol, a CMMG .223-caliber rifle, and a Mossberg .22-caliber rifle.
Under federal law, it is illegal for anyone who has been convicted of a felony to be in possession of any firearm or ammunition. Thompson has two prior felony convictions related to trafficking marijuana and prior felony convictions for possessing cocaine and for robbery.
Following the presentation of evidence, the jury in the U.S. District Court in Kansas City, Mo., deliberated for about an hour and a half before returning the guilty verdicts to U.S. District Judge Roseann Ketchmark, ending a trial that began Monday, March 25, 2019.
Under federal statutes, Thompson is subject to a mandatory minimum sentence of 15 years in federal prison without parole, up to a sentence of life in federal prison without parole. The maximum statutory sentence is prescribed by Congress and is provided here for informational purposes, as the sentencing of the defendant will be determined by the court based on the advisory sentencing guidelines and other statutory factors. A sentencing hearing will be scheduled after the completion of a presentence investigation by the United States Probation Office.
This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney David Raskin and Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Mary Kate Butterfield. It was investigated by the Kansas City, Mo., Police Department and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
Project Safe Neighborhoods
The U.S. Attorney’s Office is partnering with federal, state, and local law enforcement to specifically identify criminals responsible for significant violent crime in the Western District of Missouri. A centerpiece of this effort is Project Safe Neighborhoods, a program that brings together all levels of law enforcement to reduce violent crime and make neighborhoods safer for everyone. Project Safe Neighborhoods is an evidence-based program that identifies the most pressing violent crime problems in the community and develops comprehensive solutions to address them. As part of this strategy, Project Safe Neighborhoods focuses enforcement efforts on the most violent offenders and partners with locally based prevention and reentry programs for lasting reductions in crime.