Department of Justice
For Immediate Release
KC Man Pleads Guilty to Illegally Possessing Machine Gun Used in Fatal Shooting of KC Fireman
KANSAS CITY, Mo. – A Kansas City, Mo., man pleaded guilty in federal court today to illegally possessing the firearm used in the fatal shooting of an Independence, Mo., firefighter during an altercation in a liquor store parking lot.
Ja’Von L. Taylor, 23, pleaded guilty before U.S. District Judge Stephen R. Bough to one count of being a felon in possession of a firearm and one count of possessing a machine gun. Taylor has been detained in federal custody without bond since his arrest.
By pleading guilty today, Taylor admitted he was in possession of a Glock .40-caliber handgun, which had been converted to a machine gun. Under federal law, it is illegal for anyone who has been convicted of a felony to be in possession of any firearm or ammunition. Taylor has prior felony convictions for robbery and distributing marijuana.
According to court documents, Independence police officers were dispatched to Liquor Land, 11100 E. U.S. 40 Highway in Independence, on a reported shooting of an Independence firefighter on Oct. 6, 2022. Taylor was located across the street and taken into custody.
Officers searched Taylor’s vehicle and found the Glock machine gun, a broken extended magazine, and a 15-round magazine. Taylor told investigators that he bought the gun from a guy off the street a few months ago for $500.
Under federal statutes, Taylor is subject to a sentence of up to 25 years 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 is scheduled on Aug. 3, 2023.
This case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Gregg R. Coonrod. It was investigated by the Independence, Mo., Police Department and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.