DOJ Seal

Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
Western District of Wisconsin

For Immediate Release

Wednesday, July 19, 2023
Timothy M. O’Shea
, United States Attorney

La Crosse Felon Sentenced to 46 Months for Illegal Gun Possession

MADISON, WIS. – Timothy M. O’Shea, United States Attorney for the Western District of Wisconsin, announced that Kareem Nellem, 30, La Crosse, Wisconsin was sentenced today by Chief U.S. District Judge James D. Peterson to 46 months in federal prison for possessing a firearm as a felon. This prison term will be followed by a 3-year term of supervised release. Nellem pleaded guilty to this charge on April 12, 2023.

On March 30, 2022, the La Crosse Police Department conducted a search of Nellem’s residence in connection to a drug investigation. During the search, officers located a 9mm firearm in a dresser. The investigation revealed that on the same date his residence was searched, Nellem had posted to his publicly accessible Snapchat account a video of himself holding two firearms. The firearm recovered from his residence appeared consistent with one of those firearms. Nellem’s DNA was also later recovered from that firearm.

Nellem is prohibited from legally possessing a firearm as a result of a 2012 conviction for armed robbery with a firearm.

At sentencing, Judge Peterson stated that an aggravating factor in this case was that Nellem committed the offense while under supervision. Judge Petersen also stated that while the defendant had the potential to succeed, his criminal history also demonstrated a potential for violence.

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 involves collaboration by federal, state, and local law enforcement agencies, prosecutors, and communities to prevent and deter gun violence.

The charge against Nellem was the result of an investigation conducted by the La Crosse Police Department and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. Assistant U.S. Attorney Taylor L. Kraus prosecuted this case.

St. Paul Field Division