For Immediate Release
Philadelphia Man, Previously Convicted of a Felony, Sentenced to 15 Years for Illegally Possessing a Firearm
Video of the defendant brandishing the firearm was posted to social media
PHILADELPHIA – Acting United States Attorney Jennifer Arbittier Williams announced that Jesse Golden, 30, of Philadelphia, PA, was sentenced to fifteen years in prison and three years of supervised release by United States District Court Judge Gerald J. Pappert. The defendant was convicted of illegally possessing a firearm and ammunition as a convicted felon after a three-day trial in May 2021.
In May 2019, a Philadelphia Police officer saw a video on the social media platform Instagram in which the defendant was sitting in a car with another individual and brandishing a distinctive painted-black revolver. Investigators determined that Golden had multiple prior felony convictions, so they obtained a search warrant for the defendant’s residence. During the execution of that warrant, investigators found an unloaded revolver and 100 rounds of ammunition the same caliber as the firearm. The revolver they found matched the look (including the paint job) of the firearm in the Instagram video. Evidence presented at trial showed that testing performed on the gun found DNA that matched the defendant’s DNA.
“The crime of being a felon in possession of a firearm is a serious offense, particularly in a city like Philadelphia, where gun violence is prevalent,” said Acting U.S. Attorney Williams. “The sentence handed down by the Court today reflects the seriousness of Golden’s crimes, and should serve as a deterrent to others engaged in the same conduct. Our Office is determined to continue doing everything we can to reduce gun violence in Philadelphia by being ‘All Hands On Deck’ to get criminals like Golden off the streets for a long, long time.”
This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. The Department of Justice reinvigorated PSN in 2017 as part of the Department’s renewed focus on targeting violent criminals, directing all U.S. Attorney’s Offices to work in partnership with federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement and the local community to develop effective, locally-based strategies to reduce violent crime.
The case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Philadelphia Police Department, and is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney David Ignall.