For Immediate Release
St. Joseph Man Charged with Illegally Possessing 15 Firearms
KANSAS CITY, Mo. – A St. Joseph, Missouri, man has been charged in federal court with illegally possessing 15 firearms.
Bryan R. Harshman, 39, was charged in a criminal complaint filed in the U.S. District Court in Kansas City, Missouri, on Thursday, Sept. 12, with being a felon in possession of firearms. Harshman remains in federal custody pending a detention hearing.
According to an affidavit filed in support of the federal criminal complaint, law enforcement officers with the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Buchanan County, Mo., Sheriff’s Department, and the St. Joseph, Mo., Police Department, executed a search warrant at Harshman’s residence on Wednesday, Sept. 11. They seized a Mitchell 12-gauge shotgun, a Mossberg .22-caliber semi-automatic pistol, a Mossberg 12-gauge shotgun, a Noble Manufacturing 410-gauge shotgun, a New England Firearms 20-gauge sawed-off shotgun (all concealed in the wall of the second-floor porch), a loaded Mitchell 12-gauge shotgun, a Ruger .22-caliber rifle, a Marlin 12-gauge shotgun, a Jimenez Arms .22-caliber semi-automatic pistol, a Springfield 40 S&W caliber semi-automatic pistol, a Sears & Roebuck 12-gauge shotgun with an extra barrel, a Remington 12-gauge shotgun, and a sawed-off Mossberg 12-gauge shotgun with a defaced serial number.
In a second-floor office located near the firearms, the affidavit says, officers observed items used in the packaging and distribution of methamphetamine, including digital scales and baggies. Two of the bowls used to weigh substances on the digital scale field-tested positive for methamphetamine.
While officers searched Harshman’s residence, additional officers located Harshman at a local Waffle House and he was taken into custody. Officers also searched the Chevrolet SUV being rented by Harshman, which was in the parking lot. Officers found a loaded Glock .40-caliber semi-automatic pistol, a loaded Smith and Wesson .38 Special revolver, and a solvent trap that had been drilled and was open at both ends, apparently modified to be used as a suppressor, inside the vehicle.
Under federal law, it is illegal for anyone who has been convicted of a felony to be in possession of any firearm or ammunition. Harshman has a prior felony conviction for distributing a controlled substance.
The charge contained in this complaint is simply an accusation, and not evidence of guilt. Evidence supporting the charge must be presented to a federal trial jury, whose duty is to determine guilt or innocence.
This case is being prosecuted by Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert Smith. It was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the Drug Enforcement Administration, the Buchanan County, Mo., Sheriff’s Department, and the St. Joseph, Mo., Police Department.
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.