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Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
Northern District of Alabama
For Immediate Release
Prim F. Escalona, United States Attorney
www.justice.gov/usao-ndal
Friday, June 16, 2023

Armed Career Criminal Sentenced to 19 Years in Prison for Illegal Firearm Possession

BIRMINGHAM, Ala. – A federal judge yesterday sentenced an armed career criminal for illegal possession of a firearm, announced U.S. Attorney Prim F. Escalona and Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives Special Agent in Charge Marcus Watson.

U.S. District Court Judge Corey L. Maze sentenced William Wayne Osbourn, 38 of Sylacauga, to 228 months in prison. Osbourn pleaded guilty on March 17, 2023, to unlawfully possessing a Smith & Wesson magnum revolver in October 2021 in Talladega County. Osbourn is prohibited from having a firearm because of multiple prior felony convictions and the sentence pronounced yesterday reflected his status as an Armed Career Criminal. Osbourn was previously convicted on January 25, 2011, in the Circuit Court of Talladega County, Alabama, of the offense of Receiving Stolen Property, First Degree; convicted on March 6, 2012, in the Circuit Court of Talladega County, Alabama, of the offense of Attempted Unlawful Manufacturing of a Controlled Substance, Second Degree; convicted on February 11, 2014, in the Circuit Court of Talladega County, Alabama, of the offense of Unlawful Manufacturing of a Controlled Substance, First Degree; and convicted on September 21, 2015, in the Circuit Court of Calhoun County, Alabama, of the offense of Robbery, First Degree.

“Prosecuting career criminals who possess firearms is an important part of reducing violent crime in this district,” said U.S. Attorney Escalona. “We are grateful for the investigation by the Sylacauga Police Department, Alabama Law Enforcement Agency, and the ATF in bringing this defendant to justice.”

“Today’s announcement is a perfect answer to why we chose to protect and serve the public. Illegal firearm possession and narcotic distribution in our communities is dangerous and damaging to everyone involved in the criminal activity,” said SAC Watson. “ATF will remain in lockstep with our local, state and federal partners in our continuing effort to combat violent crime and maintain public safety.”

The ATF investigated the case along with the Alabama Law Enforcement Agency and the Sylacauga Police Department. Assistant U.S. Attorneys Daniel McBrayer and Brittney Plyler prosecuted the case.

This case is a part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), the centerpiece of the Department of Justice’s violent crime reduction efforts. PSN is an evidence-based program proven to be effective at reducing violent crime. Through PSN, a broad spectrum of stakeholders work together to identify the most pressing violent crime problems in the community and develop comprehensive solutions to address them. As part of this strategy, PSN focuses enforcement efforts on the most violent offenders and partners with locally based prevention and reentry programs for lasting reductions in crime.

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