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Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
Middle District of Florida
Roger B. Handberg, United States Attorney
For Immediate Release
Friday, September 16, 2022

Bradenton Felon Sentenced to Federal Prison for Unlawfully Possessing a Firearm and Ammunition

Fort Myers, Florida – U.S. District Judge Thomas Barber today sentenced Robert Reese Lyons (24, Bradenton) to 3 years and 10 months in federal prison for possessing a firearm and ammunition as a convicted felon. The court also ordered Lyons to forfeit the firearm and ammunition used in the offense. Lyons had pleaded guilty on June 8, 2022.

According to court documents, at approximately 2:15 a.m. on January 16, 2021, near the Miromar Outlets in Estero, deputies from the Lee County Sheriff’s Office stopped a vehicle in which Lyons was the front-seat passenger. During a search of the vehicle, the deputies recovered a loaded Smith and Wesson handgun, with an obliterated serial number, directly underneath Lyons’s seat. At the time, Lyons was a convicted felon and a state probationer who had an active warrant for his arrest. As a convicted felon, Lyons is prohibited from possessing a firearm or ammunition under federal law.

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 gun violence, and to make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. On May 26, 2021, the Department launched a violent crime reduction strategy strengthening PSN based on these core principles: fostering trust and legitimacy in our communities, supporting community-based organizations that help prevent violence from occurring in the first place, setting focused and strategic enforcement priorities, and measuring the results.

This case was investigated by the Lee County Sheriff’s Office, the Manatee County Sheriff’s Office, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. It was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Simon R. Eth.

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