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Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
District of Connecticut
Vanessa Roberts Avery, United States Attorney
For Immediate Release
Wednesday, February 28, 2024

Federal Jury Finds Hartford Felon Guilty of Possessing Loaded Handgun

HARTFORD, Conn — Vanessa Roberts Avery, U.S. Attorney for the District of Connecticut, James Ferguson, Special Agent in Charge, Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, Boston Field Division, and Hartford Police Chief Jason Thody today announced that a federal jury in Bridgeport has found Christopher Gaskins, 47, of Hartford, guilty of a firearm possession offense.

According to the evidence presented during the trial, in the afternoon of January 1, 2022, Hartford Police officers stopped a car Gaskin was operating on Irving Street in Hartford. Gaskin was arrested after a search of his person revealed a loaded .380 caliber handgun, a bag containing approximately five grams of crack cocaine, and 35 vials of crack.

Gaskin’s criminal history includes several felony convictions, including convictions for assault, robbery and witness tampering offenses. It is a violation of federal law for a person previously convicted of a felony offense to possess a firearm or ammunition that has moved in interstate or foreign commerce.

The trial began on February 26, and the jury found Gaskin guilty of unlawful possession of a firearm by a felon, and not guilty of possession with intent to distribute cocaine base (“crack”).

Judge Underhill scheduled sentencing for May 22, at which time Gaskin faces a maximum term of imprisonment of 10 years. Gaskin is detained pending sentencing.

This matter has been investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) and the Hartford Police Department. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Angel M. Krull and Patricia Stolfi Collins through 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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