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Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
District of Montana
Jesse Laslovich, United States Attorney
For Immediate Release
Wednesday, January 10, 2024

Illegal Possession of Firearm Sends Billings Felon to Prison for 16 Months

BILLINGS, Mont. — A Billings felon who admitted to illegally possessing a rifle after fleeing law enforcement was sentenced today to 16 months in prison, to be followed by three years of supervised release, U.S. Attorney Jesse Laslovich said.

Devin Miranda American Horse, 34, pleaded guilty in August 2023 to prohibited person in possession of a firearm.

U.S. District Judge Susan P. Watters presided.

The government alleged in court documents that in February 2023, while conducting routine night patrol, a Billings police officer saw four or five people sitting in a car outside of a residence. Before the officer made any contact, the driver got out and fled. The officer chased but did not catch the driver. As he ran by the car, the officer recognized American Horse as the front seat passenger. The car fled the scene and was stopped a short time later. The only remaining occupant, who was the owner and now driver, told officers that American Horse had fled with a rifle. Police found American Horse hiding in some bushes and a rifle nearby. American Horse was arrested on a parole violation for a 2019 felony drug conviction in Yellowstone County. She was prohibited from possessing firearms.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Lori Harper Suek prosecuted the case. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Billings Police Department conducted the investigation.

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 of Justice 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.


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