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Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
Middle District of Florida
For Immediate Release
Roger B. Handberg, United States Attorney
Thursday, June 29, 2023

Multi-Convicted Felon Pleads Guilty to Possessing Firearm

Tampa, Florida – United States Attorney Roger B. Handberg announces that Terrence Thompson (42, Sarasota) has pleaded guilty to possessing a firearm as a convicted felon. Thompson faces a maximum penalty of 15 years in federal prison. A sentencing date has not yet been set.

According to court documents, on December 9, 2022, deputies from the Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office (“SCSO”) received a 911 call about a disturbance involving Thompson at a residence in the area of Lalani Boulevard and Bee Ridge Road in Sarasota. The SCSO Aviation Unit tracked Thompson from the residence and with its infrared camera recorded Thompson stopping his vehicle and throwing a small pistol-shaped object in the bushes near Crescent Ridge Road and Bee Ridge Road. SCSO deputies searched the area and recovered the loaded Bersa Thunder 380 pistol that Thompson had discarded.

Thompson was arrested a short time later. During an interview with ATF agents, Thompson admitted to being a convicted felon and possessing the pistol. He further admitted to discarding the pistol when the helicopter spotted him. As a convicted felon Thompson is prohibited from possessing firearms or ammunition under federal law.

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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 Sarasota County Sheriff’s Office and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. It is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney David W.A. Chee.

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