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Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
District of South Dakota
For Immediate Release
Alison J. Ramsdell, United States Attorney
Thursday, September 21, 2023

Rapid City Man Sentenced for Illegal Possession of Firearms

RAPID CITY S.D. - United States Attorney Alison J. Ramsdell announced today that Chief Judge Roberto A. Lange, U.S. District Court, has sentenced a Rapid City, South Dakota, man convicted of Possession of Firearm by a Prohibited Person, Use of a Firearm During and in Relation to a Drug Trafficking Crime, and two counts of False Statement During Purchase of a Firearm. The sentencing took place on September 1, 2023.

Harold Salway, 24, was sentenced to 10 years in federal prison, followed by five years of supervised release, and ordered to pay a $400 special assessment to the Federal Crime Victims Fund. Salway was indicted for Possession of a Firearm by a Prohibited Person, Conspiracy to Distribute a Controlled Substance, Use of a Firearm During and in Relation to a Crime of Violence, and False Statement During Purchase of a Firearm by a federal grand jury in September of 2022. He pleaded guilty on June 16, 2023.

In June of 2022, at Rapid City, Salway, being an unlawful user of a controlled substance, knowingly possessed multiple firearms which were found after Salway came into contact with law enforcement. Salway also made false statements about his drug usage while purchasing firearms between January of 2021 and March of 2022. Between January of 2021 and March of 2022, Salway purchased at least 43 firearms, which he then traded for drugs or sold or provided to them to others who were prohibited from possessing them.

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.

This case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Rapid City Police Department. Assistant U.S. Attorney Benjamin Patterson prosecuted the case.

Salway was immediately remanded to the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service.


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