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Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
District of Minnesota
Andrew M. Luger, United States Attorney
For Immediate Release
Thursday, March 28, 2024

St. Paul Man Pleads Guilty to Illegal Possession of a Machine Gun, Crashed Stolen Vehicle Through a Restaurant During Police Chase

MINNEAPOLIS – A St. Paul man has pleaded guilty to illegal possession of a machine gun following a shooting incident that ended with the defendant crashing the stolen vehicle he was driving through an unoccupied restaurant, announced United States Attorney Andrew M. Luger.

According to court documents, on the afternoon of February 15, 2023, officers with the St. Paul Police Department responded to a shots-fired 911 call in the area of Luella Street North and Wilson Avenue. Witnesses reported hearing automatic gunfire coming from a black Jeep traveling westbound on Wilson Avenue that was apparently chasing another Jeep. Within a few blocks of the area, officers located a black Jeep with a rear window that appeared to have been shot up. When officers turned around in their squad car to follow the Jeep, it led officers on a high-speed chase until it eventually hit another vehicle and crashed through the Ox Cart Ale House restaurant in St. Paul, which was unoccupied at the time. Officers saw Moeshea Isiah Hart, 19, exit the Jeep and detained him. On the floor of the restaurant, near the Jeep’s driver’s side door, officers recovered a loaded Glock model 45 9mm pistol with an inserted high-capacity magazine and an attached switch, a conversion device that turns a handgun into a fully automatic machine gun. Approximately 11 9mm discharged cartridge casings were located in and around the driver’s area of the Jeep, including one outside the Jeep on the floor of the restaurant. Police later determined that the Jeep had been reported stolen from St. Paul in December 2022.

Hart pleaded guilty yesterday in U.S. District Court before Judge Jerry W. Blackwell to one count of possession of a machine gun. A sentencing hearing will be scheduled at a later time.

This case is the result of an investigation conducted by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the St. Paul Police Department, and the Minnesota Bureau of Criminal Apprehension.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Benjamin Bejar is prosecuting the case.


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