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Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives

For Immediate Release

October 19, 2010

B. Todd Jones, United States Attorney

Contact: Jeanne F. Cooney
Director of Community Relations
(612) 664-5611

Minneapolis Man Indicted in Federal Court as a Result of Project Exile Minneapolis

Another individual has been federally indicted as a result of the Project Exile Minneapolis initiative. The indictment, which was filed earlier today in Minneapolis, charges Jeff Parker, age 38, of Minneapolis, with being a career criminal in possession of a firearm.

Because Parker is a convicted felon, he is prohibited from possessing a firearm at any time. Nonetheless, on February 24, 2010, he was alleged to have possessed a 12-gauge shotgun.

Parker’s past convictions include third-degree assault in 1997, fleeing a peace officer in a motor vehicle in 1998, first-degree burglary and third-degree assault in 2001, and second-degree attempted sale of a controlled substance in 2007. All of those cases were prosecuted through Hennepin County state court. In addition, he was convicted of armed robbery in Illinois in 1991. Since at least three of Parker’s past felony convictions are for crimes of violence or serious drug offenses, he is now being prosecuted as a federal armed career criminal. Accordingly, if he is convicted of possessing a firearm on February 24, he will face a mandatory minimum sentence of 15 years in federal prison. All sentences, of course, will be determined by a federal district court judge.

Project Exile Minneapolis is a law enforcement initiative, launched on July 22, 2010, as part of a City-wide effort to reduce gun violence by removing the worst of the worst criminals from our streets. Through Project Exile, the Minneapolis Police Department and the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives work together to apprehend serial criminals who violate gun laws. Then, the Hennepin County Attorney’s Office teams up with the U.S. Attorney’s Office to determine where those offenders will most effectively be prosecuted–State or federal court. Those determinations are based on the offenders’ criminal histories and current charges, among other factors.

Presently, a number of other Project Exile Minneapolis cases are being prepared for federal charges. Moreover, County and federal prosecutors continue to review all Minneapolis gun cases on a regular basis.

The Parker case is the result of an investigation by the Hennepin County Sheriff’s Office, the Hennepin County Probation Office, and the United States Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. It is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Andrew R. Winter.

An indictment is a determination by a grand jury that there is probable cause to believe that offenses have beencommitted by a defendant. A defendant, of course, is presumed innocent until he or she pleads guilty or is provenguilty at trial.