U.S. Department of Justice
United States Attorney
District of New Mexico
201 3rd Street NW
Albuquerque, New Mexico 87102
For Immediate Release
November 3, 2010
Kenneth J. Gonzales, United States Attorney
Contact: Elizabeth M. Martinez, Assistant U.S. Attorney, Public Affairs Officer
Rio Rancho Man Convicted of Federal Firearms Charge
United States Attorney Kenneth J. Gonzales announced that, today, a federal jury in Albuquerque convicted Daniel F. Mills, 29, of Rio Rancho, of being a convicted felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition after a three-day trial before Senior United States District Judge James A. Parker. The indictment, which was filed in September 2009, charged Mills was possession of a firearm and ammunition on June 4, 2009. According to the indictment, on June 4, 2009, Mills previously had been convicted of two felonies in the Second Judicial District Court of the State of New Mexico: (1) aggravated assault upon a peace officer, and (2) attempted aggravated assault against a household member.
The evidence at trial established that, on June 3, 2009, the Albuquerque Police Department (APD) received a call reporting that the drivers of two vehicles, a black Chevrolet Caprice registered to Mills and a white Cadillac Escalade, were armed. On the following day, June 4, 2009, an APD officer who was on patrol observed the two vehicles parked in the vicinity of the intersection of Lomas Blvd. and Louisiana Blvd., and noted that the occupants of the vehicles appeared to be engaged in drug trafficking activity. After the vehicles departed from the area, APD officers stopped the Caprice and determined that Mills was its driver. In response to questioning by an APD officer, Mills admitted that he had a gun in his computer bag and that he was a convicted felon. After obtaining Mills’ consent to search the computer bag, the officer recovered a .40 caliber pistol and ammunition from the bag.
The jury returned a guilty verdict after a three-hour deliberation. At sentencing, which has yet to be scheduled, Mills faces up to 10 years imprisonment, a maximum $250,000 fine, and up to three years supervised release.
United States Attorney Gonzales thanked the Albuquerque Police Department and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives for investigating the case, and commended Assistant United States Attorneys Louis E. Valencia and David M. Walsh, who prosecuted the case.