Sample Block

Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives

Northern District of Iowa

For Immediate Release

August 3, 2011

Stephanie M. Rose, United States Attorney

Contact: Tim T. Duax, Director of Community Relations
(712) 255-6011

Previously Convicted Domestic Abuser Faces Federal Gun and Drug Charges

Isaiah Earl Thomas, age 26, from Sioux City, Iowa, has been charged with one count of conspiracy to distribute marijuana, one count of possessing a firearm in furtherance of a drug trafficking crime, and one count of being a domestic abuse misdemeanant in possession of a firearm. The charges are contained in an Indictment filed on June 22, 2011, in United States District Court in Sioux City, Iowa.

The Indictment alleges that, from about January 1, 2010 and continuing through about February 23, 2011, Thomas was involved in a conspiracy to distribute marijuana and possessed two handguns in furtherance of that conspiracy. The Indictment also alleges Thomas’ possession of the two firearms – after he had been convicted of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence – was an additional federal crime.

Under federal law, it is illegal for someone who has been convicted of a misdemeanor crime of domestic violence to possess a firearm or ammunition. The State of Iowa enacted a similar law which took effect on July 1, 2010.

If convicted on all charges, Thomas faces a mandatory minimum sentence of five years’ imprisonment and a possible maximum sentence of life in prison, $750,000 in fines, $300 in special assessments, and 10 years of supervised release following any term of imprisonment.

Thomas appeared on August 3, 2011, in federal court in Sioux City and was held without bond. Thomas’s next appearance will be his trial, and it is set for October 3, 2011.

As with any criminal case, a charge is merely an accusation, and a defendant is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

The case is being prosecuted as part of Project Safe Neighborhoods, a cooperative local, state, and federal program aimed at the enhanced prosecution of gun crimes. The case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives and the Sioux City Police Department. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Forde Fairchild.

Court file information is available at The case file number is 11–4074.