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Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives

District of Minnesota

For Immediate Release

September 14, 2012

B. Todd Jones, United States Attorney

Contact: Jeanne F. Cooney

Federal Jury Finds St. Cloud Felon Guilty of Possessing a .32-caliber Pistol

MINNEAPOLIS –Earlier this afternoon, a federal court jury found a 33-year-old St. Cloud felon guilty of possessing a .32-caliber pistol. Following a two-day trial, the jury convicted Bryant Duane Griffin of one count of being a felon in possession of a firearm. Griffin was indicted on May 15, 2012.

The evidence presented at trial proved that on March 25, 2012, Griffin possessed the gun while on a Metro Transit bus. On that date, police received a call at approximately 1:00 a.m. The caller reported that a man in possession of a gun was riding a city bus. Officers located the bus and the man. He was later identified as Griffin. They found the gun under a seat in front of him.

Because he is a felon, Griffin is prohibited under federal law from possessing a firearm at any time. His prior Hennepin County convictions include fifth-degree possession of a controlled substance (1999) and attempted terroristic threats (2001). In addition, he was convicted of second-degree sale of a controlled substance in Stearns County (2008) and third-degree sale of a controlled substance in Benton County (2008). Since all of those prior offenses were crimes of violence or major drug crimes, Griffin is now subject to the federal Armed Career Criminal Act. That act mandates a minimum of 15 years in federal prison. United States District Court Judge Joan N. Ericksen will determine his actual sentence at a future hearing, not yet scheduled.

This case was the result of an investigation by the Brooklyn Park Police Department, the Metro Transit Police Department, and the U.S. ATF. It was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys John E. Kokkinen, Kimberly A. Svendsen, and Surya Saxena.

Note, this case was part of Project Safe Neighborhoods ("PSN"), a comprehensive, strategic approach to reducing gun crime in America. PSN, launched by the U.S. Department of Justice in 2001, encourages cooperative, multi-jurisdictional law enforcement and crime prevention efforts.