U.S. Attorney's Office
District of North Dakota
(701) 297-7400
October 20, 2014

New Mexico Woman Sentenced for Possession of a Firearm and Ammunition

BISMARCK, ND—U.S. Attorney Timothy Q. Purdon announced that on October 20, 2014, April Marie Lacey, 32, Las Cruces, NM, was sentenced before U.S. District Judge Daniel L. Hovland to serve 10 years in prison for and possession of a firearm and ammunition by a convicted felon.

On September 14, 2013, a Montana Highway Patrol officer attempted to stop a car driven by Christopher Russell near Fairview, Montana. Russell refused to stop and a chase commenced which ended in North Dakota. McKenzie County law enforcement officials were able to apprehend Russell on Highway 85 near Arnegard, ND. Lacey was the lone passenger in the car. After stopping and arresting the two, officers found approximately two ounces of methamphetamine and a .380 caliber pistol in the car. Evidence revealed that the couple was traveling to the New Town, ND area to distribute the methamphetamine. Lacey was prohibited from legally possessing a firearm due to four felony convictions, including 2005 New Mexico convictions for armed robbery with a deadly weapon and a 2013 Washington conviction for third degree assault.

Judge Hovland also ordered that Lacey serve three years of supervised release and was ordered to pay a $100 pecial assessment to the Crime Victims Fund.

On September 8, 2014, Russell, 34, of Tacoma, WA, was sentenced before U.S. District Judge Daniel L. Hovland to serve 20 years in prison for possession with intent to distribute a controlled substance and possession of a firearm and ammunition by a convicted felon. Russell was prohibited from legally possessing a firearm due to four felony convictions, including a 2006 Missouri conviction for delivery of a controlled substance.

The case was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives, Northwest Narcotics Task Force, McKenzie County Sheriff’s Office, Federal Bureau of Investigation, and the Montana Highway Patrol.

Assistant U.S. Attorney David D Hagler prosecuted the case.

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