Henderson Man Matthew Thomas Indicted by Federal Grand Jury for Possessing a Firearm

Henderson Man Matthew Thomas Indicted by Federal Grand Jury for Possessing a Firearm After Mental Health Adjudication

(STL.News) – United States Attorney Robert J. Higdon, Jr. announces that a federal grand jury sitting in Raleigh indicted Matthew Scott Thomas, 34, of Henderson for possessing a firearm after having been adjudicated mentally defective and committed to a mental institution and for making a false statement during the transfer of firearms.

The indictment alleges that on January 26, 2018, THOMAS made false statements on a Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (ATF) form during the attempted transfer of firearms.  Specifically, THOMAS is alleged to have falsely indicated that he had never been adjudicated mentally defective and not committed to a mental institution, when in fact he had.  Additionally, the indictment alleges that on December 4, 2019, THOMAS possessed a firearm after having been so adjudicated.  If convicted, he faces up to ten years imprisonment and three years of supervised release on each count.

The charges and allegations contained in the Indictment are merely accusations.  The defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty in a court of law.

This case is part of Project Guardian, the Department of Justice’s signature initiative to reduce gun violence and enforce federal firearms laws.  Initiated by the Attorney General in the fall of 2019, Project Guardian draws upon the Department’s past successful programs to reduce gun violence; enhances coordination of federal, state, local, and tribal authorities in investigating and prosecuting gun crimes; improves information-sharing by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives when a prohibited individual attempts to purchase a firearm and is denied by the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS), to include taking appropriate actions when a prospective purchaser is denied by the NICS for mental health reasons; and ensures that federal resources are directed at the criminals posing the greatest threat to our communities.