Iowa Man Michael Wayne Holton Sentenced to Federal Prison for Illegal Possession of Firearm

(STL.News) – A man who illegally possessed a firearm was sentenced May 20, 2020, to 8 years in federal prison.

Michael Wayne Holton, 33, from Mason City, Iowa, received the prison term after a January 9, 2020, guilty plea to possession of a firearm by a felon .  Holton was previously convicted of contraband in a correctional facility and domestic abuse assault, both in the Iowa District Court for Cerro Gordo County.

Evidence at the plea and sentencing hearings showed Holton admitted that on June 22, 2019, he grabbed a gun, a Taurus 9mm, from another person while outside of Kingz Lounge in Fort Dodge, Iowa and shot the gun multiple times near a crowd of people.

Holton was sentenced in Sioux City by United States District Court Chief Judge Leonard T. Strand.  Holton was sentenced to 96 months’ imprisonment.  He must also serve a 3-year term of supervised release after the prison term.  There is no parole in the federal system.

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN).  PSN is the centerpiece of the Department of Justice’s violent crime reduction efforts.  PSN is an evidence-based program proven to be effective at reducing violent crime.  Through PSN, a broad spectrum of stakeholders work together to identify the most pressing violent crime problems in the community and develop comprehensive solutions to address them.  As part of this strategy, PSN focuses enforcement efforts on the most violent offenders and partners with locally based prevention and reentry programs for lasting reductions in crime.

This case is also 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.