Raytown MO Man, James E. Hawkins Convicted of Illegal Firearm

KANSAS CITY, MO (STL.News) A Raytown, Missouri, man was convicted in a bench trial today of illegally possessing a sawed-off shotgun that he sold to an undercover federal agent.

James E. Hawkins, 36, was found guilty by U.S. District Judge Roseann Ketchmark of being a felon in possession of a firearm and of possessing an unregistered firearm.

According to evidence introduced during the bench trial, Hawkins was in possession of a Remington 12-gauge shotgun on Jan. 12, 2018.  The sawed-off shotgun had a barrel of less than 18 inches in length, which Hawkins was not registered to possess.  Hawkins sold the shotgun to an undercover special agent with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives for $260.  Hawkins told the undercover agent that he used a hacksaw to shorten the barrel himself.

Under federal law, it is illegal for anyone who has been convicted of a felony to be in possession of a firearm or ammunition.  Hawkins was on probation at the time of the offense following his state felony conviction for being a felon in possession of a firearm.

Under federal statutes, Hawkins is subject to a sentence of up to 10 years in federal prison without parole on each of the two counts.  The maximum statutory sentence is prescribed by Congress and is provided here for informational purposes, as the sentencing of the defendant will be determined by the court based on the advisory sentencing guidelines and other statutory factors.  A sentencing hearing will be scheduled after the completion of a presentence investigation by the United States Probation Office.