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‘Straw purchase’ of a firearm nets Peoria man 9 months in prison

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court gavel(USAF / Joshua Magbanua)
Published: May. 26, 2022 at 5:24 PM CDT
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PEORIA (WEEK) - A Peoria man has been sentenced to nine months in prison - followed by three years of supervised release - for making a false statement during the purchase of a firearm.

At the sentencing hearing for Dontarius S. Dixon, 29, of the 2800 block of West Larchmont Lane, the government presented evidence that Dixon falsified documents by stating that he was the actual buyer of a firearm when in fact he was buying the Glock model 19x 9mm for a convicted felon.

According to a release, the felon, an acquaintance of Dixon’s, approached Dixon and asked him to make the purchase because Dixon had a valid Illinois Firearm Owner’s Identification Card.

Dixon was told which handgun to buy and was provided with $1,200 to purchase both the gun for his friend and one for himself.  Dixon purchased the Glock 19x, as well as a Glock 43x 9mm for himself, from The Tac Shack, a Federal Firearms Licensee (FFL), on September 3, 2020.

He took possession of the guns on September 11, 2020, and delivered the Glock 19x over to the felon, a documented street gang member, the same day.

The very next day, September 12, 2020, Peoria Police recovered the Glock 19x from a vehicle outside the Dream Night Club in Peoria, Illinois. The handgun was in possession of the documented street gang member and was accompanied by an extended magazine, several additional magazines, ammunition, and a speed loader.

The government further established that on September 28, 2020, Peoria Police were called to West Farmington Road in Peoria, in response to a shooting. Police then located Dixon who reported that he was shot by a male who fled on foot.

During a later interview on October 7, 2020, Dixon admitted to agents of the ATF that he had lied to police about the shooting and, in fact, had accidentally shot himself in the leg with Glock 43x that he purchased, then threw the gun in a bush off Farmington Road. The firearm was later recovered by the ATF.

Also at the hearing, U.S. District Judge James Shadid found Dixon had put others at great risk by putting guns in the hands of individuals who couldn’t lawfully possess them. Judge Shadid emphasized that straw purchasers have no control over how the guns are used once they leave their hands, and in Dixon’s case, the gun was found in a car outside a nightclub with ammunition and an extended magazine within a day of purchase.

The statutory penalties for making a false statement during the purchase of a firearm are no more than 10 years imprisonment, followed by up to 3 years supervised release and up to a $250,000 fine.

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