Mitchell man sentenced to probation for federal firearm charge

U.S. District Court Sioux Falls.jpg
The District of South Dakota's Southern Division handles cases out of the United States Court House in Sioux Falls. (Ellen Bardash / Republic)

A Mitchell man has been sentenced to five years probation for illegally being in possession of a firearm.

Matthew Sweeney, 36, received the probation sentence and a special assessment to the Federal Crime Victims Fund of $100, according to the U.S. Attorney's Office. U.S. District Judge Karen Schreier issued the sentence on Oct. 19, after Sweeney had pleaded guilty in July.

According to prosecutors, the conviction stemmed from an incident on or about September 7, 2019, when the Mitchell Police Division conducted a traffic stop on Sweeney’s vehicle. Sweeney was subsequently arrested and his vehicle searched. Law enforcement found a handgun with an obliterated number, ammunition, as well as drug and drug-related items. At the time of his arrest, Sweeney was the subject of a valid protection order which prohibited him from using or attempting to use force against another person.

ATF examined the firearm and concluded it was manufactured at a facility outside of South Dakota and, thus, transported across state lines. Sweeney was indicted by a federal grand jury on Dec. 9, 2019.

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