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Shore Man Charged for Possessing Fully Automatic “Machine Gun” During Apartment Complex Argument

TRENTON, N.J. – A Monmouth County, New Jersey, man will have his initial appearance today for possessing a machine gun as a previously convicted felon, U.S. Attorney Craig Carpenito announced.

Davon Harley, 30, of Neptune City, New Jersey, appeared by video conference this afternoon before U.S. Magistrate Judge Zahid M. Quraishi and was detained without bail. Harley was arrested by local authorities on Feb. 8, 2020, and charged with state offenses. He is now charged by federal criminal complaint with one count of being a convicted felon in possession of a firearm and one count of possession of a machinegun.

According to documents filed in this case and statements made in court:

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In February 2020 a Neptune City Police officer confronted Harley, a previously convicted felon, who was arguing with others in the yard of an apartment complex. Harley fled through the apartment complex into neighboring properties and discarded a handgun that, upon inspection, had been altered to fire exclusively in fully automatic mode. The weapon had a magazine capable of holding 31 rounds of ammunition. Members of law enforcement, assisted by the Neptune Township and Asbury Park police departments located Harley and recovered the machine gun and the magazine that Harley had discarded.

The felon in possession of a firearm and possession of a machine gun charges each carry a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000.

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U.S. Attorney Carpenito credited special agents of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, Newark Division, Trenton Field Office, under the direction of Special Agent in Charge Charlie J. Patterson; officers of the Neptune City Police Department, under the direction of Police Director Matthew Quagliato; officers of the Neptune Township Police Department, under the direction of Chief of Police James M. Hunt Jr.; officers of the Asbury Park Police Department, under the direction of Chief of Police David Kelso; officers of the Monmouth County Sheriff’s Office, under the direction of Sheriff Shaun Golden; and detectives of the Monmouth County Prosecutor’s Office, under the direction of Prosecutor Christopher  J. Gramiccioni, with the investigation leading to the charges. This case was brought as part of Project Stop the Violence, a comprehensive strategy to combat gun crimes in Monmouth County.

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The government is represented by Special Assistant U.S. Attorney Christopher Matthews of the U.S. Attorney’s Office’s Criminal Division in Trenton.

The charges and allegations contained in the complaint are merely accusations, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

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