Rupert Man Convicted of Unlawful Possession of a Firearm

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FILE PHOTO: The U.S. Department of Justice Building is pictured

POCATELLO – Ryan Arthur Burton, 43, of Rupert was sentenced to 13 months in federal prison for unlawful possession of a firearm, U.S. Attorney Josh Hurwit announced today.

According to court records, Burton was arrested April 10, 2021, after deputies with the Cassia County Sheriff’s Office responded to a report of a possible domestic violence incident in the City of Burley. Deputies contacted the Defendant and found that he was in possession of a loaded firearm. Defendant was prohibited from possessing firearms due to a prior felony conviction. Defendant was originally indicted by a federal grand jury in June of 2021. Defendant entered a guilty plea on May 5, 2022.

Burton was sentenced by the Honorable B. Lynn Winmill, District Court Judge, to federal prison on September 14, 2022 and was ordered to complete three years of supervised release after his prison sentence is finished.

U.S. Attorney Hurwit, of the District of Idaho made the announcement and commended the cooperative efforts of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and Cassia County Sheriff’s Office, which led to charges.

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and gun violence, and to make our neighborhoods safer for everyone. On May 26, 2021, the Department launched a violent crime reduction strategy strengthening PSN based on these core principles: fostering trust and legitimacy in our communities, supporting community-based organizations that help prevent violence from occurring in the first place, setting focused and strategic enforcement priorities, andmeasuring the results.

This case was handled by the U.S. Attorney Office’s specially deputized Special Assistant U.S. Attorney (SAUSA), funded by the Eastern Idaho Partnership (EIP) and the State of Idaho. The EIP is a coalition of local city and county officials in eastern Idaho as well as the Idaho Department of Correction.

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The EIP SAUSA program allows law enforcement to utilize the federal criminal justice system – through the EIP SAUSA – to prosecute, convict, and sentence violent, armed criminals and drug traffickers. These criminals often receive stiffer penalties than they might in state courts.

This program was created in January 2016. Since that time, approximately 199 defendants have been indicted by the EIP SAUSA. Of these defendants, 26 have been indicted for unlawful possession of a firearm. The defendants indicted under the program have been sentenced to 8,650 months (approximately 721 years) in federal prison, representing an average prison sentence of 53.7 months (4.47 years). Defendants indicted for unlawfully possessing a firearm serve, on average, approximately 40.7 months (3.4 years) in federal prison.

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