General · January 29, 2021

Joseph Taylor Pleads Guilty to Possession of a Firearm

Manchester Man, Joseph Taylor Pleads Guilty to Possession of a Firearm and Ammunition by a Convicted Felon

CONCORD (STL.News) Joseph Taylor, 31, of Manchester, pleaded guilty in federal court on Thursday to possession of a firearm and ammunition by a convicted felon, United States Attorney Scott W. Murray announced today.

According to court documents and statements made in court, on March 9, 2020, Manchester police officers stopped a car operated by Taylor after observing suspected drug activity and a motor vehicle violation.  Taylor agreed to speak with the detectives outside the car.  The detectives asked Taylor if he had anything illegal on him and he said he did not.  After he consented to a search of his person and car, detectives found over $1,800 and a loaded 9mm handgun hidden in an area behind the glove compartment.  Detectives later learned the firearm was stolen.

Taylor admitted he was a convicted felon and that he had the firearm for protection.  He explained it was hidden because he knew he could not possess a firearm as a convicted felon.

Taylor is scheduled to be sentenced on May 5, 2021.

“In order to reduce crime and maintain public safety, federal law prohibits convicted felons from possessing firearms,” said U.S. Attorney Murray.  “Through Project Safe Neighborhoods, we are working with our law enforcement partners to identify armed criminals and bring them to justice in federal court.”

This matter was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, with assistance from the Manchester Police Department.  The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Debra M. Walsh.

The case is part of ATF’s Project Safe Neighborhoods initiative, which is a federally-funded program intended to reduce gun violence through law enforcement training, public education, and aggressive law enforcement efforts to investigate and prosecute gun-related crimes.