Judge sentences Jefferson County man, Joshua Braman to statutory maximum of 10 years for being a felon in possession of a firearm
ST. LOUIS (STL.News) United States District Court Judge Stephen R. Clark sentenced Joshua Braman to 120 months in prison today. The 37-year-old Crystal City, Missouri resident previously pleaded guilty to one count of being a felon in possession of a firearm, specifically a sawed-off shotgun.
In fact, on September 17, 2019, Joshua Braman beat a victim with the sawed-off shotgun and punched her dozens of times, causing her to bleed from her mouth and nose, to black out, and to ultimately need medical treatment. During the course of the assault, Braman bit his victim, keeping her in a stolen Mercury Grand Marquis, as he continued his assault. Braman also threatened to shoot this victim, dump her body in the river, and kill himself.
On October 23, 2019, Braman was apprehended at a residence in Campbell, Missouri. Not only did Braman have the stolen Grand Marquis parked outside the residence, but the sawed-off shotgun used to assault Braman’s victim, a 12 gauge Ever Best shotgun, was inside the vehicle.
“The courage the victim demonstrated during the judicial process is admirable,” said Colonel Mary T. Barton, St. Louis County Chief of Police. “I appreciate the manner in which the United States Attorney’s Office handled this case, and as always, I am extremely proud of the dedication of the officers of the St. Louis County Police Department.”
Sarah Pingsterhaus, Victim’s Advocate for the U.S. Attorney’s Office says, “Felon in possession offenses are often viewed as victimless crimes, but this is not always the case.” Oftentimes, these cases come to fruition as a result of law enforcement responding to a domestic violence call and discovering the abuser is a previously convicted felon who is in possession of a firearm.”
Domestic violence is growing at an alarming rate across the country, enhanced by the current pandemic. Stay-at-home orders were put in place to keep the public safe from the spread of the virus, but it also forced survivors to shelter in place with their abusers.
In June 2020, a representative from the Crime Victim Center reported “in April 2020 there was a 225% increase in domestic violence calls in the county and a 25% increase in the city.”