TAMPA, FL – A 22-year-old convicted felon may have thought it was funny to go to Instagram Live and post a video of him holding a gun. And while he might have enjoyed the moment, he has just learned his fate after federal authorities charged him and he was convicted of possessing a firearm.
The bad luck started for Antwan Brown in February of this year after he took to Instagram Live to showcase his Taurus .9mm firearm. Court documents show that Brown had at least 18 rounds of ammunition for the gun at the time of the video.
Brown’s decision to post the video caught the attention of the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives.
The two law enforcement entities teamed up to investigate if the firearm Brown had in his possession at the time of the video was real, and they were able to show that it was and took him into custody for being a felon in possession of a firearm.
These investigations, although they may appear to be simple, are not. First, law enforcement officers must be able to prove that the criminal in the case, Brown, has not had his rights restored and therefore still unable to possess a firearm.
Second, officers must serve search warrants to be able to show that the video itself was real and not doctored in any way and occurred during a time frame in which Brown was a convicted felon. Lastly, they have to be able to prove that the firearm Brown is holding is real and not a replica of any kind.
Brown was convicted of the federal charge and sentenced by United States District Judge Mary Scriven to 18 months in federal prison for having a firearm. Brown plead guilty to the charge in July of 2022 and was ordered to surrender the firearm and ammunition.
The initiative to take Brown into custody was part of Project Safe Neighborhoods which teams up with different law enforcement agencies and the community to work to eradicate violent crime. Brown is far from the only person that has been nabbed by PSN as the DOJ has many different press releases showcasing their arrests, indictments, and convictions.
On October 6th, the DOJ announced that they were able to secure an indictment on a man from Rapid City, South Dakota. The man, in this case, Marshall Gibbons, stood accused of being in possession of a Glock .9mm firearm.
Court records show that Gibbons allegedly had possession of the firearm while allegedly conspiring to distribute marijuana and providing a false written statement while attempting to buy another firearm. Gibbons, who is a convicted felon, was arrested and indicted for possession of a firearm by a convicted person, conspiracy to distribute a controlled substance, and false statements during the purchase of a firearm.
If convicted of the charges, Gibbons could face up to ten years in prison and up to a $250,000 fine, followed by three years of supervised release. Gibbons has pleaded not guilty to the federal charges against him.
The program which nabbed both subjects was started in May of 2001, and according to the DOJ release:
“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 strategic enforcement priorities, and measuring the results.”
Pregnant mother shot in the head while sleeping with her family in a rental car
TAMPA, FL – Police in the Tampa area reported a homeless pregnant woman was shot while she slept with the other members of her family. The incident occurred in a parking lot across from the Martin Luther King, Jr. Recreation Complex.
On October 5th, officers with the Tampa Police Department responded to a shooting call around 4:30 a.m. and when they arrived on the scene, they found a pregnant woman had been shot in the head but was still alive.
Medical personnel rushed in and transported her to a nearby hospital where she is expected to survive.
Tampa Police advise the woman’s husband saw headlights coming from a vehicle that was approaching theirs in the parking lot. When the suspect vehicle got in front of the family of five’s car, whoever was inside fired multiple rounds striking the pregnant woman, and fled the scene.
Along with the mother and father, there was a 9-year-old girl, a 4-year-old boy, and a 3-year-old girl that were also inside. Despite a large number of rounds fired into the car, somehow none of the children or father were injured.
Police reported that the family, who is currently homeless, recently moved back to Tampa after having lived in another state. The father’s mother, Meca Mims, lives close enough to where the family had parked for the night to hear the shots being fired.
After hearing the shots, Mims immediately felt that her son and his family were in danger and took off running toward where the family had parked. When she got there, she found her daughter-in-law with a bullet wound to the face and the family vehicle riddled with bullets.
Police believe that the shooting was a random act of violence and have not released any potential suspect information other than the description of a vehicle they believe was used in the case. Tampa Police reported they are seeking a dark-colored sedan, possibly a 2006-2012 year, and are asking for the community to help them bring closure to this family.
Angelina Salcedo, a local reporter for 10TampaBay, released the photographs of what is believed to be the suspect vehicle on her Twitter page, saying:
“LOOK: If you’ve seen this car @TampaPD wants to hear from you. They’re searching for whoever opened fire on a car with a family of 5 inside. PD said it happened on Oregon Ave early this morning.”
Tampa Police are asking anyone with any information to contact the Tampa Police Department or go to CrimeStoppers and report what you may know.
In the meantime, the Tampa Police Department was able to secure temporary housing for the family until at least the mother is released from the hospital.
After she is released, the family will most likely be forced to move elsewhere which has caused family members to create a GoFundMe page to assist them during this difficult time. The organizer of the GoFundMe Page, Shaniqua Nelums, is the younger sister of the father. She wrote:
“My older brother his wife and 3 kids were involved in a drive-by shooting in tampa 10/05/22 around 4 this morning. My family is trying to raise money to help them find a home as they are homeless at the moment. Anything will help them in this time of need.”
The family is currently only seeking $5,000 which probably will not go a long way in terms of paying for the medical bills the mother is going to incur while recovering. As of this writing, the family has only received a little over $100 in donations.
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