Missouri man sentenced to 7 years in prison for possessing illegal firearm

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A Missouri man was sentenced in federal court for illegally possessing the firearm he was carrying at the time he was arrested for rape and sex trafficking in Lawrence County, Mo.

David Arnold, 48, of Everton, was sentenced by U.S. District Judge Brian C. Wimes to seven years and one month in federal prison without parole. The court also ordered this federal sentence to be served consecutively to Arnold’s sentence in a separate state case for illegally possessing a firearm.

On April 13, 2021, Arnold pleaded guilty to being a felon in possession of a firearm. Arnold admitted he was in possession of a Jimenez Arms 9mm semi-automatic pistol on Oct. 18, 2019.

The U.S. Marshal Service was searching for Arnold that day following a warrant that was issued for his arrest in Lawrence County on charges related to rape, kidnapping, and sex trafficking A task force officer located Arnold’s vehicle at a residence in Springfield, and he was taken into custody. Arnold was carrying the loaded pistol in a holster on his right hip and was in possession of 3.3 grams of methamphetamine.

The Lawrence County charges are still pending.

Under federal law, it is illegal for anyone who has been convicted of a felony to be in possession of any firearm or ammunition. Arnold has eight prior felony convictions, including multiple instances of possession or distribution of a controlled substance, driving while intoxicated-persistent offender, involuntary manslaughter, illegally possessing a firearm, and assaulting a law enforcement officer. His 31 misdemeanor convictions include several convictions for driving under the influence.

This case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Patrick Carney. It was investigated by the Springfield, Mo., Police Department, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, and the U.S. Marshal Service.

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