Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Northern District of Iowa
FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Monday, January 4, 2016
Cedar Rapids Man Sentenced to Prison for Possessing a Firearm and Ammunition
An admitted marijuana user who possessed a firearm and ammunition on the streets of Cedar Rapids was sentenced last week to 57 months in federal prison. Marcus Alexander Thomas, age 22, from Cedar Rapids, Iowa, received the prison term after an August 4, 2015, guilty plea.
At his plea hearing, Thomas admitted to possessing a Smith & Wesson 9mm semi-automatic handgun loaded with 9mm caliber Luger ammunition on March 16, 2015. He also admitted to be a marijuana user. The weapon was found in the trunk of the car Thomas was driving. He had been stopped by Cedar Rapids police for being suspected of prowling homes. Then, on May 21, 2015, police officers responded to a report of “shots fired.” Thomas was observed fleeing the area and seen throwing another firearm over a fence. One shot hit the windshield of a car. At his sentencing hearing, Thomas admitted he possessed and discharged this second firearm, which was stolen.
Thomas was sentenced in Cedar Rapids by United States District Court Chief Judge Linda R. Reade. Thomas was sentenced to 57 months’ imprisonment. A special assessment of $100 was imposed. He must also serve a three-year term of supervised release after the prison term. There is no parole in the federal system.
The case was prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Tim Vavricek and investigated by the Cedar Rapids Police Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. The case is being prosecuted as part of Project Safe Neighborhoods, a cooperative local, state and federal program aimed at the enhanced prosecution of gun crimes.