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United States Attorney Ron Parsons announced that an Aberdeen, South Dakota, man convicted of Felon in Possession of a Firearm as a result of a federal jury trial in Aberdeen, South Dakota, on October 13, 2020, was sentenced on December 15, 2020 by U.S. District Judge Charles B. Kornmann. 

Darrell Two Hearts, age 41, was sentenced to 71 months in federal prison, 3 years of supervised release, and a special assessment to the Federal Crime Victims Fund in the amount of $100.

Two Hearts was indicted by a federal grand jury on July 20, 2020. 

The conviction stemmed from an incident on or about April 25, 2020, when Two Hearts was arrested in Aberdeen.  Officers had been searching for Two Hearts to arrest him on outstanding warrants.  When they found him, Two Hearts had a loaded handgun in his backpack, along with syringes, a pot pipe, and a marijuana grinder.  He also had a small amount of methamphetamine in his pants pocket.  He had previously been convicted of felony crimes that prohibited him from possessing any firearms.  At trial, a jury unanimously found that he illegally possessed a 9mm handgun.

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and make our neighborhoods safer for everyone.  The Department of Justice reinvigorated PSN in 2017 as part of its renewed focus on targeting violent criminals, directing all U.S. Attorney’s Offices to work in partnership with federal, state, local, and tribal law enforcement and the local community to develop effective, locally-based strategies to reduce violent crime.

This case is also part of Project Guardian, the Department of Justice’s signature initiative to reduce gun violence and enforce federal firearms laws.  Initiated by the Attorney General in the fall of 2019, Project Guardian draws upon the Department’s past successful programs to reduce gun violence; enhances coordination of federal, state, local, and tribal authorities in investigating and prosecuting gun crimes; improves information-sharing by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives when a prohibited individual attempts to purchase a firearm and is denied by the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS), to include taking appropriate actions when a prospective purchaser is denied by the NICS for mental health reasons; and ensures that federal resources are directed at the criminals posing the greatest threat to our communities.  For more information about Project Guardian, please see: https://www.justice.gov/projectguardian.

This case was investigated by the Aberdeen Police Department, the Brown County Sheriff’s Office, the South Dakota Division of Criminal Investigation, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives. Assistant U.S. Attorney Jeffrey C. Clapper prosecuted the case.

Two Hearts was immediately turned over to the custody of the U.S. Marshals Service.

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