BILLINGS — A Helena man convicted at trial of illegally possessing firearms was sentenced today to 87 months in prison and three years of supervised release, U.S. Attorney Kurt Alme said.
A jury in October found Brandon Best Gordon, 32, of Helena, guilty of felon in possession of a firearm after a two-day trial.
U.S. District Judge Scott W. Skavdahl, of Wyoming, presided.
At trial, the prosecution presented evidence that Gordon, a convicted felon, possessed two firearms in Park and Sweet Grass counties on July 17, 2018.
The firearms had been stolen earlier in two separate break-ins in Great Falls. The firearms were identified as a 9mm semi-automatic pistol and a .40 caliber semi-automatic pistol.
The firearms were in a backpack Gordon was carrying when he left a suspected drug house in Livingston and got into a vehicle that was being followed by Park County Sheriff’s Office detectives.
A Montana Highway Patrol trooper, who was familiar with the vehicle and its driver from previous drug activity information, stopped the vehicle for traffic violations.
Gordon was a passenger. Law enforcement served a state search warrant on the vehicle and found the backpack with the firearms.
Gordon was convicted in 2012 of felony crimes in Montana.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Paulette Stewart prosecuted the case which was investigated by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and Montana Highway Patrol.
This case is part of Project Guardian, a Department of Justice initiative launched in the fall of 2019 to reduce gun violence and enforce federal firearms laws.