From The Tribune staff reports
BIRMINGHAM — A 21-year-old Birmingham man was sentenced on the charge of felon in possession of a firearm on Tuesday, August 9.
The USDOJ states that on February 11, 2022, detectives of the Birmingham Crime Reduction Team (CRT) conducted surveillance on Austin due to his being wanted for burglary first degree and a parole violation. Detectives observed Austin entering the passenger side of a vehicle, and they followed the vehicle until it stopped at the Chevron Gas Station located at the intersection of Sunhill Road and Carson Road. As Austin exited the gas station, officers arrested him and retrieved a 9mm Smith and Wesson handgun from Austin’s waistband.
Austin was prohibited from possessing a firearm because he was a convicted felon.
“The ATF prides itself in working with our state, local, and federal partners to take firearms out of the hands of individuals who knowingly and illegally possess them. In most cases, firearms are obtained illegally by gang members and passed around until they are recovered in some type of unfortunate criminal incident,” ATF SAC Mickey French said. The hard work and collaborative efforts that the ATF and our law enforcement partners demonstrate on a daily basis allows us to successfully combat crime in and around the Birmingham area.”
Austin is linked to the Hard 2 Kill gang. Agents of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Explosives, and Firearms (ATF) investigated the Hard 2 Kill gang, better known as H2K. This gang operates in the Birmingham area and is known to be involved in acts of violence, illegal drug distribution, and illegal firearm possession.
“Street gangs are responsible for much of the violent crime in Birmingham,” U.S. Attorney Prim F. Escalona said. “To reduce the senseless deaths and injuries from gun violence, our law enforcement partners seek to identify the most violent offenders and use every available means to take them off the street. Prosecution of felons with guns is a very effective way to reduce the violence that plagues our communities.”
ATF investigated the case along with the Birmingham Police Department and the Alabama Bureau of Pardons and Parole.