MINNEAPOLIS, Minn. – A Rochester man federal authorities call a “career criminal” is going to prison.
Charles Antonio Gayles, 38, pleaded guilty to felon in possession of a firearm - armed career criminal and was sentenced Tuesday in Minnesota’s U.S. District Court to 15 years behind bars, followed by five years of supervised release.
“The U.S. Attorney’s Office is focusing our efforts on taking armed criminals off the streets, in the Twin Cities and in greater Minnesota,” says United States Attorney Erica MacDonald. “Mr. Gayles’ long and violent criminal history in Olmstead County warranted this significant sentence and I applaud our federal and local law enforcement partners for their work in bringing him to justice.”
Gayles was arrested on May 7, 2019, after speeding away from an attempted traffic stop. A police officer says he pulled over Gayles and noticed a baggie of marijuana inside the vehicle. Gayles gave the baggie to the officer and then sped away. Court documents state Gayles abandoned his vehicle, threw a gun into a bush when running away, then was arrested hiding inside a trashcan. A semiautomatic pistol was found in the bush and a search of Gayles’ vehicle discovered 27.34 grams of marijuana, two loaded 9mm handguns, and one 32-round magazine. Gayles could not possess a firearm due to multiple prior felony convictions.
“As an armed career criminal, this individual’s criminal conduct has plagued the Rochester community for far too long,” says ATF Special Agent in Charge William Henderson, of the St. Paul Field Division. “We are pleased to see that justice has been served. We appreciate the hard work from Rochester Police Department in this case.”
This case is the result of an investigation conducted by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives and the Rochester Police Department.