OKLAHOMA CITY – Earlier this week, OCTAVIO JUAN SANCHEZ, 36, of Norman, was sentenced to serve ten years, the statutory maximum sentence, in federal prison for illegal possession of a firearm by a convicted felon, announced U.S. Attorney Robert J. Troester.

On July 22, 2021, a federal grand jury returned a one-count Indictment that alleged illegal possession of a firearm.  Federal law prohibits a person who has previously been convicted of felony from possessing a firearm or ammunition.  On November 16, 2021, Sanchez was tried by a jury and found guilty.  

Public records reflect that, on May 14, 2021, as part of an investigation stemming from a claim of domestic violence, Norman Police Department officers executed a search warrant at Sanchez’s residence. While searching the residence, officers found a firearm hidden in a trash can in the kitchen along with a loaded 16-round magazine.  Officers also located more than eight pounds of marijuana, scales, and several vacuum baggies containing marijuana residue.  Prior to being found in possession of the firearm, Sanchez had been convicted of multiple felony offenses.

On December 14, 2022, U.S. District Judge Bernard M. Jones sentenced Sanchez to serve 120 months in federal prison, followed by three years of supervised release.  In support of this sentence, Judge Jones cited Sanchez’s previous criminal history which includes convictions for assault with a deadly weapon, possession of a deadly weapon, possession of controlled substances, and burglary.  Sanchez is currently charged with murder in the first degree and unlawful removal of a dead body, in Cleveland County case number CF-2022-860.

          In a separate case, public records further reflect that, on June 8, 2022, a federal grand jury returned a multi-count Indictment against Sanchez alleging conspiracy, fraud, and identity theft related to his misuse of Social Security benefits and tax stimulus payments for the benefit of a deceased relative.  A jury trial in this case is currently scheduled to begin in February 2023.  The public is reminded that the charges contained in this Indictment are merely accusations, and that Sanchez is presumed innocent until and unless proven guilty.

The firearm case is the result of investigations by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Norman Police Department.  Assistant U.S. Attorneys Mary E. Walters and David R. Nichols, Jr. prosecuted the case.

This case is part of “Operation 922,” the Western District of Oklahoma’s local implementation of the national Project Safe Neighborhoods and Project Guardian initiatives to reduce gun violence and enforce federal firearms laws. “Operation 922” prioritizes prosecution of federal gun crimes connected to domestic violence.

Reference is made to public filings for more information.