Federal judge sentences Sacramento man to 10 years for unlawful gun possession

SACRAMENTO, Calif. — U.S. District Judge Troy L. Nunley has sentenced 48-year-old Billy Paul Dunn to 10 years in federal prison for being a felon in possession of a firearm, Acting U.S. Attorney Phillip A. Talbert announced Monday. The sentence is the harshest penalty one can get for a violation of 18 U.S. Code § 922.

In July of 2020, according to court documents, Sacramento probation officer Joe Lozano, who supervised Dunn, received a tip that he was engaged in criminal activity. Dunn was on probation for a prior conviction for drug trafficking, one of six listed on his criminal record. Lozano followed up on the tip by obtaining a state search warrant for the geolocation of Dunn’s phone, which came back to a Super 8 Motel room located off El Centro Road.

Dunn was living in the motel with his girlfriend, Rebecca Lamb, who was also a “known probationer,” according to a criminal complaint. On August 25, law enforcement officials began surveillance and determined that Lamb had rented room 322, confirming her checkout date as later that day.

After Lamb checked out of the motel room, officers spotted Dunn standing on a nearby street corner and detained him, confiscating his cell phone as remaining officers secured room 322 and began a search. Lamb was detained shortly after as she returned to the motel.

During the search, officers located a .22 caliber revolver with 5 rounds of ammunition, clear plastic baggies, and four grams of methamphetamine inside a brown “LV” fanny pack. Under the fanny pack, a bag containing 104 grams of methamphetamine was also recovered. Lamb told officers that the fanny pack belonged to Dunn.

“I know based on my training that 104 grams of methamphetamine is an amount consistent with further distribution and is not likely to be solely for personal consumption,” FBI Special Agent Timothy Damm wrote.

It was later confirmed through an interstate nexus check conducted by the ATF, that the .22 caliber revolver had “previously traveled in interstate or foreign commerce” prior to Dunn having received it – making Dunn a suspect of a federal offense.

Investigators later confirmed that Dunn owned the fanny pack after he was recorded on surveillance footage walking with the bag outside of the motel.

“This case was the product of an investigation by the Sacramento County Sheriff’s Office and the Sacramento County Probation Department with the assistance of the Federal Bureau of Investigation’s Safe Streets Task Force,” a Department of Justice press release read.

Dunn’s two-year long case was prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Justin Lee. According to court documents, Dunn was represented by Benjamin David Galloway of the Federal Public Defender’s office.

Prison records show Dunn is currently held at CSP Corcoran’s Substance Abuse Treatment Facility.

Ethan Biando
Ethan Biando is a freelance journalist from Sacramento. His writing focuses on crime, courts, and policing. Find him on Twitter @ethanb822

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