BANGOR, Maine — The night Domingos Nobrega created an armed standoff that closed Main Street for six hours, he called a friend in New York and said he had a loaded gun and was ready to shoot and ready to die.
Nobrega told his friend, “I’m cocked, locked and ready to rock — hoo-rah,” Assistant U.S. Attorney James L. McCarthy said at Nobrega’s federal sentencing Friday for being a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition.
The prosecutor described Nobrega, 35, who also is known as Shawn Alan Nobrega, as a “public menace” just before U.S. District Court Judge John Woodcock sentenced him to 10 years behind bars.
The New York friend contacted Nobrega’s girlfriend, who went to the Bangor Police Department. Police went to Nobrega’s residence at 751 Main St. and attempted to contact him more than 60 times to no avail. Bangor police Detective Joel Nadeau, a sniper for the department’s Special Response Team, saw Nobrega with a handgun and 10 minutes later the standoff ended when police shot 12 rounds of tear gas into the home and Nobrega came out.
McCarthy commended Bangor police, saying they showed utmost professionalism and extreme restraint when dealing with the volatile situation.
Jeffrey Silverstein, Nobrega’s attorney, tried to poke holes in the case by questioning Nadeau about what he saw and making the suggestion that the gun, which was seen through a rifle scope, was an Airsoft pistol, which is a type of pellet gun.
Nobrega has a criminal history that includes assault with a deadly weapon, a sword, in 2001 in North Carolina; two domestic violence assaults in 1997 and 2001 in North Carolina and Florida; and assault and battery of a police officer in 2004 in Pittsylvania County, Virginia.
A federal jury in May 2011 found Nobrega guilty of being a felon in possession of a firearm and ammunition. In January, Nobrega petitioned Woodcock, requesting to be flogged in public instead of spending time behind bars.
Woodcock quickly denied the request and ordered Nobrega to undergo a psychiatric evaluation, which deemed him competent enough to be sentenced.
Nobrega was given an opportunity to address the court before Woodcock handed down his sentence and spent one hour and 25 minutes claiming he was not convicted of the felony gun charge because all court paperwork lists “NOBREGA” — all in capital letters — which he contends means the listing is for a corporate entity.
“I am a living, breathing, flesh-and-blood sovereign man,” he repeatedly said in his lengthy statement.
Woodcock, who described the standoff as an “egregious, dangerous situation,” sentenced Nobrega on Friday to 120 months in prison.
“The reason I’m going to do that is because what you did was … put others at extreme risk,” the federal judge said. “Your statements to [the New York friend] that you were ready to die … are very chilling,” he added later.
In addition to the 10-year prison sentence, Woodcock ordered Nobrega to serve three years of supervised release and added special conditions barring him from possessing any weapons or explosive devices and from using or possessing any controlled substance, alcohol or other intoxicant.
Woodcock ended the sentencing hearing by saying Nobrega has acted in a troubled manner ever since his conviction, has “a tendency to blame everyone else,” and should try a new tactic.
“I am going to encourage you to act in a peaceful and kind manner with the people around you,” the federal judge said. “What you will find is that people around you will react in the same manner.”