May 29, 2020
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Newcastle man gets 15 months for gun charge

BANGOR, Maine — A Newcastle man was sentenced Monday in U.S. District Court to 15 months in prison for being a felon in possession of a firearm.

Kurt F. Martin, 54, of Newcastle also was sentenced to three years of supervised release after he completes his prison term, according to court documents.

U.S. District Judge John Woodcock ordered Martin to begin serving his sentence on March 12. The defendant has been free on $2,500 unsecured bail since his arraignment in June.

Martin pleaded guilty to the charge in July and was scheduled to go on trial later this month in federal court in Bangor on a second charge of possession of a gun after a misdemeanor domestic violence conviction, according to court documents. That charge was dismissed Monday at Martin’s sentencing hearing.

He faced up to 10 years in prison and a $250,000 fine. Under the prevailing federal sentencing guidelines, the recommended sentence was between 15 and 21 months, according to court documents.

Martin was prohibited from possessing guns because of two federal felony convictions — one in 1979 for possession of a stolen Treasury check and the other in 2002 for possession of firearms after a misdemeanor domestic violence conviction, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

More than seven years ago, Martin was sentenced to three years of probation and fined $1,800 on the gun charge, according to court documents. He also was sentenced to probation in 1979, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office.

In June, Martin was indicted on the new charges by a federal grand jury in Bangor, according to court documents. By pleading guilty, he admitted that he illegally possessed the rifle he used to shoot a moose in October 2007. The next month, Maine game wardens recovered the rifle and a handgun, which Martin admitted were his.

The case was part of Maine’s Project Safe Neighborhoods initiative, according to the U.S. Attorney’s Office, which coordinates the efforts of federal and state agencies in order to increase successful prosecution of firearms cases and educate potential offenders on the serious consequences of illegal gun use and possession.

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