PORTLAND — A Lewiston man pleaded guilty Tuesday in federal court to being a felon with a gun.

Wearing a jail suit and with his ankles shackled at U.S. District Court, Sabree Branch, 27, admitted to the Class C felony, which is punishable by up to 10 years in prison and a fine of $250,000.

His lawyer, Michael Whipple, said he had not reached a plea agreement with prosecutors, but believed the plea was in the best interest of his client.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Daniel Perry said in court papers that law enforcement officers had executed a search warrant Sept. 4, 2018, at Branch’s home at 193 Lincoln St. in Lewiston.

Officers had watched through a door window as Branch ran to a back bedroom of the apartment. In a drawer in the bedroom’s only dresser, authorities found a stolen Smith & Wesson .38-caliber handgun, according to court records.

DNA testing of the gun revealed a match with Branch.

In 2015, Branch as convicted of using a firearm during and in relation to a drug trafficking crime, for which he was sentenced to 30 months in prison.


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