Convicted Felon Sentenced to 80 Months in Prison for Firearm Possession During Drug Crime
News Release from US DoJ, July 14, 2022
HONOLULU – United States District Judge Derrick K. Watson yesterday sentenced Andrew Schwab, 43, of Waianae, Hawaii, to 80 months in prison for possessing a firearm in furtherance of methamphetamine trafficking. Judge Watson took note that Schwab had a lengthy criminal history for burglary, theft, and escape, and he found Schwab’s conduct toward the Honolulu Police Department (“HPD”) officers who arrested him arguably the most serious aspect of the offense.
According to court documents and information presented in court, on August 21, 2018, HPD officers approached Schwab—a convicted felon with an outstanding state parole retake warrant—at a gas station. Instead of complying with the officers’ attempt to apprehend him, Schwab jumped back into his car and intentionally rammed it into the front of a police car with two police officers in it. Schwab then reached for the floorboard of the vehicle where he had a loaded firearm, a Glock 19, 9mm pistol. HPD officers forcibly removed Schwab from the vehicle and then recovered the Glock 19 pistol, which Schwab later admitted he possessed to protect his drugs and drug proceeds, along with two other loaded firearms, 23 rounds of 9mm ammunition, 27.3 grams of methamphetamine intended for distribution, and over $5,600 in drug proceeds.
In light of Schwab’s extensive criminal history and the nature and circumstances of the offense, Judge Watson imposed a sentence higher than the range calculated under the federal Sentencing Guidelines.
“As we work to reduce crime in our community, our priority is the apprehension of criminals like Schwab who possess firearms for the purpose of engaging in additional criminal activity,” said U.S. Attorney Clare E. Connors. “The prison sentence in this case is soundly justified based on the defendant’s violent resistance to law enforcement and his possession of multiple firearms and ammunition to protect his methamphetamine trafficking activity.”
This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), the centerpiece of the Department of Justice’s violent crime reduction efforts. PSN is an evidence-based program proven to be effective at reducing violent crime. Through PSN, a broad spectrum of stakeholders works together to identify the most pressing violent crime problems in the community and develop comprehensive solutions to address them. As part of this strategy, PSN focuses enforcement efforts on the most violent offenders and partners with locally based prevention and reentry programs for lasting reductions in crime.
The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Honolulu Police Department conducted the investigation that resulted in the indictment. Assistant U.S. Attorney Sara D. Ayabe handled the prosecution.