Wesley Hardin Hawkins, 43, of North Platte, was sentenced Tuesday to 11 months in federal prison for illegally possessing a firearm.
Hawkins was arrested on Sept. 15 by North Platte Police after a woman in North Platte reported Hawkins had a handgun in her home.
Investigators found Hawkins sleeping in a bed in the woman’s house with the butt of a revolver sticking out from under the pillow. The gun was illegal because Hawkins was convicted in 2005 of third degree domestic assault, which made him ineligible to possess a firearm, U.S. Attorney Deb Gilg said.
Hawkins was also previously charged with attempted second-degree assault, use of a weapon to commit a felony, willful reckless driving, flight to avoid arrest and driving under a suspended license in Lincoln County. Those charges were dismissed when the federal prosecution began.
He was originally arrested after he allegedly threatened the manager of Brazen Jane’s bar in Maxwell with a knife Apr. 27, 2011. The two had an argument, according to former Lincoln County Sheriff’s Chief Deputy Dean Sparks.
Hawkins fled the scene before deputies arrived, but was spotted by North Platte police near the intersection of U.S. Highway 30 and Newberry Road, Lt. Rich Thompson said. A brief chase ensued before Hawkins surrendered after police and deputies surrounded his home.
Maxwell schools were locked down for an hour that day as a result of the chase, Thompson said.
Gilg said the federal charge of illegally possessing a firearm was investigated by a cooperating task force of law enforcement agencies throughout a 22-county area in west-central/southwest Nebraska, including the North Platte Police Department, Dawson County Sheriff’s Office, Lincoln County Sheriff’s Office, Red Willow County Sheriff’s Office, Frontier County Sheriff’s Office, Nebraska State Patrol, Federal Bureau of Investigation (FBI), Drug Enforcement Administration (DEA), and Homeland Security Investigations (HSI).