GAINESVILLE, FLORIDA – Trevis Avante Strawder, 28, of Fort White, Florida, was sentenced to 10 years in federal prison after previously pleading guilty on October 26, 2022, to possession of a firearm by a convicted felon. The sentence was announced by Jason R. Coody, United States Attorney for the Northern District of Florida.
“The collaborative efforts of our partners in the Gainesville Gun Violence Initiative continue to produce impactful results, and we will continue working tirelessly to make North Florida safer,” said U.S. Attorney Coody. “This sentence ensures that our community will be safer and sends a message that there are real and severe consequences for federal firearm offenses.”
On August 17, 2021, Gainesville Police Department (GPD) officers responded to a 911 call reporting an armed disturbance at Woodland Park Apartments. The caller described that the male suspect with the firearm was leaving the scene in a vehicle and provided a description. Officers responding to the area located a vehicle matching the caller’s description and attempted to conduct a traffic stop on it. The suspect vehicle slowed in a residential neighborhood and Strawder exited the rear driver’s side door of the vehicle and fled on foot while carrying a black bag. Officers gave chase and were able to observe Strawder running into a wooded area while no longer wearing the black bag. A GPD K9 tracked from the scene of the attempted traffic stop to the location of a black bag, near where Strawder jumped the fence to get into the wooded area. The bag was ultimately searched and discovered to contain two loaded pistols and several different controlled substances (cocaine, crack cocaine, MDMA, MDPV, etc.).
Officers set up a perimeter in the area and were subsequently alerted that Strawder attempted to force entry into the residence of an elderly man. The homeowner was able to keep Strawder from gaining entry through the front door, and GPD officers were later able to locate and apprehend Strawder hiding in another part of the residence. Once he was apprehended, Strawder provided a false name to officers, but he was positively identified and taken into custody on charges stemming from this incident as well as other outstanding arrest warrants.
Strawder had multiple prior felony convictions, to include burglary, grand theft, drug possession, possession of a firearm by a felon, and battery on a detainee. The case was brought to the attention of the Bureau of Alcohol Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, who adopted the case for federal prosecution. Assistant United States Attorney Christopher M. Elsey prosecuted the case.
This federal conviction is the result of the joint efforts of local, state, and federal law enforcement agencies that form the Gainesville Gun Violence Initiative (GVI). The Gainesville GVI was established in April 2019, by the United States Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Florida in an effort to stem the escalating gun violence in Gainesville and the surrounding areas. As GVI partners, the State Attorney’s Office for the Eighth Judicial Circuit, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, the Federal Bureau of Investigation, the Florida Department of Law Enforcement, the Gainesville Police Department, the Alachua County Sheriff’s Office, the Alachua Police Department, the University of Florida Police Department, and the Florida Department of Corrections share this commitment to protecting public safety.
The United States Attorney’s Office for the Northern District of Florida is one of 94 offices that serve as the nation’s principal litigators under the direction of the Attorney General. To access public court documents online, please visit the U.S. District Court for the Northern District of Florida website. For more information about the United States Attorney’s Office, Northern District of Florida, visit http://www.justice.gov/usao/fln/index.html.