United States District Court, N.D. Georgia, Atlanta Division
REPORT AND RECOMMENDATION
CATHERINE M. SALINAS UNITED STATES MAGISTRATE JUDGE
February 21, 2017, a grand jury sitting in the Northern
District of Georgia returned a multi-count indictment against
Talante Fisher-Bland (“Defendant”) and five other
individuals for charges relating to the purchase and sale of
firearms. [Doc. 1]. Specifically, Defendant was charged with
three counts of aiding and abetting another in making
material false statements to a federally licensed firearms
dealer, in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 922(a)(6) and
§2, and three counts of aiding and abetting the transfer
of firearms to an out-of-state resident, in violation of 18
U.S.C. § 922(a)(5) and §2. [Id.].
Defendant has filed a Motion to Suppress Evidence, in which
he seeks to suppress all evidence obtained during a
warrant-authorized search of his residence. [Doc. 75]. For
the reasons discussed below, I RECOMMEND
that the motion be DENIED.
February 28, 2017, United States Magistrate Judge Alan J.
Baverman signed a search warrant for Defendant's
residence, 105 Concord Terrace, McDonough, Georgia, 30253
(the “Warrant”). [Doc. 122-1]. The application
for the Warrant was supported by an Affidavit signed by
Special Agent Jonathan P. Gray of the Bureau of Alcohol,
Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives (“ATF”) (the
“Affidavit”). [Doc. 93-1]. The Affidavit states
that on August 15, 2016, Brittni Dixon and Martavius Askew
purchased multiple firearms from the Liquidation Outlet, a
federally licensed firearm dealer in Georgia. [Id.
¶¶ 12-14]. Ms. Dixon purchased thirteen firearms,
and Mr. Askew purchased ten. [Id. ¶¶ 12,
14-16, 18, 20]. Several of these weapons were later recovered
by police in Rochester, New York, in connection with criminal
activity. [Id. ¶¶ 17, 19, 30, 40, 48].
to the Affidavit, Special Agent Gray's investigation
revealed that Defendant drove both Ms. Dixon and Mr. Askew to
the Liquidation Outlet on August 15, 2016 to purchase the
guns. [Doc. 93-1 ¶ 22]. Ms. Dixon participated in the
gun purchase at the request of Defendant's girlfriend,
Artia Woolfork, who had asked Ms. Dixon to help Defendant buy
a firearm. [Id. ¶ 21]. Ms. Dixon told Special
Agent Gray that on August 15, 2016, Defendant picked her up
in a black car, and Martavius Askew was in the passenger
seat; Defendant drove them to the Liquidation Outlet.
[Id. ¶¶ 22-23]. Upon arriving at the
Liquidation Outlet parking lot, they met five individuals who
were introduced to Ms. Dixon as “people from New
York.” [Id. ¶ 23]. At this point, Ms.
Dixon was told that Defendant wanted her to purchase several
firearms for the people from New York. [Id. ¶
24]. Ms. Dixon told Special Agent Gray that the New York
people selected which firearms that Ms. Dixon was to buy, and
one of the New York people paid the store clerk for the guns.
[Id. ¶ 25]. According to Ms. Dixon, she never
touched the guns or the money during the transaction.
October 3, 2016, Special Agent Gray interviewed
Defendant's girlfriend, Artia Woolfork, who told him that
the firearms purchased on August 15, 2016 were for the New
York people, who planned to take the guns to New York. [Doc.
93-1 ¶¶ 32-34]. She also stated that Defendant and
Mr. Askew were each being paid to purchase the guns.
[Id. ¶ 34]. Ms. Woolfork also told Special
Agent Gray that she thought Defendant had previously sold
four of his personal firearms to the people from New York
sometime between March and August of 2016. [Id.].
October 17, 2016 Special Agent Gray interviewed Martavius
Askew about his involvement in the August 15th firearms
purchases. [Doc. 93-1 ¶ 42]. During this interview, Mr.
Askew stated that he had filled out the paperwork for the
August 15th firearms purchase at the direction of Defendant.
[Id. ¶¶ 43-44]. According to Mr. Askew,
after the purchase was made, he gave the box of firearms to
the New York people. [Id. ¶ 46]. Mr. Askew
denied receiving any compensation for his participation in
the purchase. [Id. ¶ 44].
September 2016, Special Agent Gray reviewed a Facebook page
depicting Defendant in various poses with firearms and
confirmed that Defendant had purchased two guns early in
2014, a SCCY Industries pistol and a Glock Pistol. [Doc. 93-1
¶¶ 31, 37]. He also confirmed that Defendant was
not licensed to import, manufacture, deal, or collect
firearms or ammunition. [Id. ¶ 47]. The
following month, Special Agent Gray interviewed Defendant at
his residence (the target location of the Warrant) and spoke
with Defendant in the foyer of his house. [Id.
¶ 35]. When asked if he had purchased any firearms
recently, Defendant stated that he owned a couple of Glock
pistols, and then stated that he wanted an attorney.
[Id. ¶ 36].
Agent Gray's Affidavit closed by stating that Defendant
had been indicted the week before (on February 21, 2017) with
“multiple violations of federal firearms laws, ”
and that indictment was under seal, meaning that Defendant
was not aware of it. [Doc. 93-1 ¶ 49]. According to
Special Agent Gray, “[w]hile under felony indictment,
[Defendant] is prohibited from possessing
firearms.”[Id. ¶ 50].
application for the search warrant was presented to Judge
Baverman seven days after the indictment was returned, on
February 28, 2017, and Judge Baverman signed it that day. The
Warrant authorized law enforcement to seize the following
a. Talente Ravon FISHER-BLAND, B/M, DOB 09/08/1992, 5'10,
b. Any and all firearms and ammunition.
c. Any and all ledgers, paperwork, receipts, manuals, or
documents in any and all media formats regarding the theft,
purchase, sale, or transfer of firearms and ammunition.
d. Any and all containers, boxes, or packaging bearing
firearms or ammunition information.
e. Any and all applications or membership cards associated
with firearms related clubs or shooting ranges.
f. Any and all photographs in any and all media formats,
targets, or spent cartridge casings consistent with shooting