FALL RIVER - A 32-year-old Fall River man who stole firearms and then sold them to an alleged drug dealer last year will spend up to six years in state prison, Bristol County District Attorney Thomas M. Quinn III announced.

Christopher Kehoe pleaded guilty in Fall River Superior Court last week to a multi-count indictment charging him with three counts of larceny of a firearm, three counts of carrying an illegal firearm, and one count each of trafficking firearms and unlawful possession of ammunition.

On November 16, 2016, the defendant's girlfriend reported to Fall River Police that three of her licensed firearms (a Glock 26, Ruger SR9C and a Ruger SR22) and 24 rounds of ammunition had been stolen from her safe.  The victim told police that she learned from a friend that her boyfriend, Christopher Kehoe, had taken ammunition from her to sell for drugs. After learning this information, she went into her safe and found the three firearms missing.

The defendant was subsequently questioned by police and admitted to selling two of the guns and all of the ammunition to Jose Cruz, an alleged local drug dealer.

Fall River Police later executed a search warrant at Cruz's home. During the execution of the search warrant, police found two bags of heroin hidden in the battery area of Cruz's phone. Police also found text messages and photos on Cruz's phone, which confirmed that Kehoe was arranging the sale of firearms and ammunition to Cruz.

Cruz was arrested and later indicted on charges of trafficking firearms, Carrying an illegal firearm-subsequent offense by violent offender, unlawful possession of ammunition by a violent offender and receiving stolen property +$250.  Mr. Cruz is due in court this Thursday for a pretrial hearing.

The case against Kehoe was prosecuted by Assistant District Attorney Michael Cahillane. The defendant's three-and-a-half to six year state prison sentence was handed down by Judge Thomas McGuire. Upon his release from prison, the defendant will be placed on probation for an additional year.

"This defendant stole and sold guns to a drug dealer that more than likely will be used for criminal purposes in Fall River or other communities," District Attorney Quinn said. "This undermines public safety and he needs to be held accountable."

-Bristol County District Attorney's Office