Rockport man accused of illegal gun possession

Fri, 10/16/2020 - 6:30pm

    ROCKLAND — A Rockport man who is a convicted felon is accused of illegally possessing a firearm that he purchased after passing a background check at a local sporting goods store.  

    Sherry D. Morris, 50, was issued summonses for aggravated forgery, criminal attempt, and possession of a firearm by a felon by Maine State Police Trooper Adam McNaughton, according to a Maine Department of Public Safety spokesperson.

    Morris was charged after officers from the Maine State Police and Rockport Police Department searched his home on Commercial Street Sept. 30. The evidence log for the search filed in Knox County Court, documents that police seized a handgun case, original handgun box, ammunition, and a 2020 hunting license issued by the Maine Department of Inland Fisheries and Wildlife (MDIFW).

    According to the affidavit filed in court by McNaughton, the investigation began when the Maine State Police Special Investigations Unit received from the FBI the June 2020 NICS (National Instant Criminal Background Check System) background check denials for Maine. The list is generated by the U.S. Department of Justice based on information from the NICS division of the FBI, in conjunction with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives.

    The June denial list indicates that Morris was a convicted felon and attempted to purchase a firearm in May 2020 at a Rockland store. On the application for the firearm, Morris had answered no that he was a convicted felon, although he was convicted in 1991 in Arkansas for felony criminal attempt.

    In March 2020, Morris passed the background check and was able to purchase a handgun from the same store.

    Morris had also applied for and received hunting licenses from MDIFW in 2017, 2018, 2019, and 2020, according to the affidavit.

    Morris is scheduled to make his initial court appearance on Nov. 23.

    Sarah Shepherd can be reached at