A Pine Bluff man accused of being a felon in possession of a firearm failed to convince the Arkansas Court of Appeals of his innocence.
Anthony Ramon Simmons was arrested in 2018 after police served a search warrant at an auto repair shop on East Harding Avenue after a controlled purchase of drugs was made at the shop from a person other than Simmons.
During the search, police found an AK-47 with a loaded magazine under a sofa in the office area of the business. Police also confiscated what was believed to be crack cocaine, a prescription bottle containing hydrocodone pills with a name other than Simmons on it.
As a convicted felon, Simmons was arrested and charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm, possession of drugs and firearms and possession of a controlled substance.
When Simmons was questioned, he admitted that the rifle was his and said he bought it from a “crackhead” for about $150.
In 2021, a Jefferson County jury found Simmons guilty of being a felon in possession of a firearm as an habitual offender and possession of a firearm during a drug crime and sentenced him to 10 years in prison.
In his appeal, Simmons claimed there was insufficient evidence to convict him of the charges but the appeals court disagreed.
Writing for the court, Judge Stefanie Potter Barrett said evidence was introduced that Simmons was the only person in the shop, he had no employees, the rifle was in an office area under a sofa and he admitted he had bought the rifle from a crackhead.