GREENEVILLE, Tenn. (WJHL) — A Kingsport woman was sentenced to 21 months in prison on Monday after she reportedly purchased firearms with a convicted felon and provided false statements to a licensed firearm dealer.
A release from the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Eastern District of Tennessee said Tonya Rae Saine, also known as Tonya Bowles, 56, was sentenced following the 2021 crime that happened in Sevierville.
During the course of the investigation, Saine admitted to police that she had met a male felon while she was serving as a contracted nurse for the Tennessee Department of Correction and he was incarcerated on felony convictions, according to the release.
The release said Saine purchased both a pistol and rifle from a Federal Firearms Licensee (FFL) in Sevierville while accompanied by the convicted felon, who she admitted to being in a relationship with.
Court documents show that Saine and the felon traveled to the business, filled out required paperwork using her information and purchased two firearms, according to the release. Surveillance video from the firearm store showed Saine handing the firearms to the felon, and him carrying one of them out of the store.
The release goes on to say police discovered a text message sent to the felon stating, “I’ve got your gun and stuff in the house,” on Saine’s mobile phone. A witness told police that they “saw the felon with the pistol and were able to recognize the firearm because of the attached laser aiming device and distinctive markings on the firearm,” the release states.
The release said Saine admitted to law enforcement that she was aware the male that accompanied her was a convicted felon and that he had traveled with her to purchase the firearms. Tonya Saine will spend 21 months in prison with three years supervised upon release.