A 20-year-old Buffalo man caught with a 9 mm semi-automatic Luger pistol after a police chase has pleaded guilty, as charged, to second-degree criminal possession of a weapon, the Erie County District Attorney’s Office announced.

Kirk Abernathy, of Orchard Place, said he was carrying the gun for protection on Jan. 9, 2012 on Suffolk Street because of his ongoing dispute with rival gang members, according to the District Attorney’s Office.

Abernathy faces 15 years in prison when sentenced July 1 as a second felony offender before State Supreme Court Justice M. William Boller.

District Attorney Frank A. Sedita III credited Buffalo police officers Michael Acquino and Mark Hamilton for getting “another gun-toting thug … off the street and on the way to state prison.”