Third Arrest Made in Worcester Armory Theft
BOSTON – A Dorchester man was arraigned in U.S. District Court in Worcester yesterday in connection with selling weapons that were stolen from the U.S. Army Reserve Center in Worcester (Worcester Armory) and for making false statements to federal agents.
Tyrone James, 28, was charged with one count of being a felon in possession of a firearm and one count of making false statements. James was returned to state custody following his initial appearance. U.S. District Court Magistrate Judge David H. Hennessy scheduled a detention and probable cause hearing for Jan. 4, 2016.
According to court documents, On Nov. 19, 2015, James Morales was arrested and charged in connection with the theft of 16 weapons from the Worcester Amory. On Nov. 20, 2015, federal agents searched the residence of Ashlee Bigsbee and Tyrone James who had met with Morales the day after the robbery. According to Morales, Bigsbee introduced Morales to James who then arranged the sale of five handguns in two separate transactions. During an interview with federal agents, it is alleged that James falsely denied having knowledge of the stolen weapons or having been involved in their sale. However, forensic examiners recovered numerous previously-deleted text messages in which James allegedly offered to arrange for the sale of weapons stolen from the Worcester Armory. For example, on Nov. 15, 2015 Tyrone texted one contact, “Bro hit me if u know anyone lookin for any blicks.” In a separate conversation, James allegedly negotiated the sale of three M-11 handguns for $900.
On Nov. 19, 2015, James Morales was arrested and charged with one count of unlawful possession of a machine gun, one count of unlawful possession of stolen firearms and one count of theft of government property. Ashley Bigsbee has been charged with one count of unlawful possession of stolen firearms and one count of false statements.
The FBI is offering up to a $15,000 reward for information which leads to the recovery of the remaining missing firearms. Anyone with information should call the FBI at 617-742-5533 or visit https://www.fbi.gov/boston/press-releases/2015/fbi-offers-15-000-reward-to-recover-stolen-firearms.
The charge of being a felon in possession of firearms provides for a sentence of no greater than 10 years in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of $250,000. The charge of making a false statement provides for a sentence of no greater than five years in prison, three years of supervised release and a fine of $250,000. Actual sentences for federal crimes are typically less than the maximum penalties. Sentences are imposed by a federal district court judge based upon the U.S. Sentencing Guidelines and other statutory factors.
United States Attorney Carmen M. Ortiz; Harold H. Shaw, Special Agent in Charge of the Federal Bureau of Investigation, Boston Field Division; Daniel J. Kumor, Special Agent in Charge of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms & Explosives, Boston Field Division; Matthew Etre, Special Agent in Charge of Homeland Security Investigations in Boston; Colonel Richard D. McKeon, Superintendent of the Massachusetts State Police; Boston Police Commissioner William Evans; Chief Gary Gemme of the Worcester Police Department; and Commissioner Haas of the Cambridge Police Department, made the announcement today. The case is being prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorneys Mark Grady and Corey Flashner of Ortiz’s Worcester Branch Office.
The details contained in the charging document are allegations. The defendant is presumed to be innocent unless and until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in the court of law.