Ocala, Florida –United States Attorney Roger B. Handberg announces the unsealing of an indictment charging Michael Tyrone Young (32, Ocala) with possessing a firearm as a previously convicted felon. If convicted, Young faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in federal prison. A federal grand jury had indicted Young on December 7, 2021, he was arrested on February 15, 2022.
According to court documents, officers from the Ocala Police Department encountered Young during a routine patrol of a local public housing complex on the night of August 31, 2021. The officers observed Young dropping a heavy metallic object that resembled a firearm. Young, who was not a resident of the complex, had a strong odor of marijuana about his person. During a subsequent search, a loaded 9mm handgun fell out of Young’s pants. The officers also located MDMA (ecstasy) on his person. A record check showed that Young had prior state felony convictions for possession of cocaine with the intent to sell, possession of cannabis with the intent to sell, and possession of oxycodone with the intent to sell. As a convicted felon, he is prohibited from possessing firearms and ammunition under federal law.
This case is being prosecuted as part of the joint federal, state, and local Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN) Program, the centerpiece of the Department of Justice’s violent crime reduction efforts. PSN is an evidence-based program proven to be effective at reducing violent crime. Through PSN, a broad spectrum of stakeholders work together to identify the most pressing violent crime problems in the community and develop comprehensive solutions to address them. As part of this strategy, PSN focuses enforcement efforts on the most violent offenders and partners with locally based prevention and reentry programs for lasting reductions in crime.
An indictment is merely a formal charge that a defendant has committed one or more violations of federal criminal law, and every defendant is presumed innocent unless, and until, proven guilty.
This case was investigated by the City of Ocala Police Department and the Federal Bureau of Investigation. It will be prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Robert E. Bodnar, Jr.