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Press Release

Centre County Couple Pleads Guilty To Explosives And Firearms Offenses

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Middle District of Pennsylvania

WILLIAMSPORT - The United States Attorney’s Office for the Middle District of Pennsylvania announced that James Woodring, age 50, and Christina Woodring, age 34, a Centre Hall, Pennsylvania couple, pleaded guilty today before United States District Court Judge Malachy E. Mannion to firearms and explosives charges.

According to United States Attorney Bruce D. Brandler, James Woodring was arrested on May 20, 2016, shortly after an explosion at the couple’s Centre Hall residence, and charged by criminal complaint with similar offenses premised on the same conduct.  Both Woodrings were indicted on May 24, 2016 by a federal grand jury in Scranton, with conspiring to manufacture and deal explosives from May 1 through 18, 2016, and associated offenses.

The Woodrings conspired to purchase and transport commercial grade fireworks, to increase the fireworks’ power and volatility, and to sell them, all without a license to do so.   James Woodring also was charged with possessing a stolen semi-automatic pistol, a shotgun, a semiautomatic, large-capacity rifle and a rifle.  As a previously convicted felon, Woodring is prohibited from possessing the firearms.

James Woodring, pleaded guilty to one count of manufacturing explosives, and to one count of being a felon in possession of firearms.  In his plea agreement, James agreed that his offense involved 250 to 500 pounds of explosives and to forfeit the firearms seized from the residence.

Christina Woodring, pleaded guilty to one count of conspiring to manufacture and deal in explosives. 

The investigation was conducted by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, and Firearms Enforcement, the Pennsylvania State Police, the Centre Hall Police Department, and the Springettsbury Township Police Department.  The case is being prosecuted by Assistant United States Attorney Phillip J. Caraballo.

A sentence following a finding of guilt is imposed by the Judge after consideration of the applicable federal sentencing statutes and the Federal Sentencing Guidelines.

The maximum penalties under federal law for each charge to which James Woodring has pleaded guilty are ten years of imprisonment, a term of supervised release following imprisonment, and a fine.  The maximum penalties under federal law for the charge to which Christina Woodring has pleaded guilty are five years of imprisonment, a term of supervised release following imprisonment, and a fine. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the Judge is also required to consider and weigh a number of factors, including the nature, circumstances and seriousness of the offense; the history and characteristics of the defendant; and the need to punish the defendant, protect the public and provide for the defendant's educational, vocational and medical needs. For these reasons, the statutory maximum penalty for the offense is not an accurate indicator of the potential sentence for a specific defendant.


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Updated October 12, 2016