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Press Release

U.S. Attorney Justin Herdman and city of Youngstown announce Operation Red-Zone ahead of Labor Day weekend

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Northern District of Ohio

U.S. Attorney Justin Herdman, Youngstown Mayor Jamael Tito Brown and Police Chief Robin Lees announced today the launch of Operation Red-Zone in the city of Youngstown over the Labor Day holiday weekend. Joining the U.S. Attorney, Youngstown Mayor and Police Chief today were representatives from the ATF, DEA, FBI, U.S. Marshals, Mahoning County Prosecutor, Mahoning County Sherriff and the Ohio State Highway Patrol.

“We are here today ahead of the Labor Day holiday weekend to announce the launch of Operation Red-Zone in the city of Youngstown,” said U.S. Attorney Herdman. “What this means is that if you are prohibited from possessing a firearm under federal law, either because you have a prior felony conviction, a prior misdemeanor conviction, or some other disqualifying condition, then you are in the Red-Zone. If you possess a firearm this weekend while in the Red-Zone, we are going to stop you and prosecute you in federal court.”

“These type of partnerships are beneficial to the city of Youngstown and its residents,” said Police Chief Robin Lees. “The city’s 19 homicides this year are just one shy from last year’s total. This is just one of many reasons why we need to target repeat gun offenders, put them behind bars, and make sure they stay there.”

“ATF is here with our law enforcement partners to encourage everyone to take a step back from the violence and enjoy a peaceful Labor Day weekend,” stated Roland Herndon, ATF’s Special Agent in Charge for the Columbus Field Division. “But be aware, if you choose to use firearms to commit crimes, ATF and our law enforcement partners will be there, working to hold you accountable for those acts.”

During the press conference, U.S. Attorney Herdman announced that the Northern District will pursue federal charges, where applicable, against individuals who are prohibited under federal law from possessing firearms, or who otherwise use firearms in a violent crime or drug trafficking offense. In addition, the U.S. Attorney announced that law enforcement agents with ATF, DEA, FBI and U.S. Marshals will be out in full force over the holiday weekend.

“The people of the city of Youngstown deserve peace and days and nights free from anxiety and fears caused by violent criminals, said U.S. Attorney Herdman. "We will stop at nothing to ensure that people who are causing this violence are put in federal prison.”

Updated April 18, 2023

Violent Crime