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Press Release

Marshall County man indicted for firearms violation

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

WHEELING, WEST VIRGINIA – William M. Johnson, Jr., of McMechen, West Virginia, had his initial appearance in federal court today after being indicted by a federal grand jury sitting in Wheeling this week for a firearms violation, United States Attorney Bill Powell announced.

Johnson, age 30, is charged with one count of “False Statement to Acquire Firearm.” Johnson is accused of making a false statement when purchasing a firearm. Johnson is accused of claiming the weapon was for his use, when, in fact, he purchased the .40 caliber pistol for a convicted felon. The crime took place in August 2018 in Ohio County.

Johnson faces up to 10 years incarceration and a fine of up to $250,000. Under the Federal Sentencing Guidelines, the actual sentence imposed will be based upon the seriousness of the offenses and the prior criminal history, if any, of the defendant.

This case was brought as part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN). Project Safe Neighborhoods is 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.

Assistant U.S. Attorney Robert H. McWilliams, Jr. is prosecuting the case on behalf of the government. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives investigated. 

An indictment is merely an accusation. A defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.

U.S. Magistrate Judge James P. Mazzone presided.

Updated June 6, 2019

Firearms Offenses
Project Safe Neighborhoods