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Justice News

Department of Justice
U.S. Attorney’s Office
Northern District of West Virginia

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE
Wednesday, February 4, 2015

Three charged with unlawful possession of firearms

WHEELING, WEST VIRGINIA – A federal grand jury returned indictments today charging three convicted felons with unlawful possession of firearms, United States Attorney William J. Ihlenfeld, II, announced.

Michael Northcraft, 41, of Weirton, West Virginia, was previously convicted in the Circuit Court of Hancock County, West Virginia of the felony offense of “Entering a Building Other than a Dwelling.“ As a result of that conviction, he is prohibited from possessing a firearm. Northcraft is alleged to have been in possession of multiple firearms in December 2014, including three pistols, one revolver, two shotguns, and two rifles.  He is charged with one count of “Prohibited Person in Possession of a Firearm” following an investigation by the Brooke County Sheriff’s Department and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. He faces up to 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000.00.

Timothy William Cook, 30, of Martinsburg, West Virginia, was previously convicted in the Northern District of West Virginia of the felony offense of “Possession with Intent to Distribute Heroin.” Cook is alleged to have been in possession of both a pistol and a quantity of heroin in May 2014 in Berkeley County, West Virginia. Cook is charged with one count of “Felon in Possession of Firearms,” for which he faces up to 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000.00. He is further charged with one count of “Possession with Intent to Distribute Heroin,” for which he faces up to 20 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000.00.

William Gene George, Jr., 43, of Martinsburg, West Virginia, was previously convicted in the Circuit Court of Berkeley County, West Virginian of “Felony Child Neglect” in June 2007. George is alleged to have been in possession of a stolen rifle. He is charged with one count of “Felon in Possession of a Firearm” and one count of “Possession of a Stolen Firearm.” He faces up to 10 years in prison and a fine of up to $250,000.00 on each count.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives and the Berkeley County Sheriff’s Office investigated Cook and George.

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 defendants.

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

Assistant U.S. Attorney Stephen Vogrin is prosecuting Northcraft and Assistant U.S. Attorneys Paul Camilletti and Anna Krasinski are prosecuting Cook and George on behalf of the government.

Updated January 8, 2016