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Press Release

Indicted young Laredoan charged with federal firearms violations

For Immediate Release
U.S. Attorney's Office, Southern District of Texas

LAREDO, Texas – A federal grand jury has returned an indictment against a 19-year-old Laredo resident for illegally possessing a firearm while under an active domestic violence protection order and possessing a firearm while under indictment, announced U.S. Attorney Ryan K. Patrick.

Mario Alberto Salazar is expected to appear for his arraignment next week before a U.S. magistrate judge in Laredo.

The criminal complaint originally filed in the case alleges Salazar was under an active protective order which prohibited him from possessing a firearm.  However, he allegedly assaulted a woman March 31, 2020 – striking her in the left arm and hip with the firearm.  The charges also allege he pointed a firearm at her feet while threatening to shoot her.

According to the allegations, authorities test fired the weapon and entered the casings into the National Integrated Ballistic Information Network (NIBIN) which led to a match to a shooting incident in Laredo on March 23. On that date, Salazar allegedly discharged a firearm at a vehicle as it was driving through an intersection.  He was still subject to the domestic violence order at that time, according to the charges.

“NIBIN is the only national network that allows for the capture and comparison of ballistic evidence to aid in solving and preventing violent crimes involving firearms,” said Special Agent in Charge Fred Milanowski of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF).

The criminal complaint also alleges Salazar is under indictment in Webb County for engaging in organized criminal activity and unlawful restraint and is prohibited under federal law from possessing a firearm.

If convicted of either charge, Salazar faces up to 10 years in federal prison and a possible $250,000 maximum fine.

ATF conducted the investigation with the assistance of the Laredo Police Department. Assistant U.S. Attorney April Ayers-Perez is prosecuting the case.

An indictment is a formal accusation of criminal conduct, not evidence.
A defendant is presumed innocent unless convicted through due process of law.

Updated July 1, 2020

Firearms Offenses