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Press Release

Charleston Man Pleads Guilty to Federal Firearms Charge

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

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – A Charleston man pled guilty to a federal firearms charge, said United States Attorney Mike Stuart.  Michael D. Williams, 49, pled guilty to being a felon in possession of a firearm.  Williams was on supervised release for a prior federal conviction for conspiracy to commit arson.  The investigation was conducted by the Charleston Police Department, with assistance from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

“Defendants like Williams increase the recidivism rate,” said United States Attorney Mike Stuart.  “And these are the types of crimes, committed by violent, repeat offenders that are the focus of  our Project Safe Neighborhoods initiative.”

On October 13, 2018, Williams got in an altercation at the Transit Mall in downtown Charleston and pulled a firearm on an individual.  An officer from the Charleston Police Department witnessed the altercation and arrested Williams.

Williams faces up to 10 years in prison on the felon in possession charge and an additional 24 months in prison for the supervised released violation when he is sentenced on March 14, 2019.

United States District Judge John T. Copenhaver, Jr. presided over the plea hearing.  Assistant United States Attorney Steve Loew is handling the prosecution.

Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN) 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.


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Updated December 20, 2018

Firearms Offenses
Project Safe Neighborhoods