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Justice News

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

Wednesday, March 18, 2015

Charleston man who impersonated United States Marshal sentenced in federal court

CHARLESTON, W. Va. -  United States Attorney Booth Goodwin announced that John E. Swain II, 52, of Charleston, West Virginia was sentenced by United States District Judge Thomas Johnston to three years of probation for impersonating a federal law enforcement officer.  On April 14, 2014, Swain chased a Ford Explorer on I-77, while the passenger in Swain’s car waived a badge that appeared to belong to a United States Marshal.  The driver of the Ford Explorer was an undercover Kanawha County Detective.  When the Detective pulled over at the Greenbrier Street exit, Swain sped away.  The Detective followed Swain and directed him to stop.  When the Detective approached the car, Swain claimed he was a United States Marshal from Richmond, Virginia.  Swain advised that he asked his passenger to waive the badge because the Detective was driving too fast and Swain wanted him to slow down. The Detective contacted the United States Marshal in Richmond and learned that Swain had never been employed with the federal law enforcement agency.  When confronted, Swain admitted that he had lied to avoid arrest for impersonating a federal officer.  Swain claimed that he bought the fake badge on the internet.

The United States Marshal Service and the Kanawha County Sheriff’s Department conducted the investigation.  Assistant United States Attorney Erik S. Goes was responsible for the prosecution.

Updated March 18, 2015