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Press Release

Inmate Pleads Guilty to Possessing Weapon at FCI McDowell

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

BLUEFIELD, W.Va. – Alex Barrera, 26, an inmate at the Federal Correctional Institution (FCI) McDowell, pleaded guilty today to possession of a weapon by an inmate of a federal prison.

According to court documents and statements made in court, on April 5, 2022, an FCI McDowell staff member conducting a random pat-down search found a handcrafted weapon commonly known as a “shank” in the waistband of Barrera’s pants. The object was a piece of metal about six and one-half inches long, with one end sharpened to a point and the other end wrapped in cloth and a shoelace as a grip. Barrera admitted to possessing the object and that it was designed and intended to be used as a weapon.

Barrera is scheduled to be sentenced on December 5, 2022, and faces a maximum penalty of five years in prison, three years of supervised release, and a $250,000 fine.

United States Attorney Will Thompson made the announcement and commended the investigative work of the Federal Bureau of Prisons.

Senior United States District Judge David A. Faber presided over the hearing. Assistant United States Attorney Timothy D. Boggess is prosecuting the case.

A copy of this press release is located on the website of the U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of West Virginia. Related court documents and information can be found on PACER by searching for Case No. 1:22-cr-151.





Updated September 12, 2022