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Press Release

St. Albans Man Pleads Guilty to Federal Firearms Charge

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

CHARLESTON, W.Va. – A St. Albans man pled guilty to a federal firearms charge, announced United States Attorney Mike Stuart.  Dakota Zachary Williams, 24, pled guilty to possession of a firearm by a felon before Senior United States District Judge John T. Copenhaver, Jr.  Stuart commended the investigation conducted by the St. Albans Police Department, Nitro Police Department, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

At public court hearings, it was established that on January 19, 2019, police stopped Williams for erratic driving in St. Albans.  Williams told an officer that he was swerving because he was rolling a blunt while driving and that he had marijuana in his cup holder.  Investigators searched his SUV and found a loaded pistol under the driver’s seat and marijuana.  They arrested Williams and found that he was carrying more marijuana, various pills, and around 3 grams of methamphetamine.

Further, on February 12, 2019, police arrested Williams again in the parking lot of Walmart in Nitro, where Williams had shoplifted an item.  On scene, investigators recovered another loaded pistol from Williams’ pocket and a box ammunition.

Williams had previously been convicted for felony wanton endangerment in 2016 and his right to possess a firearm was not restored.  He faces up to 10 years in federal prison when he is sentenced on September 11, 2019.  Assistant United States Attorney Drew O. Inman is handling the prosecution.

This case is being prosecuted as part of the Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN) program, 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 June 11, 2019

Firearms Offenses
Project Safe Neighborhoods