Charleston Felon involved in car shooting pleads guilty to federal firearms charge | USAO-SDWV

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CHARLESTON, West Virginia – A man involved in a drive-by shootout on Charleston’s West Side in February 2020 pleaded guilty today to a federal firearms charge. Ronald Edward Tinsley, 49, of Charleston, pleaded guilty to possession of a stolen firearm.

According to the plea agreement and statements made in court, on or around February 25, 2020, Tinsley was driving a vehicle in the West End of Charleston when officers from the Charleston Police Department attempted to arrest him for a traffic offense. In response, Tinsley fled at high speed over several blocks until he crashed into a building in Block 1200 of 6.e Street. As Tinsley exited the vehicle, he kicked a 9x18mm Makarov semi-automatic pistol under the vehicle. This gun had been stolen before and Tinsley knew or had reason to know that it had been stolen at the time he possessed it. Tinsley also admitted that he had been the driver of a vehicle in a drive-by shooting on the West Side of Charleston the night before and that the gun he owned had been used in the shooting by a passenger of the vehicle. Through the use of the National Integrated Ballistic Information Network (NIBIN), law enforcement officers were able to confirm that the shell casings recovered from the shooting scene matched the Makarov pistol Tinsley owned.

Tinsley has a long criminal record to include previous federal convictions related to the distribution of controlled substances, as well as previous convictions of robbery and malicious assault in Kanawha County Circuit Court.

“In partnership with federal, state and local law enforcement agencies, we are using everything at our disposal to eliminate repeat violent offenders from our communities,” said US Attorney Will Thompson. “ATF’s NIBIN technology is an important tool in the law enforcement toolkit and this case demonstrates the value of the ballistic evidence it provides in violent crime investigations. I salute the exceptional investigative work done by the ATF and the Charleston Police Department. ”

“ATF’s NIBIN technology linked a violent criminal to a drive-through shootout in Charleston,” said Special Agent in Charge R. Shawn Morrow of the Louisville Field Division of the ATF. “This technology, used by law enforcement in West Virginia and across the United States, provides critical links between violent street crime and helps secure serious federal charges. By working with law enforcement partners like the Charleston Police Department, ATF task forces protect the public and make West Virginia communities much safer. “

Tinsley faces up to 10 years in prison when sentenced on January 13, 2022.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) and the Charleston Police Department conducted the investigation. Assistant United States Attorney Jeremy B. Wolfe is handling the prosecution.

United States District Judge Joseph R. Goodwin presided over the hearing.

This case was made possible by investigative leads generated by the National Integrated Ballistic Information Network (NIBIN) of the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF). NIBIN is the only national network that enables the capture and comparison of ballistic evidence to help solve and prevent violent crime involving firearms. NIBIN is a proven investigative and intelligence tool that can link firearms from multiple crime scenes, enabling law enforcement to quickly disrupt firing cycles. For more information on NIBIN, visit https://www.atf.gov/firearms/national-integrated-ballistic-information-network-nibin.

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), the centerpiece of the Department of Justice’s violent crime reduction efforts. PSN is an evidence-based program that has been shown to be effective in reducing violent crime. Through PSN, a wide range 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 its enforcement efforts on the most violent offenders and partners with local prevention and reintegration programs for sustainable crime reduction.

A copy of this press release can be found on the website of the United States Attorney’s Office for the Southern District of West Virginia. Court documents and related information can be found on PACER by searching for the case number. 2: 20-cr-00133.

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