|Charge related to purchase of firearms|
Friday, July 26, 2013
A Rocky Mount Police Department officer and another man have been indicted on gun charges.
Patrolman James Marion Slate, 25, of Rocky Mount has been charged with one count of conspiracy to make straw purchases of firearms, according to U.S. Attorney Timothy J. Heaphy in the Western District of Virginia in Roanoke.
Another man, David Carson Haskins, 57, of Henry County was charged with 18 counts of making false statements to a licensed firearms dealer in relation to the purchase of a firearm as well as one count of conspiracy to make straw purchases of firearms.
Both were indicted by a federal grand jury in Roanoke.
Rocky Mount Police Chief David Cundiff said Slate has been with the department since May 2012.
The routine procedure for the Rocky Mount Police Department in cases involving an indictment is suspension without pay.
Each defendant faces a maximum possible penalty of up to five years in prison on the conspiracy charge. In addition, Haskins faces a maximum possible penalty of up to 10 years on 10 counts of making false statements to a licensed firearms dealer and a maximum possible penalty of up to five years on the remaining eight counts of making false statements, Heaphy said in a press release.
An indictment is only a charge and not evidence of guilt. The defendant is entitled to a fair trial with the burden on the government to prove guilt beyond a reasonable doubt.