Most of the people who get arrested and charged with a criminal offense in the Cincinnati area will face state charges under Ohio’s criminal laws. However, some people facing criminal charges can wind up facing federal criminal offenses for things that happen in the Cincinnati region.
Federal criminal charges are often the result of interstate criminal activity or investigations by federal law enforcement agencies like the Drug Enforcement Administration or the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
Still, there are situations where an individual winds up facing federal criminal charges despite the fact that state law enforcement officers managed the initial arrest and investigation. It is rare, but it does happen. A young man from the Dayton area will go down in history as the first person in the area to face federal murder charges.
Why did this case result in federal charges instead of state charges?
On the surface, this January shooting seems like a tragic but relatively run-of-the-mill crime. The accused individual, a 19-year-old young man, made arrangements to sell a large amount of marijuana. However, the intent of the buyers was never to pay.
The young man facing charges faced a group of four men who intended to rob him. Things went poorly during the attempted transaction on January 21, 2020. The young man now facing federal charges had brought a firearm and ended up using it during the altercation.
The involvement of several pounds of drugs in this case and the intention to distribute those drugs for profit instead of to use them for personal purposes are likely part of what motivated federal charges instead of state charges.
Complicating factors demand careful consideration
This case could seem like a clear self-defense situation, but the use of a firearm in conjunction with the possession or sale of illegal or prohibited drugs complicates the situation. Complicating factors can make something that doesn’t seem like a crime into a serious offense.
Anyone facing serious criminal charges, whether they stem from an alleged violent offense or possession of drugs, will need to look carefully at the evidence collected and the charges they face. Knowing the law, as well as how other similar cases have turned out, can help you better strategize to defend yourself against pending charges.