Federal Crackdown in Yakima County Yields Firearm Seizures and Indictments

3 mins read
FILE PHOTO: Signage is seen at the United States Department of Justice headquarters in Washington, D.C.

Yakima, Washington – Vanessa R. Waldref, United States Attorney for the Eastern District of Washington, announced that a federal Grand Jury has returned indictments charging multiple Yakima residents with federal firearms offenses.

The Indictments are the result of the collaborative efforts of the United States Attorney’s Office, the Department of Homeland Security, Homeland Security Investigations (“HSI”), the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (“ATF”), and the Yakima Police Department (“YPD”), who worked together as part of the U.S. Attorney’s Project Safe Neighborhoods (“PSN”) initiative. PSN is a critical piece of the Department of Justice’s crime reduction efforts. The PSN program focuses on prosecuting individuals who most significantly drive violence in our communities. It supports and fosters partnerships between law enforcement, schools, the faith community, and local community leaders, to prevent and deter future criminal conduct.

In the Eastern District of Washington, U.S. Attorney Waldref has designated Yakima County for this special community-based crime-fighting program, to focus on reducing gang and gun-related violent crime in the Yakima Valley.

United States Attorney Waldref announced the filing of Indictments today against the following Defendants:

• David Hernandez Moreno, also known as “Peanut,” age 26, of Yakima, Washington. Defendant Moreno has prior convictions for Identity Theft, 4th Degree Assault, and Robbery. He was arrested on April 25, 2022, and has been charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm in violation of federal law.

• Julio Armando Chavez-Medina, also known as “Loki,” age 23, of Yakima, Washington. Defendant Chavez-Medina has previously been convicted of Unlawful Possession of a Firearm on three separate occasions. He was arrested on May 13, 2022, and has been charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm in violation of federal law.

Related:  Brooklyn Man Sentenced for Distributing Cocaine Base

• Alberto Pastrana, age 25, of Yakima, Washington. Defendant Pastrana has previously been convicted of 2nd Degree Assault, 3rd Degree Assault, and 4th Degree Assault. He was arrested on May 6, 2022, and has been charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm and possession with the intent to distribute methamphetamine Ibarra has previously been convicted of 1st Degree Burglary and 2nd Degree Assault. He was arrested on June 28, 2022, and has been charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm.

• Juan Carlos Moreno-Oregel, also known as “Bambino,” age 21, of Yakima, Washington. Defendant Moreno-Oregel has previously been convicted of 1st Degree Robbery. He was arrested on June 30, 2022, and has been charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm.

• Ray Jesus Greedy, age 34, of Mabton, Washington. Defendant Greedy has previously been convicted of 4th Degree Assault. He was arrested on June 3, 2022, and has been charged with being a felon in possession of a firearm.

During the arrests in these cases, law enforcement officers recovered seven firearms and three high-capacity magazines. “The heart of the Project Safe Neighborhood initiative is a commitment to keeping our communities in Eastern Washington safe and strong. Our collaborative, focused prosecution efforts are part of the overall community solution to pressing violent crime issues,” said U.S. Attorney Waldref. She went on to commend DHS, ATF, and YPD’s Gang Unit for their dedication to combating gang violence and pursuing violent offenders in the Yakima community. “These arrests and Indictments demonstrate the impact we can have when federal, state, and local law enforcement work together.”

Related:  TOMORROW: United States Attorney’s Office Co-Sponsoring West Virginia Civil and Human Rights Summit

“ATF recognizes the role that firearms play in violent crimes, which affect all of us in the Eastern District,” said ATF Seattle Field Division Special Agent in Charge Jonathan T. McPherson. “The people of Eastern Washington deserve to live in safety. To ensure that they can, we will continue to work with our partners to remove violent offenders and their firearms from our streets.”

“Illegal firearm activity will not be tolerated in our community,” said Special Agent in Charge Robert Hammer, who oversees HSI operations in the Pacific Northwest. “HSI will continue to leverage law enforcement partnerships, to address violence, providing community safety through the dedicated service of our skillful agents.”

“I cannot overstate how important it is to the Yakima Police Department to have such a strong, effective relationship with the U.S. Attorney’s Office,” said Matthew Murray, Chief of the Yakima Police Department. “Indicting those who engage in violence in our community is a powerful tool and sends an even more powerful message. In a perfect world, those involved in violent conduct could find the strength to walk away from that life on their own – but if they will not, the Yakima Police Department will do everything we can to hold them accountable and make the community safer and stronger. U.S. Attorney Waldref and her team are present, proactive, and reliable partners in our focused effort to reduce violent crime, including domestic violence, in the Yakima community, and I thank and commend them.”

These cases are being prosecuted by Tom Hanlon, Rick Burson and Michael Murphy, Assistant United States Attorneys for the Eastern District of Washington.

Related:  Nacogdoches Felon Sentenced for Federal Firearms Violation

An indictment is merely an allegation. All Defendants are presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt in a court of law.

Share your thoughts...