In a news conference held at the Warren County Courthouse on Monday morning, District Attorney Ricky Smith announced that his office will be collaborating with the U.S. Attorney’s Office in order to gain access to federal resources and ensure the most efficient and effective prosecution of cases involving violent crime and drug trafficking.
Darren LaMarca, the Acting U.S. Attorney for the Southern District of Mississippi, attended the conference to show his support for the collaboration and introduce representatives of various federal agencies that would be able to assist in cases when necessary, including the Federal Bureau of Investigations and Drug Enforcement Administration.
“I’m very excited about this partnership between the U.S. Attorney’s Office and the District Attorney’s Office,” said Warren County Sheriff Martin Pace. “We are looking to move forward with this and hopefully reduce some of the violent repeat offenders that are plaguing not only this community but others.”
“As my investigators are in the field investigating these cases, the investigation will be no different than investigations in the past but with this partnership I feel the results will be much better when there are cases where the federal statutes are more applicable to the facts and circumstances than the state statutes are,” Pace continued.
Vicksburg Police Chief Penny Jones was unable to attend the conference, but expressed similar hopes for the positive impact the partnership will have on reducing crime on our community.
“Our agency is looking forward to working with the U.S. Attorney’s Office and with our surrounding agencies. The Vicksburg Police Department will now send our possession and stolen weapons charges along with others to the U.S. Attorney’s Office for federal prosecution. District Attorney Ricky Smith is doing a great job prosecuting our gun cases. We are just wanting to step it up a notch,” said Chief Jones. “There has been such an increase of charges dealing with stolen hand guns and felons in possession of hand guns. We are just going to have to show those who chose to go this route that we are serious about prosecution. Just know if you’re charged with this crime you will pay with your time.”