HUNTINGTON A 51-year-old suspect in an October 2020 shootout with Huntington Police has been charged in federal magistrate court with a firearms violation.
Federal authorities obtained a warrant for Thomas Ray III on a sole charge of being a felon in possession of a firearm, in connection with an Oct. 23, 2020, shooting in the alley between 10th and 11th Avenues in Huntington, according to court records.
Huntington Police were called to the scene at 11 p.m. after a woman reported a man pulled a gun on her, threatened to shoot her, and then fired two rounds in the air, a federal complaint states.
When officers caught up to Ray in the 1600 block of 10th Avenue, federal court records show he booked it between houses. Officers tracked him along Doulton Avenue, pinpointing him in the alleyway, records show.
Ray fired a gun at the officers when they shined a flashlight on him, striking a fence next to them, according to the complaint.
Officers took cover and reported they'd been shot at, records show. Ray fired at them again, making his way down to Doulton Avenue, the complaint states.
When Ray fired at officers again, patrolmen returned fire, landing a round in his leg, according to reports at the time of the incident.
Federal records show when officers closed in Ray, he held his gun up before tossing it away.
In addition to the .40-caliber Smith and Wesson Ray is accused of firing at officers with, police also found a revolver tucked in his pocket, records show.
It turns out, Ray is a convicted felon and is prohibited from possessing a firearm — and it isn't the first time he's been hit with federal gun charges in Huntington, either.
Back in February 2013, court records show Ray had broken parole in Illinois and come to Huntington, according to court records.
A docket in Will County, Illinois, shows Ray was indicted in 2010 on a six-count indictment charging him with armed violence, forcible/armed detention, giving a false bomb/gas threat, aggravated unlawful restraint and obstruction in Joliet.
The case was tied up through much of 2011 due to concerns about Ray’s competency, the dockets show. He eventually pleaded guilty in February 2012 in exchange for four charges being dropped and was sentenced to serve three years in prison, with 436 days credited due to being held in pretrial detention.
Following his release on parole five months later, Ray made his way to Huntington — he'd been bouncing between the Jewel City, Detroit and Chicago since 2006 — thus breaking his Illinois parole, records show.
The Great Lakes Regional Fugitive Task Force contacted U.S. Marshals in Huntington in February 2013 as being in the area, records show. A U.S. Marshal tracked Ray down to the 2100 block 9th Avenue, finding him with a .40-caliber Glock in his waistband and a shotgun underneath his bed, records show.
That resulted in a federal indictment, to which he pleaded guilty in November of that year.
Ray’s defense attorney wrote in a sentencing memorandum his client had possessed the guns due to fear of being attacked — the attorney argued Ray had absconded in Illinois due to threats received by his grandmother.
U.S. District Court Judge Robert Chambers wasn't having it — he threw the book at Ray, sentencing him to serve 78 months in the federal clink.
Ray is being held at the Western Regional Jail in Barboursville.
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