YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) — An assistant prosecutor said two men arrested on gun charges Tuesday during a traffic stop are suspects in at least one revenge shooting in the city.
Ty Lend Lewis, 19, of East Judson Avenue and Isiah Helms, 21, of Oregon Avenue, were each booked into the Mahoning County jail on charges of improper handling of a firearm in a motor vehicle.
Lewis and Helms were given a recognizance bond by Visiting Magistrate Dino Prossinos and released under the supervision of the Mahoning County pretrial services program, which was the recommendation by the pretrial services program for both.
Assistant City Prosecutor Gene Fehr asked for $4,000 bonds for both men, saying both are suspects in recent shootings involving revenge as a motive, but he was overruled both times by the magistrate.
Helms said he was going to follow the pretrial rules.
“I ain’t ever coming back here,” Helms said. “It’s my first and last [time].”
Neither man has a prior criminal record.
Last week city Law Director Jeffrey Limbian said prosecutors would be asking for bonds for people arrested on gun offenses who are suspects in other gun related crimes.
The improper handling charge is a fourth degree felony and often the bond is no more than $5,000.
The city has seen 61 people shot this year, an increase from this time last year when 44 people were shot.
There are 15 homicides this year, as compared to 15 at this time last year, 14 of those by gunfire.
The two were passengers in a car police pulled over about 5:45 p.m. at Canfield and Rogers roads for excessive window tint. Reports said the driver of the car did not have a license or insurance and gave officers consent to search the car.
When asked if he had anything illegal, reports said Helms told police he had a gun and asked if he was going to jail. Reports did not say if officers answered.
After all three men were out of the car police searched it and found a loaded 9mm handgun with an extended magazine inside a backpack and another loaded 9mm handgun underneath the passenger’s seat.
Reports said the guns were within reach of both Lewis and Helms.