YOUNGSTOWN, Ohio (WKBN) – Reports said when Charles Wimphrie was pulled over by police Wednesday for an improper turn, he answered “no,” when asked if he had any guns in the car he was driving.
It turns out he not only had two guns, according to reports, but dozens of rounds of ammunition, including 119 rounds of 9mm ammunition alone.
Wimphrie, 29, of Shehy Street, was booked into the Mahoning County jail on Wednesday on charges of improper handling of a firearm in a motor vehicle, a fourth degree felony, and two fifth degree felony counts of possession of drugs.
Jail records show Wimphrie has posted $9,000 bond, which includes $4,000 on the gun charge and $2,500 for each of the drug charges. He is expected to be arraigned Friday in municipal court.
Officers with the Neighborhood Response Unit pulled over a BMW Wimphrie was driving about 4 p.m. in the 2000 block of Summer Street for an improper turn.
When an officer walked up to the front door to talk to Wimphrie, reports said he saw a box behind the driver’s seat that had several magazines for guns and could also smell marijuana through the open window.
Wimphire was asked if he had any guns and reports said he turned around to look in the back seat before saying, “no.” When he was asked to step out of the car officers said they saw the butt end of a handgun sticking out of his pockets and he was immediately arrested. He then told police he had an AR-15 in the car also.
The gun in his pockets was a 9mm semiautomatic pistol loaded with a 15-round magazine, reports said. A container Wimphrie had on him also had four bags that held a combined 108 pills, reports said.
In the cup holder in the driver’s side door reports said police found an extended magazine loaded with 31 rounds of 9mm ammunition. In the box behind the seat were two more extended magazines each loaded with 31 rounds of 9mm ammunition and an additional 9mm magazine loaded with 11 rounds.
The AR-15 was also found in the back seat with a loaded magazine and two more AR-15 loaded magazines were found in the box, reports said. Police also found five empty magazines and a bulletproof vest, reports said.
The arrest is the third gun arrest by NRU officers in two days. In June, police made 22 gun arrests. For the year, they have made 87 gun arrests total, with 48 of those charges being for improper handling of a firearm in a motor vehicle.
For all of 2020 the city had 102 gun arrests.
In 2021, 61 people have been shot, 15 of them fatally. In 2020 at this time, 44 people had been shot including 14 of 15 homicide victims. The city had a total of 28 homicides in 2020.
The Neighborhood Response Unit was formed in May as a response to several shootings in the city. It is made up of five officers who all worked patrol beats on the South Side who excelled in making gun arrests.
“These young officers have yielded such amazing results in such a short period of time,” said Staff Inspector Lt. Brian Butler, who helped select the officers for the unit. “No one could guess how many violent crimes and homicides they have prevented by taking so many guns off the streets and out of the hands of dangerous criminals.”