CHARLESTON – Tennis Melvin Maynard, the man accused and indicted for shooting and killing Mingo County Sheriff Eugene Crum on April 3rd of this year has been indicted by a federal grand jury on ten counts related to illegally obtaining firearms by falsifying information on Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF) Form 4473 between the dates of March 7, 2010 and December 6, 2011.
The first purchase of a handgun made by Maynard was on March 7, 2010, and occurred directly after he was discharged from a mental institution where he had been medically treated since his court ordered admission date on Feb. 10, 2010. A Smith and Wesson .40 caliber pistol was purchased from Gander Mountain, a nationwide chain sporting goods store, located in the South Ridge Shopping Plaza in S. Charleston. Maynard represented on a Department of Justice ATF Form that he had never been committed to a mental institution.
On Oct. 7, 2010, the defendant purchased a second firearm from Gander Mountain, identified as a Walther, 380 pistol. Once again, Maynard falsified the ATF Form by answering no when asked if he had ever been committed to a mental institution. The third gun was purchased on Dec. 7, 2010 at B&B Loans, located in Logan. The gun was said to be a Glock Model 27, .40 caliber pistol, the firearm allegedly used in the slaying of Sheriff Crum.
Maynard then applied to purchase a fourth handgun at Johnny’s Gun and Pawn located in Huntington on Oct. 11, 2011, but his request was denied when he failed the background check due to the information pertaining to his mental institution commitment being entered properly into the national database. The defendant made one more attempt to purchase a gun on Dec. 6, 2011 at Gander Mountain but was denied for the same reasons. Maynard had checked no on both applications when asked if he had ever been committed to a mental institution.
Count nine and ten stem from the two guns (a Smith and Wesson .40 caliber pistol and a Glock, Model 27, .40 caliber pistol) being in his possession when he was captured following his alleged fleeing from the crime scene on 3rd Avenue in Williamson where he stands accused of firing two shots at close range, striking Sheriff Crum in the head and fatally wounding him.
A Form 4473 is an application that an individual must complete when a firearm is purchased from a federally licensed firearms dealer. Making a false statement on this form is a felony. The indictment alleges that Maynard possessed a firearm on five separate occasions. At all of the times the defendant allegedly possessed a firearm, he had previously been committed to a mental institution. Maynard now faces up to 75 years in prison if he is convicted of these federal crimes.
U.S. Attorney Booth Goodwin remarked about the recent indictment and stated that his office remains thoroughly committed to keeping guns out of the hands of individuals who cannot legally have them.
The investigation is being conducted by the ATF. Assistant United States Attorney Steven Lowe is in charge of the prosecution. The case is being brought as part of Project Safe Neighborhoods, which is a nationwide commitment to reduce gun crime in the United States by networking existing local programs targeting gun crime.
Further updates on this case will be released to the public as they become available.
(Editor’s Note: The charges contained in the indictment are merely accusations, and the defendant is presumed innocent unless and until proven guilty.)