U.S. Attorney Brady Announces Record Number of Prosecutions for Western District of Pennsylvania

| November 2, 2019

PITTSBURGH, Pa. – Scott W. Brady, United States Attorney for the Western District of Pennsylvania, on Friday announced that the number of cases being prosecuted by the district reached an all-time record high in FY 2019.

From October 1, 2018 through September 30, 2019, the office filed cases against 665 defendants, an increase of 46% versus 2016. The total number of drug defendants prosecuted reached 309, an 83% increase over 2016. The total number firearms defendants prosecuted was 125, a 19% increase versus 2016. All numbers represent the most defendants prosecuted in any one year in the history of the Western District of Pennsylvania.

“I have made reducing violent crime and attacking the opioid epidemic two of the top priorities for our office, and our efforts are clearly showing results,” said U.S. Attorney Brady. “The increase in prosecutions of our district’s most violent offenders and drug traffickers, including those who wear lab coats, is having a direct and positive effect on the declining amount of reported firearms-related violence and deadly opioid overdoses.”

According to the FBI Uniform Crime Report, in western Pennsylvania, the 2018 statistics show that firearms-related violence (murders, robberies and assaults committed with a firearm) fell 19% for the 25 counties comprising the Western District of Pennsylvania versus 2017, including a 25% reduction in Allegheny County, a 10% reduction in Erie County, a 39% reduction in Washington County and a 14% reduction in Westmoreland County. Firearms-related violent crime fell 32% in the City of Pittsburgh.

A dramatic decrease in overdose deaths in western Pennsylvania also occurred in 2018. According to data reported by OverdoseFreePA, opioid overdose deaths decreased 37% throughout the 25 counties in the Western District of Pennsylvania versus 2017. This includes significant decreases in the counties most impacted by the crisis, including 50% in Beaver and Butler Counties, 47% in Fayette County, 41% in Allegheny County, 37% in Westmoreland County, 35% in Erie County, 30% in Cambria County, and 23% in Washington County.

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