This week, it was announced that 55-year-old William E. Tyler of Fairfield, Pennsylvania had pleaded guilty to the illegal transfer and possession of a machine gun. Tyler once served as the Chief of Police in Taneytown, Maryland. According to the guilty plea, the defendant transferred two machine guns owned by and registered to the Taneytown Police Department to himself and another officer for their personal use in 2017.
Tyler did not attempt to report the transfer of the machine guns to the ATF’s National Firearms Act Division. Search warrants were executed at the residences of Tyler and the officer on January 15, 2019. At that time, the machine guns were recovered. Tyler was interviewed by the FBI and ATF. He was warned that it was a crime to make a materially false statement or representation to federal agents.
Nevertheless, Tyler lied by telling agents that he never fired the machine gun and didn’t know it was automatic. Tyler will forfeit assets obtained as a result of or used to facilitate the commission of his illegal activities. This includes the two machine guns. Tyler also faces a maximum sentence of 10 years in prison.