HOUSTON – A 31-year-old local man has been indicted for carjacking and illegally possessing and discharging a firearm, announced U.S. Attorney Jennifer B. Lowery.
Today, a federal grand jury returned the three-count indictment against Zachary Smith, Houston. Previously in state custody on related charges, he is expected to make his initial appearance before a U.S. magistrate judge on the federal indictment in the near future.
The charges allege that on Feb. 6, Smith discharged a firearm while stealing a vehicle from the parking lot of a washateria on Melbourne Drive. He was also allegedly involved in a shooting Feb. 7 on the 2000 block of Broadway Street. On that day, Smith led law enforcement in a pursuit that came to an end when he crashed into a patrol unit, according to the charges.
The indictment alleges his is a previous felon and is prohibited from possessing firearms per federal law.
If convicted, Smith faces up to life for discharging the firearm during a crime of violence, 15 years for the carjacking and a maximum of 10 years for being a felon in possession of a firearm.
The FBI conducted the investigation with the assistance of the Texas Department of Public Safety, Houston Police Department and Harris County Sherriff’s Office. Assistant U.S. Attorney Britni Cooper is prosecuting the case.
An indictment is a formal accusation of criminal conduct, not evidence. A defendant is presumed innocent unless convicted through due process of law.