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Department of Justice

U.S. Attorney's Office
Middle District of Florida
Roger B. Handberg, United States Attorney
For Immediate Release
Monday, December 4, 2023

Tampa Man Charged in Connection with Armed Robbery

TAMPA, Fla. — U.S. Attorney Roger B. Handberg announces the unsealing of a criminal complaint charging Brandale Swails, 29, Tampa, with Hobbs Act Robbery. If convicted, Swails faces a maximum penalty of 20 years in federal prison.

According to the complaint, on Oct. 15, Swails entered a gas station, pointed a firearm at the victim’s head and demanded the victim open the cash register. The victim immediately hid behind the counter. Swails jumped over the counter towards the victim while continuing to point the firearm at him. Swails told the victim he would shoot him if the victim did not open the register. Swails then took the cash and fled. Hours later, law enforcement officers found Swails driving a vehicle. When officers attempted to pull him over, Swails fled. On Oct. 31, Swails was arrested inside a home, hiding in a closet. Two loaded firearms were found in his possession.

A criminal complaint is merely a formal charge that a defendant has committed one or more violations of federal criminal law, and every defendant is presumed innocent unless, and until, proven guilty.

This case was investigated by the Hillsborough County Sheriff’s Office and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. It will be prosecuted by Assistant U.S. Attorney Diego F. Novaes.

This case is part of Project Safe Neighborhoods (PSN), a program bringing together all levels of law enforcement and the communities they serve to reduce violent crime and gun violence, and to make out neighborhoods safer for everyone. On May 26, 2021, the Department of Justice launched a violent crime reduction strategy strengthening PSN based on these core principles: fostering trust and legitimacy in our communities, supporting community-based organizations that help prevent violence from occurring in first place, setting focused and strategic enforcement priorities, and measuring the results.


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