Brian Downey, deputy mayor of a small New York town, is facing more than 100 criminal charges after authorities said they found a stash of weapons and fake police credentials at his house.

Homeland Security agents and Rockland County police raided Downey’s Airmont home in September, after customs officials said he’d received an illegal gun silencer in the mail. At the house, law enforcement said they found a trove of guns and phony FBI badges. 

Downey, 47, was a deputy building inspector for the town of Ramapo, a part-time court officer and a village trustee before his arrest, according to local reports.

He was already served federal charges before Rockland County officials indicted him again on Friday. He had been released on bail for the federal charges, but it’s not clear when he’ll be arraigned in a local court. 

He has denied the charges.

Brian Downey was a deputy building inspector in Ramapo, New York before a federal raid allegedly turned up illegal weapons
Brian Downey was a deputy building inspector in Ramapo, New York before a federal raid allegedly turned up illegal weapons and fake police badges/ Photo credit: Town of Ramapo

Police Find Weapons Stash, Fake Badges

Federal investigators said they were first tipped off by U.S. Customs and Border Protection officials, who said they intercepted a gun silencer in the mail bound for Downey’s home. The package was reportedly labeled as a motorcycle part.

Authorities soon found that other, similar packages were delivered to Downey’s address. They received court approval for a search of his home and executed the raid on Sept. 2, according to reports

There, Rockland County District Attorney Thomas Walsh said, federal and county police found 12 gun silencers, 19 assault rifles, and almost 100 high-capacity magazines, as well as “numerous” fake federal and state law enforcement insignia. 

In the criminal complaint filed the day after the raid, Homeland Security agent Daniel Suden wrote that police found the weapons first, many of them on display on the wall in the so-called gun room. 

“He stated that he lacked any registration or authorization for controlled firearms, such as the short-barrel rifle or the sawed-off shotgun,” the agent said.

Federal agents said many of the weapons at the home of Brian Downey were on display in the 'gun room.'
Federal agents said many of the weapons at the home of Brian Downey were on display in the ‘gun room.’ He’s facing 117 firearms charges. Photo credit: Department of Justice

After that, Suden said, he found a “small square lock box with both a key and combination face.” 

“I asked Brian Downey […] for the combination for the lock box, and Downey stated that he did not have the combination,” the agent wrote. 

Suden said he opened the box to find fake badges for the Drug Enforcement Administration, the U.S. Marshals Service, the Bureau of Prisons and the FBI — some of them bearing Downey’s name and photo. 

Federal agents said they found these and more fake police credentials at the home of Brian Downey.
Federal agents said they found these and more fake police credentials at the home of Brian Downey, along with unlicensed weapons. He was indicted on 120 charges last week. Photo credit: Department of Justice

Brian Downey Facing Prison Time

Based on the findings of the September raid, Rockland County prosecutors charged Downey Friday with 117 counts of criminal possession of a weapon and three counts for owning forged documents, all of which are felonies. 

He was previously charged with one count of possession of unregistered firearms and one count of possession of federal badges and identification cards by federal prosecutors. Downey was suspended from his position as a deputy building inspector, but remains officially a village trustee, local news outlets said. 

He was released from federal custody on $250,000 personal recognizance bond after turning over his passport and agreeing not to obtain more firearms, according to reports. 

If convicted, the state and the federal charges could combine for a hefty prison sentence for the deputy mayor. 

Through his defense team, Downey has denied the charges, despite what agents wrote in the complaint. Local reports indicate his lawyers may be angling for a plea bargain to avoid trial by a federal judge.

It’s not clear when Downey will be arraigned by county officials for the 120 charges he was indicted on last week.