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Indiana man admits illegally selling fireworks after probe into Ohio man’s death

by Sep 15, 2022Local News

An Indiana man could be sentenced to up to 10 years in prison after he pleaded guilty Wednesday in federal court to illegally selling display fireworks that authorities say were linked to the death of an Ohio man in 2020.

The U.S. Attorney’s Office for the Southern Ohio says DiPaul Eberhard, 66, of Shelbyville, Ind., pleaded guilty in U.S. District Court to distributing explosive materials to a person without a permit or license.

On July 4, 2020, Glenn Powell, 63, of Mt. Healthy, Ohio, was killed after he was struck in the head by a display firework, prosecutors say. Authorities investigating Powell’s death learned he had bought the fireworks from Eberhard, prosecutors say.

Display fireworks are contain large amounts of flash powder and are much larger than consumer fireworks. Under federal law, a person must have license from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms or a permit to receive or use display fireworks.

While Eberhard had a permit from ATF to sell display fireworks, Powell did not have a license or permit to purchase them, prosecutors say. Eberhard reportedly admitted he illegally sold display fireworks in 2020.

As part of maintaining his permit from 2008 until 2021, Eberhard repeatedly acknowledged it was illegal for him to distribute explosive materials to anyone who is not an ATF explosives licensee or permittee, prosecutors say.

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