Possession of a Weapon in a Public Building
The Defendant was charged with a single count of possession of a weapon in a public building, a felony. The charge arose after The Defendant was in a verbal altercation with another individual. This altercation took place in a driveway leading up to a public building. The Defendant retrieved his firearm from his vehicle when the other individual had become increasingly aggressive. There was no evidence The Defendant had used the firearm in any fashion besides drawing attention to it to stop the altercation from escalating. The Defendant pled guilty to a misdemeanor and was given community work service.
This was a hard case. The law prohibited having a firearm on "grounds adjacent" to public buildings. My client had arrived at the school to pick up his daughter when he and another person got into an argument. The other guy began getting increasingly physical and so my client retrieved his firearm from his car so that the other guy could see it. The gun was never pointed in a threatening manner. The other guy called the police and my client was charged with the above offense. Unfortunately, our chance at trial was not optimistic because the language of the law appeared to clearly prohibit my client from having a firearm at the location he was. My client sought to avoid getting convicted of a felony but the DA was unwillingly to agree to reduce the charge to a misdemeanor. We proposed having a judicial settlement conference where we were able to convince a judge that my client was deserving of misdemeanor treatment. With the judge agreeing to misdemeanor treatment my client opted to plead to the charge and avoided becoming a felon.
Jackson County, Oregon
Actual Case Summaries
Be advised that I never promise a client a particular outcome, details of prior cases should not be taken as an indication that other clients will necessarily see the same results.