Instead of just enjoying fireworks while celebrating Independance Day, a Seattle man was arrested, suspected of firing off an AK-47 assault rifle. And, because the man has previous criminal convictions, he is now facing multiple charges in connection with the celebratory gunfire.
The 29-year-old man was held in King County Jail on $50,000 bail for the July 4 incident.
Two police officers were on patrol in west Seattle at about 11:30 p.m. when they heard six to eight rapid-fire gunshots nearby. As the officers drove toward the sound of the gunfire, witnesses called 911 to report seeing a man firing a weapon at an apartment complex. The officers found the man holding the rifle and he admitted to firing the weapon to celebrate.
He was arrested on suspicion of discharging a firearm and reckless endangerment, but he was booked into jail for investigation of unlawful possession of a firearm after police learned he had prior convictions for burglary, theft of a firearm and attempted unlawful possession of a firearm. As a result of the prior convictions, he is prohibited from possessing guns.
A person is guilty of unlawful possession of a firearm in the first degree, if they own, have in their possession, or have in their control any firearm after having previously been convicted or found not guilty by reason of insanity of any serious offense. Unlawful possession of a firearm in the first degree is a Class B felony punishable by up to 10 years in prison, or a fine of up to $25,000, or both.
A person is guilty of reckless endangerment when he or she recklessly engages in conduct that does not amount to a drive-by shooting, but that creates a substantial risk of death or serious physical injury to another person.
- Aims any firearm, whether loaded or not, at or towards any human being;
- Willfully discharges any firearm, air gun or other weapon, or throws any deadly missile in a public place, or in any place where any person might be endangered; or
- Sets a so-called trap, spring pistol, rifle or other dangerous weapon.
Both reckless endangerment and aiming or discharging a firearm are gross misdemeanors, punishable by up to a year in jail, or a fine of no more than $5,000, or both.
No matter the crime, every defendant has a right to representation by a qualified attorney. If you have been arrested and face criminal charges, call the Seattle law office of Steve Karimi at (206) 621-8777 or contact him online.