Friday, May 23, 2014

WI:Update on Open Carrier Mark Hoffman Trial

On 23 July, 2013, Mark J. Hoffman of Somerset, Wisconsin, was arrested for legally openly carrying firearms. The charges were disorderly conduct (DC) and obstructing an officer.   Originally, Mark was told that he was under arrest for "being heavily armed".   Here is the  Gun Watch article.   The County attorney refused to press charges under Wisconsin statues.

Mark Reported to Gun Watch that the charges were indeed dropped.  Then, out of the blue, three weeks later, he was issued two municipal citations from the Somerset Police Department.  Here are Mark's own words:

The St. Croix County DA did not file charges. Almost 3 weeks later I was issued 2 municipal citations via mail from the Somerset Police Dept. One was for Obstruction and the other for Loitering. They are holding my firearms as "Evindice". Trial date for the citations is April 2.

In regards to the stop. I have a Wisconsin Concealed Carry License. I am not required to voluntarily show it to anyone, including police officers. The Officers DID NOT request to see my CCL. Knowledge of my proximity to school grounds was not established until the days after my arrest. Cheif Doug Briggs is trying to make the arrest all about the school when the arrest was really about me upsetting Chief Briggs by asserting my rights and not "Cooperating". He kept repeating that if I simply gave them a little information they would let me on my way. I refused to give up my 4th amendment rights because I was being threatened with arrest. I recorded the the encounter with an audio recorder. If you want to listen to the audio and make your own conclusions let me know.

The trial has now been held with the result that the Municipal court found Mark guilty of "Loitering" and found no foundation for the obstructing charge.  The finding was posted on April, 8th, 2014.   From the Municipal Court:

Mr. Hoffman is being found guilty of citation #08945716,
specifically, ordinance 11-2-6(c1), as I believe the Village has
clearly met their burden of proof.

The fine will be set at $195.90 and is payable within sixty
days. If more time is needed or there is a request for a payment
plan, please contact the Clerk of Court.

The citation #08945717 will be dismissed for lack of foundation.
If either party disagrees with this decision they can appeal the
decision by contacting the Clerk, please be sure to follow the
timeline if appealing.
Mark has appealed the loitering conviction of the Municipal  Court. 

 ©2014 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice is included.
Link to Gun Watch

1 comment:

Unknown said...

Mr Hoffman's trial has been concluded the appeals court has overturned Mark's conviction for loitering. The appellate court found the only reason Mark was cited was because he was engaged in the LAWFUL activity of open carrying a firearm and that Wisconsin's preemption statute 66.0409(6) prohibits one from being convicted of loitering if the sole cause of alarm is carrying a firearm without evidence of criminal or malicious intent.