There is a certain mental checklist that a man goes through before he leaves a public restroom. Flush? Check. Zipped? Check. Hands washed? Yes, aggressively with standard pink liquid soap. Loaded weapon capable of fatal consequences if placed in the wrong hands? Safely in its holster. One of the members of the Austin police department failed to complete this essential list of questions before exiting the men's room at the Blackwell-Thurman Criminal Justice Center and he left his service weapon in the bathroom. There are never any questionable characters hanging out around a courtroom! What possibly could have gone wrong?
This is not the first time in recent months that an Austin cop has been careless with his weapon. As I wrote about on this blog back in July, another member of the force left his loaded gun at a playground to be discovered by a group of mothers and their young children. This dangerous trend of leaving guns behind like some loose change that slips out of a pocket is certainly a problem that needs to be addressed by those in authority at the police department. Sean Mannix, commander of the organized crime division, said that an internal investigation into the matter is underway.
The careless cop, identified by an attorney at the scene as Jason Bryant, was at the court house to testify in a narcotics case. And, I am pleased to report that his day was not all bad. Sure, he endangered the lives of countless innocents by leaving his deadly weapon in open access for possible evil uses. On the other hand, though, the defendant in the case for which Officer Bryant was testifying was convicted and sentenced to two and a half years. I guess the day could be considered a wash!
If you find a gun that has been abandoned by a police officer and decide to use the weapon in an illegal way (which would be doing absolutely anything with it), you may find yourself in need of an criminal defense attorney. The firm of Bertolino LLP has attorneys in Austin, Houston and San Antonio ready to help you. Please contact us today.
Friday, September 26, 2008
Posted by Tony R. Bertolino, Esq. at 2:49 PM