Penticton man gets 18 months for firearm offences | iNFOnews | Thompson-Okanagan's News Source

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Penticton man gets 18 months for firearm offences

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July 17, 2017 - 7:15 PM

PENTICTON - A Penticton man who got himself a shotgun because it “felt cool” was sentenced to 18 months in court today.

Seamus Ronald Alexander Kirby entered guilty pleas to careless use or storage of a firearm and possession of a firearm contrary to order in Penticton court today, July 17.

The charges stem from a police investigation on July 21, 2016, when RCMP received information Kirby was in possession of a shotgun, being stored at the apartment he shared with his girlfriend on Calgary Avenue.

Police observed Kirby and his girlfriend leaving the apartment in the early morning hours of July 21. They drove off in a vehicle which the police stopped, arresting Kirby.

Officers obtained a search warrant and entered Kirby’s apartment, where they found a loaded shotgun with five rounds of ammunition lying on the living room table, as well as a set of brass knuckles.

Kirby originally denied owning the gun, but officers found a cell phone with photos of Kirby posing with the weapon. He eventually confirmed ownership.

Crown prosecutor Kurt Froehlich told court Kirby, who was 24 years old at the time, had an extensive criminal record that included 17 breaches, and nine other convictions for assault and weapons charges.

A pre-sentence report noted Kirby’s history of drug use which included cocaine, methamphetamine and heroin.

Froehlich noted Kirby had been sober since his arrest, telling court Kirby purchased the shotgun because it made him “feel cool.”

He asked Judge Meg Shaw to consider a joint submission of 18 months prison and a three year probation, the maximum allowed, because of Kirby’s “significant risk to re-offend.” He also asked for a no drugs or alcohol and curfew conditions.

Michael Patterson, agent on behalf of Don Skogstad, said his client had “no justifiable reason” for possessing the shotgun, saying his client intended to seek treatment and counselling for his addiction issues, along with his girlfriend, adding they did not intend to stay in Penticton.

“Time has concentrated his mind on a better way forward,” Patterson said.

He only disagreed with the Crown regarding the no drug or alcohol and curfew conditions, asking they not be imposed.

Judge Shaw agreed with the joint submission of 18 months in jail and a three year probationary term. She also agreed not to impose a drug and alcohol ban, but did impose a curfew on Kirby from 10 p.m to 6 a.m.

He also faces a lifetime firearms ban, and $500 in victim surcharge fees.

With credit for time served, Kirby is expected to be released today.

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