I am writing in response to the article printed in the Daily Sun News on Friday, June 26, titled “Granger’s top cop gets his firearms returned.”
I was not asked by anyone from the Daily Sun about the petitioner’s position. And, unlike others within the media world, the Daily Sun felt it appropriate to name the victim in the case, which is disheartening on a number of levels.
The reality of the situation is that the petitioner won this hearing. The judge found there was a pattern of willful conduct which annoyed and harassed without lawful purpose, and that caused substantial emotional distress. In fact, the court quickly and unequivocally decided against Mr. Perales.
With respect to firearms, a high burden of proof must be met before the court can restrict the constitutional right to bear arms. The burden of proof at play here is clear and convincing, which is the same standard used by the state to take children away from their parents. Mr. Perales was given his firearms back under state law.
Though I think this burden is appropriate when considering limiting an individual’s constitutionally protected rights, it carries no weight when determining whether or not an individual committed unlawful harassment.
I have nothing but good things to say about opposing counsel on this case. Mr. Pickett was professional and is an incredible lawyer.
However, I have nothing but negative things to say about the reporting on this matter by the local media. The media seems to be entirely focused on Chief Perales’ firearms, which was really a side issue. My client is now protected by court order, which is exactly what we set out to do. To put it simply, the court agreed with my client.
/s/ Alex Newhouse