November 15th, 2006 12:37 PM
Mayor busted for carrying on college campus and church
JACKSON, Miss. — Mayor Frank Melton, who has taken a hard stand against the city's rising crime rate, pleaded guilty Wednesday to three misdemeanor weapons charges, avoiding possible jail time on a felony and removal from office.
Melton was given a six-month suspended sentence on each count, one year probation on each count and fined a total of $1,500.
The first-term mayor was accused of carrying a gun onto the campus of the Mississippi College School of Law on Feb. 28, a felony. He also was accused of two felony counts of carrying a concealed weapon into a church.
Under state law, a felony conviction would have forced Melton from office and could have sent him to prison for as long as three years.
Melton stood and acknowledged the agreement more than 90 minutes after the scheduled start of his trial. A jury had been selected on Tuesday.
The former Jackson television station executive and one-time state drug enforcement agency chief was elected on a tough-on-crime platform. He has drawn national attention for his unconventional leadership style _ including taking part in police raids and roadblocks _ in the city of 184,000, which has a crime rate nearly twice the national average
Melton was indicted Sept. 15 by a grand jury convened specifically to hear evidence brought by Mississippi Attorney General Jim Hood and Hinds County District Attorney Faye Peterson.
Peterson later brought unrelated charges against Melton and his two Police Department bodyguards for their alleged role in smashing up a duplex on Aug. 26. Melton has said the home was a drug haven, an allegation the property owners deny. They also have filed a lawsuit against Melton.
A trial is pending in those cases.
The American Civil Liberties Union had accused Melton, who is black, of civil rights violations, including racial profiling.
He was elected mayor with 88 percent of the vote in 2005.
November 15th, 2006 12:46 PM
Right or wrong the Mayor broke the law and must face the consequences just like any other person.
EOD - Initial success or total failure
November 15th, 2006 12:58 PM
Sounds like he screwed the pooch on his own. Disregard for the law is never a good thing, especially if your holding public office.
I had to pick up my nephew from school today because he was sick, before I got into the Jeep I took my pistol out of the hoster and put it in the console since I had to go into the building to get him. Simple as that, if your going to carry you need to obey the laws of the state your in, if you don't, pay the price.
Just remember that shot placement is much more important with what you carry than how big a bang you get with each trigger pull.
Texas CHL Instructor
Texas Hunter Education Instructor
November 15th, 2006 01:01 PM
That's right...get that crime-busting Mayor.
If he is tough on crime, we don't want him on our streets.
Life, liberty, and the pursuit of the ultimate CC gun!
November 15th, 2006 01:09 PM
I can't really blame him for breaking a unconstitutional law that infringes on peoples rights to keep and bear arms...
Although he is most likely a hypocrite who thinks he is special and can carry while others can't...
November 15th, 2006 02:39 PM
there is a bit more to it that this...
He was previously warned that he was not law enforcement and that his carry was illegal. So he was let off then. He then obtained a CHL but he ignored the restrictions. So he got busted.
This is the same Mayor that ran on a pro gun rights platform but then attended the Mayors Gun control conference and has promoted gun ownership restriction legislation. So he is all over the map.
But he was warned, was aware and still then broke the law on purpose.
he made this deal so he would not be convicted of a felony and so that he could stay in office and probably even retain his CHL. If it were you and me we would be convicted felons and in jail.
November 15th, 2006 02:48 PM
Laws apply even to the political elite, as they well should.
One should never confuse good fortune with good training.
Illegitimus Non Carborundum.
In God we trust.
November 15th, 2006 04:19 PM
Oregon = No crime would have been committed
The way it should be.
November 15th, 2006 05:27 PM
How did he get busted? I want to know how he was made.
The Problem: When stupid people do stupid things, smart people end up getting killed.
November 15th, 2006 06:37 PM
+1 on Oregon.Pretty good gun laws for a state run by Dems.Full auto and silencers legal too.
Originally Posted by Wayne
November 15th, 2006 07:22 PM
He still got off easier than either you or me would have.
Quemadmodum gladius neminem occidit, occidentis telum est.-Seneca
"If you carry a gun, people will call you paranoid. If I have a gun, what do I have to be paranoid about?" -Clint Smith
"An unarmed man can only flee from evil, and evil is not overcome by fleeing from it." -Jeff Cooper
November 15th, 2006 07:36 PM
You are right. They would have thrown the book at us. But then again we would not be this stupid!!!!!
Originally Posted by goawayfarm
"May God have mercy on my enemies, because I won't."
General George Patton
November 15th, 2006 07:38 PM
I pity the poor guy that turned the Mayor in.
He may as well move.
Gun control is hitting what you aim at
November 15th, 2006 09:06 PM
Originally Posted by Bando
Ditto. My question exactly.
November 15th, 2006 11:43 PM
Melton is a former executive from a local tv station. For years he has been a motivating force in helping young kids turn their life around. Previous dem gov. appointed him head of state narcotics bureau (no le experience whatsoever). Gets elected mayor of Jackson (70% African-American).
This guy is loaded with good intention. He absolutely wants to make Jackson a better place to live and to do business. He is a powerful voice in "doing the right thing." I've heard him speak. Very moving.
However, he has taken to the streets with two JPD detectives assigned as his body guards. He has alledgely taken teenagers on raids. He has commendeered the city's SWAT vehicle. He has been accused of violating the civil rights of others and destroying personal property without due process.
Mississippi's CCW law prohibits carry on any school campus, public facility like a government building, police station, etc. This state has a pretty lax CCW law (Will Issue state). But the law is the law.
Who made him? I believe he made himself. He's been pretty vocal about his intentions. He has stepped on a lot of toes. He alledgedly has violated the rights of many folks in Jackson.
Unfortunately, the road to hell is paved with good intention.
IMO, the deal today was a plea bargain (good for him, good for Jackson), but he probably has set a potload of civil action suits.
In my heart, I believe he was trying to do the right thing, just went about it the wrong way.
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