Friday, June 27, 2014

Clark Aposhian has Charges Dropped and Gets Guns Back

Salt Lake City Tribune

We've talked about him before here and here.

Utah’s leading gun advocate, Clark Aposhian, resolved his criminal case Monday after battling misdemeanor charges for over a year.
With Monday’s resolution — where he pleaded no contest to a disorderly conduct infraction — Aposhian will now have access to his gun arsenal, which reportedly contains more than 300 firearms that were confiscated during the duration of the justice court proceedings.
Aposhian, 49, was originally charged in Holladay Justice Court with misdemeanor criminal trespass, criminal mischief, threat of violence and domestic violence in the presence of a child — stemming from a Memorial Day incident in which he was accused of driving a 2.5-ton military vehicle onto his ex-wife’s driveway and threatening to run over her new husband and his car.
As part of Monday’s resolution, he was immediately sentenced to pay a $320 fine, according to court records.
Aposhian’s attorney, Morgan Philpot, said Monday that his client feels "fully vindicated" and "grateful" that the domestic violence charges have been dismissed.


  1. As often happens in contentious divorces, especially those involving children the parties will do what they can for any perceived advantage. While protective orders have a genuine use when people need an official order to stop threatening or violent actions, they are often used by one or both parties to secure such an advantage.
    The protective order that the ex requested was dismissed because it didn't even meet the reduced requirements of proof needed for a civil action much less that of a criminal charge.

    "No physical violence • The judge dismissed this fear of physical abuse, noting her interactions with Aposhian had never escalated to physical violence in the past, and there was little evidence to show they were likely to in the future — two legal requirements of granting a protective order under Utah law."

    "Stone pointed out that Meyer never mentioned any ongoing emotional or verbal abuse in her divorce filings. "

    "The judge also wrote that despite having a mutual restraining order that instructed both Aposhian and Meyer to communicate strictly through email, Meyer elected to waive those protections "for some time," interacted with Aposhian in person and maintained a joint-custody arrangement with their daughter."

    1. Despite your theories about contentious divorces, Clark doesn't sound like a stable and responsible gun owner to me. He sounds like a hot-headed fanatical bully.

      A different judge in a different jurisdiction might very well have determined that someone who threatens others is unfit to own guns. That's why we need a may-issue policy for gun ownership and why we need to raise the bar.

    2. Mike, the judge didn't say it's ok for people to do these things and keep their guns. The judge said there was no evidence he did these things. You'd prefer that people accused of crimes to be punished? I guess if you want to ban guns for as many people as you do, you're going to have to include people who "sound like they are bullies to you".

    3. That's not the way I read it. To me it seems the lenient judge, perhaps a gun enthusiast himself and sympathetic to the offender, changed the threatening behavior to a "disorderly conduct infraction."

      My one-strike-you're-out policy would take care of guys like this. Responsible gun owners don't do disorderly conduct, period. If they do they lose the guns.

    4. "To me it seems the lenient judge, perhaps a gun enthusiast himself and sympathetic to the offender, changed the threatening behavior to a "disorderly conduct infraction."

      The judge has to go with the evidence that is presented. If the evidence doesn't meet the level needed, then the defendant is acquitted. That's the way it works everywhere.
      I'm not sure how this particular judge is selected, be it by election or appointment, but if elected, and the voters don't like his decisions, then he can be voted out of office.

    5. C'mon, the disparity in issuing indictments and charging people varies dramatically from one place to another.

      I agree that judges have to work within the law. That's part of the problem, that my one-strike-you're-out policy is not law. In other words we simply don't have proper gun control laws, not in CA, not in NJ, and certainly not in Aposhian's cowboy state of Utah.

    6. A judge makes a judgment call and usually has discretion in sentencing. Being humans (judges) that's why you get such different sentences for the same crime.

  2. "C'mon, the disparity in issuing indictments and charging people varies dramatically from one place to another. "

    You are correct, it does vary widely according to local expectations and how the laws are written. You also have stated before that you want judges to lean towards supporting your contention that possession of firearms isn't an individual right.
    As for your one strike and you're out wish list, that sounds a lot like the minimum sentencing laws for drugs that you often complain about. If you wish to implement the one strike and your out law, you have but to make the offences you list felonies. At which time, a person loses their right to possess firearms and ammunition.

    1. They wouldn't necessarily have to be felonies, but I wouldn't mind. The only important thing is that people who demonstrate the inability to safely exercise their right to own guns lose that right. Call it a felony or a misdemeanor, as you like.