Friday, February 3, 2012
Gun rights advocate, currently serving time in jail for homicide, loses civil rights complaint over open carry arrests
24-year-old Jesus Gonzalez, of Milwaukee, Wisconsin is currently serving a 20 year sentence for a 2010 shooting that left one man dead and another paralyzed.
In October, a jury found Gonzales guilty of first degree reckless homicide and first degree reckless injury in the death of 29-year-old Danny John and the shooting of 22-year-old Jered Corn. The two men were shot as they left a Milwaukee bar and were heading to a friend's house down the street. Gonzales encountered the two men when he went to move his car. During to a 911 call made by Gonzalez he said, "I just had two individuals try to assault me when I was going outside to move my car." He told the dispatcher that he shot out the window of a car, and one of the men fell down, but he wasn't sure whether he hit either or both of the men, and that he ran after firing the shots. When the dispatcher asked if the men had a gun Gonzalez replied, "I don't know what they had, but they must have thought that I was not armed."
Gonzalez argued at trial that he acted in self-defense but presented no real case. After calling 911 on the night of the shootings Gonzalez waited for police and surrendered. He made no other statement to investigators and did not testify at trial.
Prior to the shootings Gonzalez had no criminal record and was well known in the open carry movement. He had been arrested twice for disorderly conduct for openly wearing a holstered gun into stores in 2008 and 2009. No charges were ever filed in either of the arrests and Gonzalez subsequently filed a civil-rights complaint over the arrests. The case was dismissed in May of 2010, two days after the shootings, and Gonzalez appealed the decision in September of 2010. Thursday, a federal appeals court denied the appeal and threw out the complaint.