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Gunshot on New Year's Eve Leads to Charges for Kent Man

All information is according to Kent Police and Portage County court records.

A Kent man has pleaded not guilty to discharging a firearm within city limits on New Year's Eve.

Mitchell S. Waller, 49, of 438 E. School St., pleaded not guilty Jan. 3 to one count of having a weapon while intoxicated, one count of discharging a firearm and two counts of aggravated menacing, all of which are first-degree misdemeanors.

Kent Police Lt. James Prusha said, according to witnesses, a man and woman were walking home near the corner of East School Street and South Lincoln Street when the man stopped to urinate in the street.

Prusha said witnesses reported Waller started yelling at them and waving the gun in the air before firing a shot.

"The shot up was up into the air, and after doing that he pointed the gun toward them," Prusha said.

Police responded to the call of shots fired at about 4 a.m. Jan. 1.

Prusha said officers did not recover a gun but did find a shotgun shell. Officers conducted a gunshot residue test on Waller to determine if he had fired a gun recently, but those test results won't be back for several weeks.

Waller is scheduled for a pretrial hearing on the charges on Feb. 14 in Portage County Municipal Court Judge Barbara Oswick's courtroom.

Tony January 11, 2013 at 10:24 AM
You left the "a" out of weapon in the 2nd paragraph. Not a big deal, simple mistake. It happens to all of us. I figured I'd let you know before all these other miserable people get on here and bash you like crazy for a little error. I'm sure they all spell everything correctly all the time.
Kris Emly January 11, 2013 at 11:56 AM
I feel safer just knowing that another intoxicated individual is using his 2nd amendment rights. I nominate him for NRA man of the moment.
Teresa K. January 11, 2013 at 02:23 PM
Did the street urinator get charged?
Resident of Kent January 11, 2013 at 02:39 PM
They brought charges against someone because of drunken eyewitness accounts & a shotgun shell was found ?
Matt Fredmonsky January 11, 2013 at 02:42 PM
Not that I'm aware of.
Max Gilliland January 11, 2013 at 08:35 PM
As a life member and responsible gun owner your statement shows the first amendment can be abused also. The law takes care of irresponsible gun owners to bad it not the same with 1st amendment lies!
Matthias P. January 11, 2013 at 09:36 PM
Believe it or not, Shell casings are actually quite rare to find on the ground in a neighborhood. Intoxicated eyewitness account alone would not have been enough, I agree.
David de la Fuente January 12, 2013 at 01:51 AM
There is zero abuse of the First Amendment in Kris' statement, and First Amendment lies (called libel) against individuals are punishable when they do documented harm. I'm sorry that doesn't apply to the class of responsible gun owners when people correctly point out the harm that gun-owning yahoos do, but those are the breaks. I eagerly await Fox News-inspired rants about how maybe we should start banning cars and hammers if we're going to start going after guns.
Teresa K. January 12, 2013 at 04:14 AM
I think the street Urinator should be charged: indecent exposure, littering and inducing a panic. The guy with the gun got all frazzled when he saw the Urinator and shot the gun to stop him from peeing. I also think the Urinator should pay all legal fees and fines for the shooter. Oh, and the Urinator should apologize to Mr. Waller for the trouble he has caused him.
David de la Fuente January 12, 2013 at 08:43 AM
Is this a joke? Yeah, damn the man who made the suspect allegedly fire his gun. It's like you think people who own guns have zero self control, so anyone who yanks their chains deserves whatever they get and is responsible for what happens next. I've read a lot of crazy stuff on comment boards, but this is right there at the top.
Teresa K. January 12, 2013 at 02:53 PM
David: I am not joking. I think the Urinator should be charged. The Shooter didnt fire off a shot til he noticed the Urinator. Speaking of self control: how do you think the Urinator was doing in that department that night?
David de la Fuente January 12, 2013 at 03:25 PM
I don't really have a problem with charging the Urinator (why are we capitalizing this?), but the difference between peeing in the street and firing off a weapon in response is not close to the same thing, and the first guy in no way can be considered responsible for the shooter's lack of self-control. The difference between their offenses is great because of the damage each can do, the same way that a jaywalker is penalized much less than someone who runs a red light in a one-ton car. But thanks for reiterating your point that gun owners shouldn't be responsible for their own lack of self-discipline.
The Omnipotent Sponge - Soak it up! January 12, 2013 at 03:35 PM
Precisely why people shouldn't be running about with weapons. "He got all frazzled" and "shot the gun to stop him from peeing" are fantastic reasons to keep morons with guns off the streets. I'm assuming you'll say the guy with the gun was a "law abiding citizen". Law abiding citizen he was not. Just a nut with a gun. Wait, a drunk nut with a gun. Yay!

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