Man pleads not guilty to pulling gun in ND courtHETTINGER, N.D. (AP) — A North Dakota man accused of pulling a pistol in a courtroom after being convicted of molesting a girl has pleaded not guilty to 14 counts of attempted murder.
HETTINGER, N.D. (AP) — A North Dakota man accused of pulling a pistol in a courtroom after being convicted of molesting a girl has pleaded not guilty to 14 counts of attempted murder.
Vicente Chacano is accused of trying to shoot jurors, Adams County Sheriff Gene Molbert and prosecutor Jonathan Byers in February. The 9 mm semi-automatic handgun did not fire, and Byers and Molbert were able to subdue Chacano.
Defense attorney Robert Quick on Thursday asked Judge Steven McCullough to dismiss six of the counts against Chacano, saying some of the jurors had already left the courtroom before the incident allegedly occurred, the Dickinson Press reported (http://bit.ly/p4qTNj ). Byers disputed that.
"A number of them had had a chance to get out of the jury box," he said. "I think it's unlikely that they actually got out the door because it was a very short time after (the judge) had excused them."
McCullough ruled there was enough evidence to move forward with all of the counts.
Chacano, a Chilean native who was working in southwest North Dakota as a farm and ranch hand, in July was sentenced to 40 years in prison for the sex crime. He is appealing that conviction.