Church St. gun threat leads to charges - WCAX.COM Local Vermont News, Weather and Sports-

Church St. gun threat leads to charges

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Police say around 1:30 a.m. Friday, 33 year-old Cecil Campbell was waving around a gun and making threatening statements to a car full of people who were leaving lower Church Street.

"From what we understand he was arguing with a group and the witness heard him make some threats around -- quote -- blowing you away. And he could see the handgun exposed in his hand," said Burlington Police Deputy Chief Bruce Bovat.

No one was injured and the weapon was never discharged. Police caught up with Campbell a short distance away in a car with two other people. Police found a loaded 9-mm. handgun in the vehicle.  

Campbell has a criminal record including 32 violations of probation and parole and 16 misdemeanor convictions. He also has a felony conviction, so he cannot legally own a gun. Campbell was charged with simple assault, reckless endangerment, and disorderly conduct.

The incident comes just days after Burlington's City Council approved three gun safety ordinances -- including requiring gun locks, removing guns from domestic violence suspects and banning guns in bars. "Burlington is trying to pass some ordinances related to gun -- and specifically guns in a bar or liquor establishment -- and we have reason to believe he was leaving one of the downtown bars, so this is what we're trying to avoid, or deter, from happening," Deputy Chief Bovat said.

The car full of people Campbell was threatening were not found, nor did they report anything to law enforcement. Burlington Police are looking for any information on the incident.  As for the gun ordinances -- the City Council approved them, but before they can become law voters will need to give their approval on Town Meeting Day. The legislature will also have to approve the charter change.

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