Jury convicts Carroll gun dealer

prison time possible

April 29, 2004|BY A SUN STAFF WRITER

Mount Airy gun dealer Amir H. Tabassi was found guilty by a jury last night of keeping loaded weapons in his home within arm's reach of a sleeping 12-year-old girl.

Jurors deliberated three hours after a three-day trial in Carroll County Circuit Court before returning the verdict against Tabassi, 55 -- convicting him on most of the charges lodged by state police after officers with a search warrant seized 111 weapons and firearm accessories at his home Aug. 5.

State police testified during the trial that they found unsecured weapons on a bed and in closets, dresser drawers and a duffel bag.

Tabassi had been charged with 11 counts of allowing a child access to loaded firearms, one count of reckless endangerment and one count of carrying a weapon in a vehicle -- all misdemeanors.

The jury began deliberating just before 5 p.m. and returned guilty verdicts on every charge except transporting a weapon in a vehicle.

He could receive up to five years in jail for the reckless endangerment charges. The child-access charges carry a $1,000 fine each.

Tabassi, testifying in his defense, said that he carried loaded firearms with what he believed was a valid permit. State police said the permit had expired.

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