St. Paul officer sentenced for firing gun in city limits

  • January 29, 2013 - 8:07 PM

A St. Paul police officer was sentenced Tuesday to a year on probation for firing a pistol into his barbecue pit within city limits.

Jon R. Fish, 32, must also perform 16 hours of community service, pay a $100 fine and complete treatment, ordered Judge George Stephenson in Ramsey County District Court.

After he was cited for the misdemeanor, Fish had been placed on leave with the department, but no information was immediately available late Tuesday afternoon about his return to his job, which has a salary of about $73,000.

Fish couldn't be reached for comment.

The case began with witnesses reported hearing shots about 2:30 a.m. outside Fish's home near Interstate 35E and Randolph Avenue.

Officers arrived and found a shell casing in the back of his house, near a sidewalk.

Fish drove up just then and allowed police to search his yard. He told officers that he'd fired 10 rounds but they were blanks.

The officers gathered seven spent shells from a grassy area around the fire pit in Fish's back yard. Then, Fish admitted that he did fire live rounds and that he'd been drinking, a complaint says.

An officer contacted a friend who had been with Fish at a bar before they went to Fish's house. The friend corroborated his story.

No information was available as to whether the .40-caliber gun was Fish's service weapon.

The case was prosecuted by the Minneapolis city attorney's office to avoid any potential conflict of interest.

For the misdemeanor charge of discharging a firearm in the city, the penalty is up to 90 days in jail and a possible fine up to $1,000.


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