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DAD GETS 5 YEARS FOR BB SHOOTINGPhillipsburg Army Sargeant shot girl on mischief night.
The Express-Times | September 21, 2002 | Katherine Blok

Posted on 09/22/2002 6:05:24 PM PDT by jack22


BEVIDERE- An Army sergeant was sentenced to five years in prison Friday for shooting a 15-year-old Phillipsburg girl with a BB gun in 1999..

Sgt. Jeffery Mott, 30, of Phillipsburg, will be eligible for parole after serving three years in state prison, said sate superior court Judge John J. Pursel.

Defense attorney Paul M. Aaroe II said he intends to file an appeal. The jury wrongly convicted Mott, Aaroe said.

Mott was found guilty in April of possession of a weapon for an unlawful purpose and aggravated assault. He was aquitted of a lesser aggravated assault charge.

The shooting occured on Oct. 30, 1999, as the victim and her friend fled the scene of a Mischief night prank in Phillipsburg. The incident began after someone threw corn cobs at Mott's front door and broke the screen, authorities said.

Assistant Prosecutor Siegel said Mott continued to shoot at the victim and her friend as the two girls were hiding around the side of the house. Seigel said Mott was arrogant throughout the progression of the case and lied to police during the trial.

"He tangled himself in a web of lies and destroyed himself," SEigel said. "Even up to sentencing, he was arrogant and placed the blame on everyone else but himself."

Aaroe, Mott and Mott's wife, Kimberly, maintain the incident never occured. Defense witnesses said during the trial that the red mark on the defendant's leg likely had been there before that night.

During pre-sentencing arguments, Aaroe said "it rises to the level of absurd" to sentence Mott to three years in prison without parole.

"I don't think anyone would, in this day and age, say it's okay to shoot someone with a BB gun. But shooting someone with a BB gun isn't the same as shooting someone with an assault rifle",Aaroe said. "It's not burning someone's house. It's not killing someone while drunk...The injury was minor."

Siegel called BB guns "powerful" and "destructive." Pursel said state law has found BB guns to be "deadly weapons."

Aaroe argued that Mott's character, military service and clean record show that "he should not get the punishment the prosecutor is demanding." Mott is an oustanding member of the community and has a family to provide for, including his wife and two small children, Aaroe said. A prison sentence would "clearly place an excessive hardship on the Mott family." said Aaroe.

In the courtroom, Mott asked Pursel to consider his wife and children, for whom he is the only financial providor. "You have to go to bed at night knowing those two kids have no father to provide for them," Mott said.

Kimberly Mott said she has benn on welfare "all summer" and though she will attempt to get a job, doubts she will be able to find employment that will pay enough to provide for her family. "He was in the Army for 13 years. I didn't have to work. He was seven years away from retirement," she said.

(Mr.) Mott also said the prosecutor's office "twisted" his statements to suit their arguments. "The prosecutor would have you believe I'm a bad guy. I wake up every morning (in jail-no bail from conviction in April to sentencing) and I can't believe it...No one else can believe it," Mott said.

Aaroe, Kimberly Mott and Mott's mother Linna Barker, said the two girls who threw the corn cob at the Mott home lied during their trial testimony and are the one's who should be punished. "They were out mischiefing, violating the law, running from the police," Aaroe said.

The girls are out for money and tried to sue the Mott family, Kimberly said. "That shows you what they're after," she said. "He should not be there. They put away an innocent man."

Barker, of Lower Mount Bethel Township, called the sentence "unfair justice". She said her son is a "good boy. It's just not fair. I believed in the system and the system failed."

TOPICS: News/Current Events
KEYWORDS: bbgun; veteran
**Please read past threads concerning the case for more information. Also listed today is a follow up editorial put out by the paper calling the sentence "unfair". Please read "Scales of Justice"**
1 posted on 09/22/2002 6:05:24 PM PDT by jack22
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To: jack22
Very unfair sentence, what planet are these folks from.
I sure hope this is overturned.
2 posted on 09/22/2002 6:37:29 PM PDT by Naplm
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To: jack22
A five year sentence is rediculous. The police and military have used several variations of bb and pellet guns for realistic training in which they actually shoot each other. It's evolved into painball and simunition which are quite painful when hit. I remember having BB gun wars as a kid. Thank God I grew up in a more conservative era.
3 posted on 09/22/2002 6:37:34 PM PDT by Ajnin
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To: Ajnin
I wonder what the girl got for vandalizing his home?
4 posted on 09/22/2002 6:40:06 PM PDT by Texasforever
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To: Texasforever
The girls received nothing!! They were the victims and that's all the courts cared about!
5 posted on 09/22/2002 6:44:38 PM PDT by jack22
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To: jack22
Not too long ago, kids stealing watermelons were fair game for American farmers carrying shotguns. A little buckshot went a long way in teaching kids right from wrong.
6 posted on 09/22/2002 6:51:11 PM PDT by thinktwice
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To: thinktwice
These are some of the fruits of the anti-gun laws and propaganda. To call a BB gun "powerful and destructive" is insane. It didn't even penetrate the skin. In New Jersey, BB guns are classified as "Assault Weapons" because they hold more than 10 shots. This is simply nuts. At the mininmum, the girls should have been prosecuted for trespass.
7 posted on 09/22/2002 6:57:31 PM PDT by marktwain
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To: Ajnin
Ping for BB gun wars. We wore safety goggles and fought with "Red Riders" exclusively at a reasonable distance. They do stiing, but never broke the skin. This is absurd. Meanwhile in PDX the police won't even show up to take fingerprints on car theft. You file a report by mail.
8 posted on 09/22/2002 7:01:05 PM PDT by Jack Black
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To: Jack Black
This is ridiculous. I accidently shot my best friend when I was a kid, with my BB gun. It didn't even break the skin.

9 posted on 09/22/2002 7:41:30 PM PDT by Trickyguy
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To: Jack Black
We used to use Crossmans with the promise of only using one pump. Inevitably somebody would get a BB stuck in their ass thereby dissolving the one pump rule. 10 pump BB gun wars really got the adrenaline flowing. Yeah, those were the good ol' days.
10 posted on 09/22/2002 8:58:09 PM PDT by Ajnin
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To: marktwain
Actually, in the good ole state of New Jersey, a BB gun is classified as a deadly weapon and that is why it is subject to this Grave's Act, of a minimum of three years. In NJ any item that can "fire" a projectile is considered a deadly weapon including your good old fashioned sling-shot!! What is our world coming too?
11 posted on 09/23/2002 3:36:41 AM PDT by jack22
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To: jack22
Do you (or any FReepers) have ideas on what we can do to help in this situation? Is there a fund set up for contributing to legal costs and to assist the family?
12 posted on 09/23/2002 4:00:32 AM PDT by toddst
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To: thinktwice
buckshot for watermelons?????????? down here they used rock salt....would sting like crazy but not deadly....
13 posted on 09/23/2002 4:06:01 AM PDT by cajun-jack
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To: cajun-jack
buckshot for watermelons??????????

Birdshot ... tiny pellets ... long range ...

A kid on the emergency room table next to mine was having some shot removed from his torso one day -- Stealing watermelons in Virginia.

Nobody had any sympathy for him, and nobody even considered prosecuting righteously indignant farmers in those days.

14 posted on 09/23/2002 7:09:26 AM PDT by thinktwice
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To: toddst
There was one account set up when he was first convicted in April (he has been imprisoned since, with no bail pending sentencing). So his family has been on their own since April 23! FReepers can sent donations to
United Trust Bank, Hillcrest Shopping Center, Memorial Parkway, Phillipsburg, NJ 08865. You must mention account # 14026872, and the Mott name.
Thanks! Also, any letters or commentery to The Governor James McGreevey on The Mott Family's behalf couldn't hurt either. The more publicity the better. This is so absurd, and something must be done.
15 posted on 09/23/2002 2:27:04 PM PDT by jack22
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To: Naplm
Planet New Jersey. Big supporter state of corruptionism, moral relativism, and Clintonism.
16 posted on 09/23/2002 2:29:58 PM PDT by Diddle E. Squat
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To: jack22
Email I sent to the governer

Dear Governor McGreevey,
When I was a kid, my friends and I used to have wars and shoot each other with BB guns.They raised welts and sometimes,but rarely drew blood.We were careful not to shoot each other where it would show, because our parents would kick our butts for doing it.
While I think it was stupid of Mr. Mott to do it, He sure didn't deserve a prison sentance for it.He wasn't attempting to, nor did he, place the kids lives in danger.I'm sure Mr. Mott has learned a lesson that will stick with him the rest of his life.
Please find it in your heart to commute his sentance to time served.

17 posted on 09/23/2002 2:48:09 PM PDT by philetus
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To: philetus
If he got a million emails like this it might get him to do something.
18 posted on 09/23/2002 2:49:41 PM PDT by philetus
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To: Naplm
In Texas, deadly force can be used in cases
involving criminal mischief after dark
19 posted on 09/23/2002 2:54:11 PM PDT by JSpears
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