And so we launch a new series, highlighting careless gun owners who bring disgrace to those who understand that responsibilities and rights must be joined at the proverbial hip. That total commitment to gun safety is a prerequisite for anyone seeking to keep or carry a weapon. Today, The Gazette helps us see some major league stupidity in action, and learn that the wheels of justice grind slow, but they grind exceedingly fine. “Former New Jersey Nets all-star basketball player Jayson Williams is expected to accept an 18-month prison sentence in a Somerset County Courthouse this morning — eight years and nine days after the shooting death of a limousine drive at Williams’ former mansion. . . .”
Williams was handling a Browning 12-gauge shotgun around 2 a.m. on Feb. 14, 2002, when it discharged into Costas “Gus” Christofi’s chest, killing the 55-year-old driver.
At a hearing last month, Williams, who turned 42 on Monday, admitted that he had not checked whether the safety mechanism was engaged before picking up the gun as he spoke with ex-Nets teammate Benoit Benjamin near the door of the 27,000-square-foot home’s master bedroom.
Asked by his attorney, Joseph Hayden, if he had checked to see if the gun was loaded, Williams replied, “I only saw the top barrel — I didn’t check the bottom barrel.” Williams added that he “didn’t look where the muzzle of the gun was pointing” before snapping the gun closed with one hand.