bigstoryap.org reports that one Raymond Fryberg [above] was found guilty of illegal possession of firearms by a jury in a federal trial. [Click here for the ruling.] The restraining order used to convict Fryberg was granted in 2002, sparked when Fryberg’s son Jaylen, murdered four classmates then committed suicide. The order was requested by Fryberg’s former girlfriend, Jamie Gobin. The two have a child in common. Originally . . .
the restraining order was temporary. There was a hearing to determine if the restraining order should be permanent. Records show that Fryberg was served notice of the hearing, but never showed up. A permanent restraining order was granted. Thus, even though Fryberg was never convicted of a crime of domestic violence, the restraining order permanently prohibited him from owning firearms.
To complicate the matter, the restraining order did not show up in Federal background checks; the tribal court had no requirement to submit it and had not done so.
Browne said the problem started with the protection order, which was sought by Fryberg’s former girlfriend, Jamie Gobin.
A judge granted Gobin the permanent order because Fryberg never appeared at a hearing to contest it. However, the defense contended Fryberg was never notified about the hearing.
The officer who claimed to notify Fryberg was married to Gobin’s sister and reported serving the notice at a nonexistent address, Browne said.
Fryberg’s attorney claims that Fryberg did not know did not know he was prohibited from owning guns. From kirotv.com:
Browne says the protection order never made it clear that Fryberg couldn’t own a gun. He even showed KIRO 7 a concealed weapons permit from the state dated Jan. 14, 2013, which was issued after the protection order.
An important point: court records showed that Fryberg plead no contest in 2012 to violating the restraining order. According to seattletimes.com, in 2012, Fryberg was found in violation of the order, fined $200 and placed on probation.
We can’t know what might have happened if Fryberg had shown up for the hearing in 2002. It is plausible that the restraining order would not have been made permanent, and that it would have expired after a year.
But that was not the case. Ten years later, he plead guilty to violating the restraining order. We don’t know what happened to cause the plea deal, but most plea deals are the result of dropping more serious charges. I don’t know the workings of the tribal court, so whether that happened or not is pure speculation.
Fryberg was never denied from purchasing a firearm or obtaining a concealed carry permit. The prosecution made the point that even though the restraining order was not in the system, Fryberg signed a statement saying that he would abide by the terms of the Order for Protection. Maybe he never read them.
This is a cautionary tale. When a person buys a firearm from a federal dealer, they have to sign a form 4473. Question h. on the form asks “Are you subject to a court order restraining you from harassing, stalking, or threatening your child or an intimate partner or child of such partner?”
It’s one of 12 questions about the eligibility of a person to purchase a firearm on the 4473 form. Prosecutors emphasized that Raymond Fryberg checked “No” and signed the form. Fryberg can now be sentenced to up to 10 years in jail and fined up to $250,000.
©2015 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included. Link to Gun Watch