I-Team 10 Follow Up: Animal officer and lawyer charged
Created: 09/10/2013 5:48 PM WHEC.com
By: Brett Davidsen
A strange twist in the story of an animal cruelty officer accused of illegally possessing a gun. I-Team 10 has learned his attorney is now charged in connection with the case. This has to do with the gun that Dylan Chase was asked to voluntarily surrender after his initial arrest.
I-Team was there when Chase appeared in court at his arraignment in August with his attorney, Michael Jones at his side. Chase, a convicted felon, was arrested after people saw him with a loaded .45 caliber handgun while at the Avon Corn Festival.
On Monday night, Chase was slapped with a new felony charge of tampering with physical evidence and this time, Jones was charged as well. According to the criminal complaint, the gun that was turned into police “had been altered, with removed internal parts that made the pistol non-functioning.” Why is that relevant? Because if the gun won't fire, the district attorney's office would have no viable weapons charge.
Greg McCaffrey, Livingston County District Attorney, said, “We had information in our initial case that the gun would have been operable and that it was loaded at the Avon Corn Festival. So obviously it was a little troubling that the gun appeared to be in a substantially different condition when it was turned in by Mr. Jones and his client on August 27."
Chase started as an animal cruelty officer earlier this year after filing papers with the state, incorporating as a not-for-profit SPCA to operate in Livingston County. He then registered with the state as a peace officer, which under normal circumstances would allow him to carry a firearm without a pistol permit, but because of a felony forgery conviction, he isn't allowed to have a gun.