I came across this story today on Americas Watchtower and am almost speechless…
Last week New Hampshire resident Ward Bird reported to the New Hampshire State Prison after the state Supreme Court upheld his conviction for criminal threatening. Because of the state mandatory sentencing guidelines, Ward Bird was sentenced to serve at least three years in state prison.
In 2006 a woman showed up on his property–which was clearly marked with “no trespassing” signs–looking for directions to property that she was thinking about buying. She claimed that Ward Bird came out of the house waving his .45-caliber handgun at her and shouted profanities at her. But that is not what happened according to his wife, who said this:
He had a gun but he didn’t point it at her, even though that’s what she said at the trial,” said Ward Bird’s wife, Ginny Bird. “He had been trying to get her to leave for a long time and held up the gun to check the safety as he was coming into the house to call police and tell them there was a trespasser on our property
Even if everything happened exactly how the “victim” said it happened I don’t see how it could be construed as a crime. She was committing a crime by trespassing and he has every right to remove her from his property. I am just lost as to how this makes any sense…
Laying aside the fact that her allegations don’t even constitute a crime in my mind, how does a jury convict someone when there is only one witness not involved in the incident, and that witness does not corroborate the “victim’s” story? I know it was his wife and therefore her testimony could be construed as biased; but, in that case, how there enough evidence to convict this man of any thing? Steve, at America’s Watchtower, makes the point that Mr. Bird was not some unsavory type and the “victim” an angelic epitome of virtue:
Ward Bird is not one of those loners who hates people and doesn’t want them anywhere near him, he is a staple of the community. He is a father of four, has never been in any trouble, and in fact is a local Boy Scout leader. In fact, the woman who lodged the complaint spent time in jail for animal cruelty–this little fact was not allowed in court–and in fact was on Bird’s property illegally.
Wait a cotton-pickin’ minute?!?!? An upstanding citizen is being convicted based on the word of a criminal, and that fact is not allowed to be presented in court? (facepalm)
Now read this gem from America’s Watchtower:
Ward Bird had the opportunity to plea his way out of jail time, but the plea bargain would have cost him his right to own and carry firearms. He decided to take a stand, fully believing that he did nothing wrong and had the right to defend his family and his property. He stood up for all gun owners across the state when he easily could have backed down and for that he has lost his freedom. The New Hampshire constitution is pretty clear when it comes to gun rights, even more clear than the United States constitution: “All persons have the right to keep and bear arms in defense of themselves, their families, their property and the state.”
Ward Bird thought he had the constitutional protection to defend his property, but alas he was proven wrong by a jury of his peers and must pay the price.
Apparently this “jury of his peers” can’t read, judging by the wording of the New Hampshire constitution… (double facepalm)…
Here is a final word from America’s Watchtower on a possible resolution to this travesty:
As support for Ward Bird continues to grow all across the state of New Hampshire all eyes will be focused on Governor John Lynch. He has the power to correct this affront to our liberties by pardoning a man that was simply defending his property. Earlier this year the governor signed into law a bill that allowed violent criminals and child molesters to be released early in order to save the state a few dollars. If he can do something as vile as that in good conscience, surely he can free Ward Bird.
He’d better, this is unconscionable…