Felon in trouble after being caught with gun during hunting trip

Cary Ashby • Updated Apr 1, 2016 at 1:25 AM

A felon convicted of having a firearm during a hunting trip forfeited the gun.

Christopher M. Eads, 43, of Mansfield, also was fined $750 Tuesday during his sentencing hearing Wednesday in Huron County Common Pleas Court. He faces a 60-day discretionary jail sentence during his three years of probation. Eads also isn’t allowed to possess or use a firearm.

Eads, who led a law-abiding life since 2009, was non-reporting probation at the time of the Dec. 7 incident. 

“He was hunting with another person,” Huron County Prosecutor Daivia Kasper said.

A wildlife officer with the Ohio Department of Natural Resources saw a truck with out-of-state license plates. Kasper said the officer requested Eads to present his driver’s license. The prosecutor noted the defendant had a license from Washington state, but had an Ohio resident’s hunting permit.

“He did cooperate at the time. He turned over the gun,” Kasper added.

Defense attorney Ed Rhode III said his client cooperated with the ODNR and Huron County Sheriff’s Office during the investigation and noted Eads didn’t “raise an arm” or his voice.

On Feb. 10, Eads pleaded guilty to attempted possession of weapons under disability.

Eads told Judge Jim Conway he should have had an attorney look into the situation.

“I thought I was following the law and I had zero intent on breaking it,” Eads said.

Defendants with felony convictions are prohibited from possessing or using firearms. In May 1, 1995, a local jury found Eads guilty of felonious assault. He immediately was sentenced to four to 15 years in prison. 

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