One of Utah's top gun lobbyists was arrested this week after he allegedly used a 2.5-ton Army surplus vehicle to threaten the lives of his ex-wife's family, but his lawyer insisted that he was simply "having fun in his big boy toy."
According to a KTSU report, Utah Shooting Sports Council Chairman Clark Aposhian was arrested by Salt Lake police on Monday for domestic violence. If Aposhian is convicted, he would have to give up his arsenal of weapons and possibly his job as chairman.
Police Sgt. Mark Askerlund told KTSU that a woman reported that Aposhian had driven his 2.5-ton army surplus truck onto her property.
"[He] honked the air horn, pulled into the residence, running over the lawn and almost striking her vehicle," Askerlund said, adding that Aposhian returned to the victim's home while police were investigating.
"And while we’re there investigating the trespassing and the threats, he comes back, and to make a long story short: Mr. Aposhian was arrested for domestic violence and trespassing," he explained.
"He did indicate to the officers that he was carrying a weapon," Askerlund recalled. "The officers took his weapon away. He was charged with a crime. They booked the weapon into evidence and transported Mr. Aposhian to jail."
KTSU reported that the arrest report indicated that Aposhian "allegedly told the victim that he will go wherever he wants and he would run over the victim’s cars and bury the victim."
Video of Aposhian's M35 Army surplus truck -- often referred to as a "deuce and a half" -- showed that he spray-painted the words "CTWD HGTS NEIGHBORHOOD WATCH" and "ZOMBIE RESPONSE VEHICLE" on the side. Salon noted earlier this year that gun owners seemed to have an obsession with zombies. The National Rifle Association's (NRA) conference earlier this month feature zombie targets resembling President Barack Obama and an "ex-girlfriend" that actually bleed when shot. And the NRA has even picked "Zombieland" as one of "Coolest Gun Movies."
Aposhian's attorney, Mitch Vilos, told The Salt Lake Tribune on Wednesday that his client was "having fun in his big boy toy."
Vilos explained that the dispute is related to a custody dispute between Aposhian and his ex-wife, who lives in the same neighborhood. Vilos said that it was "starting to get under his skin that he was being denied custody" of his 11-year-old daughter and that's why his client was on edge when police arrested him.
"I’m trying to figure out why this family would go so ballistic for [him] backing into a driveway," the attorney remarked. "It’s a non-event."
"I would blame the Cottonwood Heights police for doing an incompetent investigation," he added.
Aposhian found himself in hot water earlier this year when his assault rifle was stolen from where he left it on the top of his vehicle.
(h/t: Talking Points Memo)