SMETHPORT — An Erie man pleaded guilty Thursday in McKean County Court to allegations that he possessed a firearm at a time when he was prohibited from doing so.
James G. Williams III, 28, entered the plea to a charge of possession of firearm prohibited.
According to District Attorney Stephanie Vettenburg-Shaffer, Williams was a fugitive of justice for a misdemeanor charge of domestic violence out of Ohio and had been a fugitive since Sept. 5, 2012. On Dec. 29, he used a firearm, despite being prohibited due both due to the domestic violence charge and his status as a fugitive. The firearm was loaded, and there was ammunition available.
Williams will be sentenced April 15.
Shaffer noted that while he did use the firearm to shoot another person, the shooting itself was considered justified under Pennsylvania law due to using it against an unauthorized person in the home.
The person who was shot — Carlos Gamble II of Bradford — is facing criminal charges for his alleged actions that day. On Dec. 29, Gamble allegedly entered 65 Hillside Ave., Bradford, through an unlocked window and was assaulting people inside at the time he was shot.
A last-day-to-plea conference for Gamble is set for May 20.
Also in court on Thursday, Abby M. O’Rourke, 37, of Wilcox, pleaded guilty to a charge of disorderly conduct. According to Vettenburg-Shaffer, on Nov. 10, O’Rourke intended substantial harm when she hit someone in the head. O’Rourke will be sentenced May 13.
Court records indicate that other cases moved forward in McKean County Court in recent weeks.
On March 17, Julia E. Phillips, 50, of Seward, was sentenced to 18 months of probation after pleading guilty to a charge of theft by unlawful taking. Court records filed at the time she was charged alleged that she deposited a check for $16,750 into her bank account; after she learned that the check did not clear, she still mailed someone a check for $6,200 knowing that she did not have the money in her account.
Brandy J. Simbeck, 48, of Kane, pleaded guilty March 19 to charges in two cases: in one case to a charge of terroristic threats, and in the other case to DUI-alcohol and a summary charge. Court records filed at the time of her arrest in the threat case alleged that on Aug. 1 Simbeck, who was visibly intoxicated, went to a child’s birthday party at a neighbor’s house and was asked to change her attire to something more appropriate for a children’s party. She allegedly said that if the neighbor’s children and animals stepped foot on her property, she would shoot them; also, she was visibly intoxicated when police arrived and threatened police during transport to the police station. Simbeck will be sentenced April 30.