ATFE Agents Arrest Gun Toting Man Near Billings Elementary School
Gabriel Cowan Metcalf, 49, a resident of Billings, faced federal court today (8/23) under the accusation of unlawfully possessing a firearm within close proximity to a local elementary school. The announcement was made by U.S. Attorney Jesse Laslovich. Press release HERE.
Concerned parents were sharing anecdotes on local Community Facebook pages in recent days of seeing Metcalf with a rifle in a yard directly across the street from Broadwater Elementary. The press release revealed that based on court documents, between August 2 and August 17, the Billings Police Department received multiple reports and complaints regarding Metcalf (a resident of 430 Broadwater Ave) openly carrying a firearm in the vicinity. Federal law defines the sidewalks and streets around his address, within 1,000 feet of the school, as a "school zone."
He faces a prison sentence of up to five years, a fine amounting to $100,000, and three years of supervised release, pending conviction. The man told KTVQ that he didn't want to hurt anyone and he just wanted to protect himself.
A warrant was issued by a federal judge, and agents from the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives apprehended Metcalf near his residence on Tuesday night. A search of his dwelling at 430 Broadwater Ave was executed, but at this time there are no details on what authorities were searching for or found at the residence. The DOJ reminds us that a criminal complaint is only an accusation, and a defendant is presumed innocent until proven guilty beyond a reasonable doubt.
Assistant U.S. Attorney Thomas K. Godfrey has taken charge of prosecuting the case, a joint investigation that involved the ATF and the Billings Police Department.