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|July 7, 2010
Director of Communications
Brookline District Court Probation Officer Helps Remove Gun From Streets
It was a late Friday afternoon when a man, who was on pre-trial probation, showed up intoxicated for a visit with a Probation Officer at Brookline District Court.
This was the beginning of a mystery that Probation Officer Kristen Finn helped local police solve when she later identified the man who left a handgun, ammunition, and a knife in the town library where children frequent.
During the visit, Finn noted his condition, his “depressed state,” and administered the breathalyzer test into which he blew a .09.
“I was not letting him walk out of the court legally drunk and clinically depressed. I got a judge on the phone. Since there was no judge present, the clerk’s office helped me by securing a judge over the phone and the ADA (Assistant District Attorney) requested the pre-trial probationer be held on $300 bail per order of the judge,” Finn said.
Finn received a call from a Brookline police detective at 2 a.m. on her cell phone. She recalled, “He asked, 'Did you lock anyone up today?'”
When the detective provided a physical description of the man, Finn discovered that the same man had stopped at the library before his visit with her, leaving behind a 380 automatic handgun with two magazine clips, a knife, and cell phone. The library security guard found the weapons, the man’s coat and then notified police.
After he was jailed and held on the $300 bail, the man made bail and returned home that same night. The police, after determining that the individual had left the gun behind, used the information Finn provided. They showed up at his residence. The man answered the door with a rifle in his hand, according to Finn. He was subdued and arrested. The man was held on $25,000 bail.
“He was intoxicated and depressed. Who knows what he would have done. It is scary to know that he left a gun behind at the public library where there are a lot of children who spend time there,” she said.
“She did the right thing and because of her efforts, she got a gun off the streets,” said Brookline District Court Chief Probation Officer Al Gavaghan. “Through her diligence and persistence, he was held.”