Fantasy author Joel Rosenberg was arrested December 8 for bringing a loaded gun into Minneapolis City Hall a month ago.
He is charged with possessing a dangerous weapon in a courthouse, a felony, and contempt of court, a misdemeanor, for his actions on November 5 – events he recorded in a video available on YouTube.
Rosenberg and his wife appeared for a pre-arranged meeting with Sgt. Bill Palmer, the Public Information Officer for the Minneapolis Police Department. Rosenberg’s video of the encounter with Palmer, a subsequent video mocking Palmer, and a letter to Palmer that Rosenberg posted to one of his websites, are described in a story on the local Fox affiliate’s website:
“You can’t have the gun in the building period,” Palmer said on a YouTube video recorded by Rosenberg. “If you want to make a point, I can arrest you.”
After a couple of minutes, Rosenberg agreed to leave, and after removing the bullets Palmer gave him his gun back.
“Please do not reload it until you are outside the building,” Palmer told him.
Rosenberg later poked fun at Palmer in another video that shows him pulling a half-dozen guns and a knife out of his jeans, while wearing a t-shirt that reads, “I am not armed, please don’t hurt me.”
He even posted an open letter to Palmer on his website, which said, “When you stupidly lunged at me to grab my knife and gun, you didn’t watch my hands. One of them was on my backup gun, the other was within an inch of my backup knife.”
Rosenberg disputes that City Hall is part of the courthouse. The charges say it houses a conciliation court on the third floor. A sign in the hallway connecting Minneapolis City Hall with the county Government Center states that weapons are prohibited by district court order.
Rosenberg is the author of Everything You Need to Know About Legally Carrying a Gun in Minnesota and instructs others about the state’s permit to carry law according to his Minnesota Carry Permit Training website.
County records at the time of writing show he is still in sheriff’s custody.
Additional details are available in stories on the local CBS affiliate website (Police: Man Brings Handgun, Knife Into Mpls. City Hall) and in the Minneapolis Star-Tribune (Man charged with bringing loaded gun to City Hall).
[Thanks to Steven H Silver for the story.]