Young man pleads guilty to taking gun from truck

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— One of the young men involved in the theft of a $700 rifle has pleaded guilty to a reduced charge.

Steamboat Springs resident Jon Gum, 19, was originally charged with first-degree criminal trespass of a vehicle and felony theft, but the charges were amended to a misdemeanor theft charge in exchange for his guilty plea.

Gum was sentenced to unsupervised probation for one year, 48 hours of community service and approximately $350 in fines and court costs. Another condition of his probation is to testify truthfully in any related cases involving the theft.

A one-year jail sentence was suspended, although County Judge James Garrecht gave Gum credit for seven days he spent behind bars after his arrest.

"Since he's never been incarcerated before, the seven days he did were a real eye opener," said Gum's attorney, Ron Smith.

Gum may have to make restitution for any damage to the rifle, which was recovered in a creek near Yampa after he told investigators where it was.

The loaded Remington 280 rifle was stolen from a Phippsburg man's locked truck while the vehicle was parked outside his home on Pine Street in March. Around the same time, a Phippsburg woman reported that 30 CDs valued at $500 were stolen from her unlocked vehicle while it was parked on Pine Street.

According to court documents, Gum told a sheriff's investigator that he and a 15-year-old boy took the rifle from a truck and the juvenile took some CDs from another vehicle.

Gum reportedly said Phippsburg resident Kenneth Ferrier put the rifle in his room and then called Gum about two weeks later to tell him they needed to get rid of it. Gum reportedly said he and a friend took the rifle from Ferrier's house and put it in the river.

Ferrier, 18, was charged with felony theft for receiving a gun he allegedly knew was stolen. His case will be reviewed in court on June 7.

The 15-year-old Phippsburg boy was detained on two counts of felony theft and criminal trespass.

Smith said Gum plans to move in with his grandparents this week in Rockwall, Texas, where he will do his probation.

Gum's mother, Denise Martinez, was sentenced earlier this week to four years in prison for embezzling more than $40,000 from the Steamboat Springs High School.


To reach Michelle Bales call 871-4208 or e-mail mbales@amigo.net

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