2013-06-25 / News

Pistol License Revoked after Scuffle with Walton Police

Lillian Browne
Staff Writer

DELHI - A Walton man was in Delaware County Court on Monday for a pistol license revocation hearing.

William Picinich, 51, was arrested on Feb. 1 for second-degree obstruction of governmental administration, resisting arrest and disorderly conduct by Walton village police. The arrest was made subsequent to a traffic stop of Picinich’s wife, Tina, on Gardiner Place in front of Danny’s Restaurant.

Picinich told Judge Carl F. Becker, “There was no reason to take my permit. The charges were fabricated by bogus cops.”

Special prosecutor Porter Kirkwood elicited testimony from Walton Police Officer Daniel St. Jacques regarding the events of that evening, that suggested otherwise.

St. Jacques testified that Picinich exited the restaurant and began yelling at his wife. “It started to appear that this was going to become a domestic,” he said. St. Jacques said Picinich then began screaming obscenities and making obscene gestures at the three Walton police officers at the scene.

The commotion, St. Jacques said, started to draw a crowd in the parking lot. “It became a sideshow. There were about a half dozen people outside (watching),” he said.

It was then, St. Jacques told the court, that Sergeant John Cornwall placed Picinich under arrest, which Picinich resisted. “It was like a tug-of-war and eventually everybody fell to the ground,” St. Jacques said.

St. Jacques described the subsequent events that led to both Picinichs being taken into custody. “Officer (Chris) Erwin was trying to place handcuffs on Mr. Picinich and he was resisting. Mrs. Picinich grabbed me around the waist, to get to her husband, and in doing so grabbed the butt of my gun,” he said.

Picinich told a different version of the events. “As I was walking back into the restaurant, they grabbed me and threw me on the ground. I couldn’t get my arms behind me. They were punching me and kicking me. St. Jacques pulled his taser out while I was on the ground, with two cops on me. He threatened to use it on me,” Picinich told the court.

Picinich told Becker that the criminal charges are still pending in the village of Walton justice court and he was led to believe that once he and his wife underwent an alcohol evaluation, the charges would be dropped. “The judge and the DA (district attorney) lied,” Picinich said.

Picinich did not present any witness testimony. “I have plenty of witnesses, but didn’t realize I should have brought them today. I thought I was coming here today to get my pistol (permit) reinstated,” he said.

Becker revoked Picinich’s pistol license saying, “The police officer testimony is clear and unequivocal that in the midst of a traffic stop of your wife, you became argumentative with the officers. You appeared to be intoxicated.” Becker reprimanded Picinich, “There is sufficient grounds to believe that you engaged in conduct which raises serious questions as to your conduct and decision making abilities to consume alcoholic beverages when you are a diabetic.”

Becker told Picinich that he does not possess the judgment necessary to possess a pistol permit.

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