Weapons charges against a truck driver arrested in Michigan last year have been reduced due to confusion over variations in gun laws state-to-state. 

Trucker Gary L. Brown of Texas was arrested on September 2nd, 2020 following a routine traffic stop by the Michigan State police in Branch Township. During the traffic stop, it was revealed that Brown was in possession of concealed firearms inside of his truck, something that is legal in his home state of Texas but illegal in Michigan where he was pulled over, reported Ludington Daily News.

After his arrest, Brown was initially charged with three counts of carrying a concealed weapon, which is a felony. However after a review of the case, Brown was able to instead plead guilty to two misdemeanor charges – attempting to possess a loaded firearm in a vehicle and failure to present a non-residential permit to carry a concealed weapon. 

“I didn’t realize I was breaking any laws here,” Brown said, “so I was surprised when I got pulled over and arrested.”

Despite the reduced charges, Brown was still ordered to pay $325 in fines, costs, and other court fees as well as the forfeiture of his weapons and ammunition, worth about $4,000, by Judge Susan K. Sniegowski, a ruling Brown’s attorney did not agree with. 

“This man lives and makes his living in his truck,” said Brown’s attorney, James Makowski. “Everything he owns is in that truck. He needs something to defend himself.”

“I don’t know whether you are aware of it or not, but during the last 18 months or so, with all of the unrest in the country, there have been at least 30 truckers killed,” he continued. “You can understand why he wants something to defend himself with.”

Judge Sniegowski says she will keep Brown’s probation file open for the next six months or until the money she ordered due has been paid and the guns and ammo are forfeited.