HANCOCK COUNTY — A Hancock County man faces felony charges amid allegations he waved a gun and fired it into the ground during a domestic dispute.
Keith Clark, 55, of Greenfield, was arrested Tuesday evening and charged with four felony counts and one misdemeanor charge related to battery and unlawful possession of a gun, court records show.
Prosecutors say Clark illegally possessed the weapon he shot near his girlfriend’s sons last week — he is a felon with a past domestic battery conviction, court documents state.
He appeared in Hancock Superior Court 1 on Wednesday afternoon and pleaded not guilty to the charges. He is slated to appear in court Sept. 6 for a pre-trial conference.
When interviewed by police, Clark said he and a woman got into a fight July 7, charging documents state. He asked the woman to leave his home because his grandchildren were visiting, and he didn’t want to fight in front of them.
The next day, the woman’s sons stopped by Clark’s home, and Clark assumed they were there to talk about the fight Clark had with their mom, court records state.
One of her sons was visiting from out of town and had been staying at Clark’s house. He and his brother stopped by to pack up his belongings, and one of the sons lunged at Clark, provoking a fight, Clark told police.
Clark asked the son to leave his home, and when he wouldn’t, Clark fired a bullet from his gun into the floor, he told police.
When police interviewed the other men — who are not charged — about the incident, they told officers they met their mother on July 7 in Indianapolis and noticed she had a black eye and blood on her face, court records state. When they asked her what happened, she told them she had been in a fight with Clark, charging documents state.
The woman and her sons chose to stay at hotel that evening rather than return to Clark’s home. When the sons went to grab their belongings, including the insulin one son needs to control his diabetes, they questioned Clark about his fight with their mother, according to court documents.
Clark then pulled out a gun, pointed it at the men and told them to get out of his house. While one brother went to grab his things, Clark threatened the other, standing over him with the gun, court records state. He pulled the trigger and shot at the floor, according to charging documents.
Police say Clark shouldn’t have a gun because he’s been convicted of felony battery in Marion County, making it illegal for him to carry a weapon.
The charges Clark faces are: a Level 4 felony count of unlawful possession of a firearm by a serious violent offender; a Level 6 felony count of pointing a firearm, a Level 6 felony count of criminal recklessness with a deadly weapon, a Level 6 felony count of domestic battery and unlawful possession of a firearm by a domestic batterer, Class A misdemeanor.
A Level 4 felony carries a penalty of two to 12 years and up to $10,000 in fines. A Level 6 felony comes with a penalty of six months to 2.5 years.