A decorated Marine received some good news today thanks to New Jersey Governor Chris Christie.
Marine Sergeant Hisashi Pompey was convicted of a gun charge six years ago when his sidearm was ripped away from him during an altercation at a New Jersey nightclub. The fight was between Pompey’s friend and another patron at the club. The friend ripped Pompey’s gun out of its holster during the confrontation but no shots were fired. The friend was arrested, along with Pompey, because the weapon wasn’t registered in Jersey, but in Virginia.
However, under New Jersey law, there is a mandatory three-year prison sentence for unlawful possession of a handgun, according to ABC7 NY. Pompey’s attorney’s fought for appeal but lost:
“He goes into state prison next week, where he will do three years minimum before he could even get parole. This is a man who has done two tours in Afghanistan, a tour in Iraq. The only hope is for Governor Christie to exercise his power of pardon. Governor Christie in the past has stepped up and helped worthy individuals, and it’s my hope and prayer that he does the same for Sergeant Pompey.”
And that’s exactly what Gov. Christie did.
“Oh my God, oh my God, oh my God, this isn’t April Fools, right?” Pompey said after receiving news of the pardon. “I don’t know how to react. I’m grateful, grateful.”
Pompey’s wife was also very grateful, as were his young children, that he didn’t have to leave the family once again.
The Marine received medals for bravery during his service. So far, only the penalty has been pardoned, not the conviction. However, a full pardon is currently under review.
Good news for decorated Marine facing prison sentence for gun chargeThis is why blanket sentences never work. Judges need to be able to look at all crimes on a case-by-case basis. We can’t put honorable members of our military behind bars over a technicality. I’m glad this worked out for the sergeant. And a big “thank you” to Gov. Christie for doing the right thing.
“We’re all humans,” Pompey said. “Humans make mistakes.”
This is why blanket sentences never work. Judges need to be able to look at all crimes on a case-by-case basis. We can’t put honorable members of our military behind bars over a technicality. I’m glad this worked out for the sergeant. And a big “thank you” to Gov. Christie for doing the right thing.