The Joplin Globe, Joplin, MO

July 10, 2013

Judge dismisses charge in case involving weapon

— A judge found a lack of probable cause for a felony weapon offense that a Carthage man was facing at a preliminary hearing Wednesday and dismissed the charge.

Associate Circuit Judge Richard Copeland ruled that there was insufficient evidence to tie Neil R. Hon, 51, to a handgun found in a safe in a bedroom of his home at 503 W. Fairview St. in Carthage. Hon has a prior felony conviction for an unlawful use of a weapon and is prohibited from possessing firearms.

Two Carthage police officers testified that they came across the gun during a walk-through of the residence where Hon was living on Jan. 15 when they were looking for the father of his ex-wife, Amber Hon.

One of the officers testified that she informed him that there was a gun in the safe and that it belonged to the defendant.

But Hon’s attorney, Erica Mynarich, called Amber Hon as a witness at the hearing, and she testified that the weapon actually belonged to another man who left it at that address in a bag of clothes and that she had put it in the safe.