January 21, 2020

Ex-mental patient from Virginia pleads guilty to weapons charge in Bangor

BANGOR — A former mental patient from Virginia who lied on an application to buy a .38-caliber handgun and ammunition faces a maximum penalty of 10 years in prison, a $250,000 fine and up to three years of supervised release after he pleaded guilty Friday to a weapons-related charge in federal court.

Charles Gove, 32, arrived in Bangor last April on a bus from Virginia and headed for the Greater Bangor Area Shelter to spend the night.

He reportedly asked a staff member at the shelter to store his weapon and ammunition, a request that prompted a quick call to the Bangor Police Department.

A computer search revealed Gove had been a patient at a mental institution in Virginia from Dec. 3, 1985, to Jan. 9, 1987, a fact that prohibits him from legally owning a gun.

An application to buy a gun, however, revealed that Gove had written “no” to a question that asks if the applicant has ever been judged mentally incompetent or been involuntarily committed to a mental institution.

Gove, who has been jailed since April, will be sentenced in the next few weeks pending completion and the judge’s review of a presentence report.

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