Montgomery County

Gun charges filed; connected with 2016 confrontation

2 of weapons recovered had been reported stolen
State police spokesman Mark Cepiel gestures toward two weapons police say they seized in 2016.
State police spokesman Mark Cepiel gestures toward two weapons police say they seized in 2016.

TOWN OF FLORIDA – One of two men who admitted to arson in a case connected to drunken allegations leveled last summer in Duanesburg now faces charges in connection to guns found at his home then, records show.

Ralph P. Olson, 46, of the town of Florida, now faces a total of seven counts in Montgomery County related to weapons and other items police said they found at his home June 29, 2016, two days after the Duanesburg incident, records show.

Police filed the weapons counts last week, more than 11 months after police said they seized the guns. State police officials this week did not have an explanation for the delay.

Two of the weapons recovered had been reported stolen, according to the charges filed.

State police charged Olson and Duanesburg resident Kenneth Montgomery shortly after the June 2016 incident with Duanesburg based charges.  

Both Olson and Montgomery pleaded guilty in March related to the Duanesburg charges. They face up to 2 to 6 years in state prison at their sentencing, now set for July.

Olson is represented on the Schenectady County charges by attorney Karen Crandall. She said this week she is not representing Olson on the Montgomery County charges and did not have a reason for the delay in filing the counts.

The two drunkenly confronted a neighboring property owner, where they accused the man of illegal dumping, police said.

The confrontation resulted in Olson and Montgomery allegedly firing over the head of property owner Sidney Dawson and setting two of Dawson’s trucks on fire.

Police then held a press conference July 1, 2016, to announce the Duanesburg charges against Olson and Montgomery.

At the press conference, police also displayed several guns they said they seized from Olson’s McDougal Road, town of Florida home in Montgomery County. But no charges were filed related to them until last week.

Olson now faces two counts each of fourth-degree criminal possession of stolen property, third-degree criminal possession of an assault rifle and third-degree criminal possession of an ammunition feeding device, along with one count of second-degree criminal possession of a weapon.

He is accused of possessing a total of six illegal guns at his residence. Two of them, an assault rifle and a pistol, were reported stolen from a single person, according to papers. He also allegedly possessed two large capacity ammunition feeding devices. 

Regarding the illegal dumping allegations, the state police said last summer they notified the DEC. Dawson had been fined twice before, in 2004 and 2007, over similar allegations.

According to a DEC spokesman, the DEC went to the site and confirmed no new dumping activity.

Categories: -News-, Schenectady County

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