Dowagiac student takes plea deal in gun casePublished 9:40am Wednesday, December 5, 2012
CASSOPOLIS — A Dowagiac teenager pleaded guilty this week to two charges stemming from a September incident where police found guns and ammo in his vehicle parked on school property.
Phillip James Edward Kocsis, 17, pleaded guilty to an added count of carrying a concealed weapon and one count of disturbing the peace.
Cass County Prosecutor Victor Fitz said Kocsis would be applying for Holmes Youthful Trainee Act, which would allow the charges to stay off his record upon successful completion of probation.
Kocsis was originally charged with five felony and three misdemeanor counts, including carrying a dangerous weapon with unlawful intent, which carries a five-year prison sentence.
As part of a plea deal, those charges were dismissed in exchange for Kocsis pleading guilty to the two counts Monday.
“This was in consultation and agreement with the school and the affected families,” Fitz said.
Kocsis is scheduled for sentencing Jan. 25.
An M1 carbine, 12-gauge shotgun, Ka-Bar knife and ammunition were found in Kocsis’ vehicle Sept. 19 in a parking lot of Dowagiac Union High School. Kocsis is a junior at the school.
The penalty for carrying a concealed weapon is five years, while disturbing the peace is a 90-day misdemeanor.