Man unable to use arms faces gun possession charge

TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — A man who can’t use his arms because of a spinal condition is being held in jail while facing a gun possession charge his lawyer calls shocking.

Bail was lowered Tuesday for Marcus Hubbard, who has been jailed since his arrest in Trenton in August.

Defense lawyer Caroline Turner said the case against Hubbard, who injured his spine in a car accident and may have Lou Gehrig’s disease, “shocks the conscience.”

“How could (he be) held for four months on a gun charge?” Turner said during the bail hearing. “He cannot move his arms. They are useless to him.”

Hubbard, who’s from Salem, has been hospitalized in protective custody since his arrest, The Times newspaper reported (http://bit.ly/1Gr2SKz ). He wore a back brace in court on Tuesday and had difficulty standing, the newspaper said.

Authorities say Hubbard and three other men were in a car that ran a red light in Trenton and was pulled over. They say inside the car police officers found a stolen handgun in a seatback pocket and a prescription bottle of codeine. All four men were charged after none of them took responsibility for the items.

A state judge agreed during Tuesday’s hearing to lower Hubbard’s bail from $100,000 to $35,000. But Turner said she’ll continue her efforts to have Hubbard freed without bail.

Police said the gun was stolen from Anchorage, Alaska. Turner said the other men arrested in the car with Hubbard told police it didn’t belong to him and he shouldn’t be charged.

Prosecutors acknowledged Hubbard has no use of his hands but said he still could be guilty of a crime.

Turner said prosecutors are misstating constructive possession laws, which allow charges for someone who isn’t possessing an item but can and intends to exert control over it himself or through other people, The Times reported.

 

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

 

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