A local man learned Friday that he will be serving some hard time for having a gun while on felony probation for a previous crime.
Christopher D. Edwards, 27, of Atchison, was sentenced to 18 months in a state prison for one count criminal in possession of a firearm. Edwards was also handed 12 months of post-release supervision, and was deemed eligible for 20 percent good time credit, and credit for time served in the Atchison County Jail related to incarceration while awaiting court proceedings.
Edwards was convicted on Nov. 22, 2019, by way of a no contest plea agreement heard before the Atchison County District Court Atchison County District Court that arose from his July 17, 2019, arrest. In exchange for his plea, one felony count aggravated battery was dismissed.
Because Edwards committed the crime while serving felony probation, he was subject to a special rule. This means even though he might be considered a candidate for probation according to Kansas Sentencing guidelines, the presiding judge could determine otherwise and order the time in prison.
Edwards defense counsel, John Kurth argued for a departure from the special rule on his client’s behalf because he pleaded to the crime.
Atchison County Attorney Sherri Becker objected. Although the defendant did plea, Becker said there was a great deal of scheming involved with another party before he acknowledged the gun. Before sentencing was handed down, Edwards agreed that eight prior convictions comprise his criminal history.
Previous felony convictions include one in 2016 for theft of a firearm and a 2010 conviction for unlawful voluntary sexual relations related to fondling a child younger than 16 years of age, according to information obtained from the Kansas Criminal Justice System.