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Man who fired shots in Monessen bar sentenced

Rich Cholodofsky
| Saturday, Aug. 23, 2014, 12:01 a.m.

A Washington County man was released from jail on Friday after he was sentenced for endangering patrons during a Monessen bar shooting two years ago.

Westmoreland County Judge Richard E. McCormick Jr. sentenced Calvin Goggins of Donora to serve 11 12 to 23 months in jail but gave him credit for the time he has served behind bars since his arrest on Sept. 6, 2012 and paroled him immediately.

During a jury trial in July, prosecutors contended Goggins, 62, threatened his former girlfriend and her new boyfriend over the telephone, then stormed into the Steel City Grille 15 minutes later to confront the pair.

Police said Goggins fired three shots from his .25-caliber semiautomatic handgun. No one was injured.

Defense lawyer Jack Manderino claimed during the trial that Goggins did not intend to injure anyone in the shooting and perhaps just attempted to frighten his former girlfriend and her new beau.

Jurors deliberated 90 minutes before they found Goggins not guilty of attempted murder and aggravated assault charges. The jury convicted Goggins of reckless endangerment and a firearms offense.

The jury initially found that Goggins was ineligible to carry a gun because he was a convicted felon.

McCormick on Friday granted a defense motion for acquittal on the firearms charge, which was based on a conviction in Ohio of cocaine possession.

Assistant District Attorney Allen Powanda said Pennsylvania state law required the judge to find Goggins not guilty of that offense because a comparable charge in Pennsylvania would be a misdemeanor.

“He was not ineligible to have a gun in Pennsylvania,” Powanda said.

Rich Cholodofsky is a staff writer for Trib Total Media. He can be reached at 724-830-6293 or rcholodofsky@tribweb.com.

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