Seattle man hid gun in bushes in order to cross border

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A Seattle man is facing a possible charge of reckless endangerment after he hid his Glock pistol in some bushes on Marine Drive in order to cross the border into Canada, which restricts handgun imports.

On December 4 at about 7 p.m., Blaine police were dispatched to the Peace Arch port of entry to assist CBP, who had detained Karim Ayesh, 50. Upon arrival, a CBP officer explained that earlier in the day, Ayesh had declared a firearm when applying for entry into Canada. CBSA had temporarily seized the firearm and brought the gun and Ayesh to the U.S. port of entry, where Ayesh was checked for warrants and found to be able to legally possess the handgun.

A short time after he was denied entry into Canada and released back into the U.S., Ayesh again returned to the border and applied for entry into Canada a second time. This time, he did not have the firearm with him. He was again denied entry and returned to U.S. Customs, where he was questioned about the location of his firearm.

After allegedly stating that he had left the gun in some bushes somewhere in Blaine, Blaine police were called to investigate. After a Blaine officer arrived at the border, Ayesh admitted to bringing a gun into Blaine and was told to stop talking. He was advised of his Miranda rights but made no request for an attorney and continued speaking with the Blaine officer.

“Ayesh explained that he had been going up to Canada to pick up his brother, did not realize he would not be able to bring his gun to Canada and, when he was sent back, asked U.S. CBP if he could store his gun at the port while he picked up his brother,” said the Blaine officer’s report. “U.S. CBP told him they do not store guns, and he was unable to locate any other storage place. Ayesh did not want to take the time to drive back to his home in Seattle to store the gun and instead drove to the 200 block of Marine Drive.”

According to the police report, Ayesh said that he parked on Marine Drive, walked about 15 feet away from the parking spot and hid the gun in some bushes. He said the gun, a Glock 17 9mm pistol, was left in the plastic bag that CBSA had originally placed it in. The pistol had the slide locked open with two zip ties. Also in the bag was a magazine loaded with 18 rounds.

The Blaine officer asked Ayesh to describe the exact location of the firearm, and quickly called another officer to locate the weapon before it was discovered by a member of the public. The second officer who was dispatched to Marine Drive found the Glock within 12 minutes.

“I found the gun in a clear plastic bag that was covered by leaves and two broken branches from the brush,” reported the second officer. “I noticed a white corner of the plastic bag stick out from the leaves and broken branches. The gun was in front of the bushes about 10 feet away from the sidewalk. I believe if someone was walking their dog or just walking through the leaves, they would have found the gun.”

The gun was seized as evidence, and Ayesh was notified that the gun had been located and that charges of reckless endangerment would be forwarded to prosecutors. “The gun would have been quickly accessible and usable to any person who had discovered it from the time Ayesh left the gun to when it was located by an officer,” said the police report. “Ayesh, by his conduct, created a substantial risk of serious bodily injury or death to the public of Blaine by leaving the gun where it was.”

Asked by the officer if he had any questions, “Ayesh replied that he did not have questions and stated something similar to, ‘People make mistakes,’” said the police report. Ayesh was released back into CBP custody and no further police action was taken.

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