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updated: 6/10/2014 12:58 PM

Gun charge dropped against retired cop

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The gun charge filed against a retired Indiana police officer who authorities say brought a concealed weapon to a professional golf tournament in Lake Forest last year was dropped Tuesday, officials said.

Defense attorney Thomas Briscoe said the felony unlawful use of a weapon charge against Mark Fedder, 48, from Osceola, Indiana, was dismissed in front of Judge Raymond Collins after officials proved Fedder was allowed to carry the weapon as a retired law enforcement officer.

Briscoe said a prosecutor in Waukesha County, Indiana, sent Lake County State's Attorney Mike Nerheim a letter stating Fedder retired from an Indiana police force in good standing and, therefore, was allowed to carry the weapon under federal law.

"I commend Mike Nerheim for thoroughly investigating this case and doing the right thing in the end," Briscoe said after the hearing. "It was an honest mistake, including a mistake by my client who forgot to take the gun off when trying to enter the golf tournament."

Fedder was charged Sept. 16, with a misdemeanor count of attempted obstruction of justice after he tried to enter the PGA's BMW Championships at Conway Farms in Lake Forest with a concealed weapon. Nerheim upgraded that charge to a felony about a week later because Fedder did not have an Illinois concealed weapon permit.

Nerheim said Tuesday he agreed to drop the charges after an investigation revealed Fedder was allowed to carry the firearm.

"At the time of this offense, Mr. Fedder did not have these documents or proof with him," he said. "The prosecution was recently provided with proof of his qualifications and approval by Indiana police and the District Attorney in Indiana."

Under federal law, an officer who retires in good standing is allowed to carry a weapon without a permit in the United States, Briscoe said.

Fedder worked as police officer in Mishawaka, Indiana, until leaving the department in 2012, Briscoe said. He added Fedder regularly wears the firearm at his waist.

Before his arrest, Fedder immediately informed security officials at Conway Farms about the sidearm, Briscoe said.

Fedder had remained free on bond after posting $1,500 in bail.

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