Charges expected in Assembly Hall incident

CHAMPAIGN — A Champaign man is expected to be formally charged after allegedly trying to bring weapons into the Assembly Hall.

University of Illinois police say 64-year-old Kenneth Bergman was arrested at around 9 p.m. Saturday.

UI police Capt. Roy Acree said Bergman was talking to people outside the arena and said some suspicious things that led those people to call police.

He had claimed to be a part of the Assembly Hall security team, and when officers searched him, they found two 6-inch throwing knives, a spring-loaded expandable baton, a Taser, a can of pepper spray, a razor blade and two live rounds of ammunition.

Acree said officers had dealt with this man before.

"We are 100 percent sure that this was an isolated incident, that he was not working with anybody else, that his intentions were not to go into the Assembly Hall and harm anybody," Acree said. "It was just this person that clearly is dealing with some issues.

"Once it was discovered that he did have some weapons on him and that he also had some weapons in his vehicle, he was taken into custody, arrested, and we did tow his vehicle."

Bergman is expected to be formally charged later this week. He was also issued a no-trespassing letter.

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Jsmith68 wrote on March 25, 2013 at 5:03 pm

Wait!!  Were cameras used in any way to apprehend this man?  If so we demand disclosure as to the locations of the cameras as well as how long the video will be kept.  We also demand to know all investigative avenues that have been pursued to prove it was him on the video.  Also, were the witnesses credible and a hand written statement obtained from all of them?  Was the man advised of his Miranda rights immediately after his arrest, and before any unalwful search was conducted?  Lastly, was the State's Attorney consulted and will she be issuing a statement about the arrest?

Thought I would get a head start on Local Yocal.......

Sid Saltfork wrote on March 25, 2013 at 7:03 pm

Jsmith68;  Thanks, I needed some humor on a snowy day.  I doubt Local Yocal cares about 64 year old, Kenneth Bergman though.  Bergman does not match Local Yocal's demographics, and conspiracy theories.

Orbiter wrote on March 25, 2013 at 8:03 pm

<blockquote>A Champaign man is expected to be formally charged after allegedly trying to bring weapons into the Assembly Hall.</blockquote>

<blockquote>Acree said...  "We are 100 percent sure that... his intentions were not to go into the Assembly Hall and harm anybody," </blockquote>

This story seems self-contradictory.  Was the suspect going to take weapons into the hall or not?  Could use some clarity here.

Larkin143 wrote on March 25, 2013 at 9:03 pm

I was at this event and as I was leaving I was confronted by this man inside the hall. He was wearing a black trench coat and was walking along the floor seating on the left side of the stage. He said to me, "I am a volunteer."  "I am a volunteer."  I was two feet away from him and looked directly at him as he approached me on my way out from floor seating. He was inside the Assembly hall at 7:30 PM.  

Bulldogmojo wrote on March 25, 2013 at 10:03 pm

If only he had waited until concealed carry went into effect.

Am I right 2nd amendment literalist loonies?

I wonder if he was just hanging out with his live ammo waiting to get picked for the AR-15 raffle.

Sid Saltfork wrote on March 25, 2013 at 11:03 pm

The event was Winter Jam.  What was his motive for attending?  The police had experience with him before.  

Yes, there is a need for security cameras with manned monitors.

virtualAnonymity wrote on March 25, 2013 at 11:03 pm

here's your milk bone to chew on...since you seem to be begging...


the report alludes to him having obvious mental conditions.  sounds like he tipped far enough.


he probably doesn't have a 7 foot long manifesto.  not everyone with mental issues will act out with mass murder.


your attacks on guns and the 2A are tiresome.  Even the left elitists see the emotional ploy is over.  The Senate seems to be less than thrilled to pass anything.  You can blame the NRA bogeyman, but its the people that vote.  That's who the Senate is reacting to.  You can argue about who votes.  But your vote and my vote seemingly will cancel out.  Sorry.  Now Bloomberg is on a revenge mission for those that will vote against anything the Senate might bring up.  How did this guy pass as a republican.


I read the ammo manufacturers are hiring.

Bulldogmojo wrote on March 26, 2013 at 12:03 am

Of course he has mental issues; he feels the need to walk around in public armed to the teeth!

What does it matter if the imaginary voices in his head didn't sign the bill of rights like the imaginary voices in your head have claimed to have done? Interesting how you people claim those who want to escalate matters with weapons as loyal consitutionalists one minute and deny them when they no longer suit your arguments the next. How can the rest of us tell the difference before it's too late?

So what does Bloomberg have to do with this? I could care less about Bloomberg. He is a bored billionaire who doesn't know what to do with himself. His stop and frisk policies (walking while black) are an affront to the fourth amendment and civil rights. You are aware this event happened in Illinois not New York City right? 

My attacks on the NRA and 2A literalist creeps are only with words. Everyone is alive to tell the tale afterword, not so much with the armed crazies who think they have a god given calling for settling issues with weapons. I'm sure the founding fathers had stun guns and expandable batons in mind as well as 100 round equipped AR-15's for you to tuck under your trench coats to make feel safe and warm since your intellect has clearly abandoned you.

If they are hiring at the ammo factory it is surely out of demand by prepper lunatics who are looking to tease out of life an opportunity to kill on a grand scale.

virtualAnonymity wrote on March 26, 2013 at 8:03 am

You are focusing on the wrong prepper, the biggest prepper of all is DHS. 

Go figure, you ridicule it as hoarding by a vigilante neighbor, but let us see you explain why DHS and its hoarding is not to be feared.  Why does a federal agency need to be on the path to Gestapoville.  If DHS is just defending the border, then say so.  Let the border jumpers see the teeth of enforcement.  If they are defending the border, it says too me someone realizes a real problem.  But why do they need bullet proof ticket booths?  Will they be asking for papers.  We will they need such a booth?

You seem to be waffling.  Stop and frisk is bad in regards to the 4th, but your policy on guns is worse.  Its tramples a lot more. 

The founders realized power in govt needs a check.  Obviously our three branches has become a force to itself as long as the cards do not tumble. 

Bulldogmojo wrote on March 26, 2013 at 8:03 am

Well if some Alex Jones type rises from the crowd with a book on "his struggle" and refers to other humans in deficit language like, oh...lets say, "border jumpers" and the need to eliminate a race or class of people then I guess I will start to worry. You wanted to give up your rights under the partiot act to DHS to stop the boogeyman and now you are wondering why they are taking advantage of that?

No worries our government is too incompetent to carry out an actual conspiracy which is why I sleep better at night knowing wikileaks and "anonymous" have all that under control. Its the once sober minded gun owner who bides his time buying guns to protect his other guns and then goes insane, that this nation really needs to worry about because they have already begun to carryout their holocaust.

Aurora theater

Sandy Hook

Sikh Temple Milwaukee

Virgina Tech

NIU

and so on and so on...

Local Yocal wrote on March 26, 2013 at 11:03 am
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"I doubt Local Yocal cares about 64 year old, Kenneth Bergman though.  Bergman does not match Local Yocal's demographics,..." Actually, the question is does the State's Attorney care and does Bergman match the State's Attorney's demographics for prosecution or civil commitment?  Bergman was concealing "...two 6-inch throwing knives, a spring-loaded expandable baton, a Taser, a can of pepper spray, a razor blade and two live rounds of ammunition," on his person; and "Bergman was talking to people outside the arena and said some suspicious things that led those people to call police," and is a, "... person that clearly is dealing with some issues," and "...he also had some weapons in his vehicle,..." but is being held on a $10,000 bond, needing only $1,000 to get out of jail.  Are we, as a public, "100 percent" okay with such a low bond in these circumstances? I guess the arraignment judge will decide later today.

Sid Saltfork wrote on March 26, 2013 at 12:03 pm

Aw.. yes, back to the State's Attorney conspiracy theory.  So far; Dept. of Homeland Security, and the State's Attorney are hatching conspiracies according to the comments.  What is the next conspiracy theory on the article?  Will it be the police, or security cameras?

SaintClarence27 wrote on March 27, 2013 at 8:03 am

I guess Local isn't aware of how bond works. It is unconstitutional to set bond so high as to be unreachable just for the sake of making it so. Also, the judge is the one that sets it.

Local Yocal wrote on March 27, 2013 at 12:03 pm
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Tell that to the judge who set Uriah Fosdick's bond, $750,000, and Fosdick had no weapons.

SaintClarence27 wrote on March 27, 2013 at 12:03 pm

He was simply determined more likely to flee then. It's based on what is required to make the person comply.

Bulldogmojo wrote on March 26, 2013 at 3:03 pm

No "we as a public" are alarmed at people who can't wait for concealed carry to start so they can do the exact same thing. Walking around armed to the teeth while mumbling gibberish under their breath about homeland security conspiracies.

Local Yocal wrote on March 26, 2013 at 6:03 pm
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Ironic that pending conceal and carry legislation in the Illinois Legislature will render the Unlawful Use of Weapons charge currently leveled against Bergman obsolete, and with the "Jakobsson Additions" vetted out of the legislation, Bergman's strolling around with weapons on school grounds a legal possibility.

Whatever made members of the public call the police on this guy, the "suspicious behavior," and whatever made police believe Bergman "has issues," leaves Bergman on the hook for a misdemeanor Disorderly Conduct charge. Bergman, with no criminal history, will be elgible for a community-based sentence.

Again, the lack of mental health institutions leaves no options for the criminal justice system to file involuntary commitment proceedings against this guy, and if that option were available, he would not be released as soon as he raised a $1000, which is the current situation.   

Regardless, the future is now....how do we like our brave, new Conceal and Carry World? The Bergman case here probably justifies for some the need for others to be concealin' and carryin' too. Shoot outs at Assembly Hall will have a whole new meaning. What will be the reaction of the CC crowd when they stumble upon a Bergman? No need to call police, just take matters into your own hands? "I'm a volunteer, I'm a volunteer..." "Well, so am I,..." Pow! 

Other questions of the New System is how effective it will be to get the word out to all area weapons retailers, including out-of-state, internet weapons dealers, that Kenneth P. Bergman is no longer elgible to buy tasers, throwing knives, retractable batons, not to mention the far more lethal firearms and live ammunition. How thorough and effective is that going to be at keeping Kenneth from re-loading up his trunk and trench coat again?

Wait for it, wait for it:...."criminals always find a way to get weapons, that's why they are  called criminals."      

serf wrote on March 26, 2013 at 10:03 pm

 "I'm a volunteer, I'm a volunteer..." "Well, so am I,..." Pow! 

 

LOLZ

SaintClarence27 wrote on March 27, 2013 at 8:03 am

Ironic that pending conceal and carry legislation in the Illinois Legislature will render the Unlawful Use of Weapons charge currently leveled against Bergman obsolete,

Is that the case though? I thought attempting to bring weapons into a sporting event was still banned, so it would still be unlawful use of weapons. Same as flying (except a state, rather than Federal, charge).

TheChiefLives wrote on March 27, 2013 at 9:03 am

You are correct.  It was illegal however you look at it, and it still will be when cc is ratified.

I am concealed carry proponent, having been licensed while serving in the military, living in a state that allowed it.  There are many places where you may not carry.  It is not a blanket, you-can-carry-everywhere policy.  Property/business owners still have discretion whether to allow cc on their property.  You still cannot carry in/around schools, federal buildings, sporting events, state/local government buildings (in most states), and in some places, alcohol-serving establishments.

SaintClarence27 wrote on March 27, 2013 at 8:03 am

Given that the officers had dealt with him before, and it seems like he has mental illness issues, it could be that he has just always carried around weapons of that sort.

Local Yocal wrote on March 27, 2013 at 11:03 am
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According to the law (720 ILCS 5/24-1) as currently written: the mere act of "possessing" and "carrying" razors, a retractable baton, and the throwing knives, on his person is a Class A misdemeanor, as is possessing and carrying a taser if police have evidence that Bergman intended to harm people. Since Bergman carried on school grounds, it's a Class 4 felony. If Bergman intended to harm people with the taser, then Bergman could be charged with a Class 3 felony. I could be wrong about all that.

It looks like the State's Attorney is only going after Bergman for concealing the taser on his person, and only charging a Class A misdemeanor, ignoring the aggravating circumstance of being on school grounds.

My understanding is the legislative war in Springfield over Conceal and Carry is the proponents of CC don't want there to be "swiss cheese" areas where certain places are declared "weapon-free zones," because that would notify the bad guys where they could go to do their bad things and not face any return fire.

TheChiefLives wrote on March 27, 2013 at 11:03 am

In most states, those gun-free places are easily defined.  All license holders must know what the law allows, and it turn, where they cannot carry.  In Kansas, you could not carry in government buildings, around schools, in bars, or in any business where the owner had a "no guns" sign on the entrances. 

Does it make those places targets?  It may, but I feel strongly that a business owner should be able to make his/her own decision whether guns are allowed in their business.  A law that took this decision away from the property owner or business would infringe on property rights.

Furthermore, if you were to be caught carrying in any of those places that are deemed "gun-free" you would be trated as if there were NO cc law on the books.  Basically, your cc permit is not honored or valid in such places.

If the legislature is, in fact, fighting for this "no swiss cheese" approach, as you define it, I would be opposed to that measure, and frankly the bill as a whole.  With that said, I continue to support CC as long as it is implemented intelligently.

Sid Saltfork wrote on March 27, 2013 at 12:03 pm

TheChiefLives;  Your comments are some of the most intelligent comments that I have seen on the conceal and carry controversy.  If the other people clammering for conceal and carry would have the same opinions, it would appease many of those who oppose it like myself.  The Springfield Register Journal has an article today regarding the waiting time for FOID cards being processed.  Many of the comments were for the abolishment of FOID cards based on opinions regarding the Second Amendment.  Previous comments on conceal and carry were for carrying a concealed gun any where the owner wanted to carry a gun regardless of if it were in a school, government facility, bar, church, or store.  Which ever way it goes, the existing penalties regarding guns need to be enforced to the maximum. 

Sesame Street Live will be at the Assembly Hall toward the end of April.  I would not want anyone carrying a gun, or weapon around my grandchildren.