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Attorneys try to suppress evidence in ex-politician's gun case

LOCKPORT - A hearing has been set for Dec. 7 on a defense effort to suppress the evidence that led to the arrest of a former State Senate candidate on gun possession charges.

Gia M. Arnold, who was living in Albion when she ran unsuccessfully in the Republican primary in Niagara and Orleans counties in 2014, was arrested in Niagara Falls about 10:30 p.m. Feb. 10. Opposition to the state SAFE Act gun control law was the centerpiece of Arnold's campaign in the 62nd Senate District two years ago.

Arrested with her was Halim Johnson, 18, of Centre Avenue in the Falls, who was driving the car in which Arnold, 26, of Rochester, was a passenger.

Police stopped the auto at 15th Street and Haeberle Avenue for failure to signal a turn, and said they found an assault rifle jammed between the seat and the passenger door, which Arnold tried to conceal by throwing a coat over it. They also found an ammunition clip on Arnold's seat.

Defense attorneys James M. Ostrowski, for Arnold, and James J. Faso Jr., for Johnson, are challenging the legality of the police search of the vehicle.


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