Feds indict woman after alleged Ashley Hall gun threat
CHARLESTON, SC (WCSC) - A federal grand jury has indicted 28-year-old Alice Boland in connection with the alleged gun threats which happened outside Ashley Hall in downtown Charleston last month.
According to a release from the United States Attorney's Office, the Beaufort native is facing four federal charges, including: making a false statement in order to purchase a firearm; illegally possessing a firearm because of her status as a person who had been previously committed to a mental institution or who had been adjudicated as mentally incompetent; possession of a firearm in a school zone, and attempted discharge of a firearm in a school zone.
The first two charges each carry a statutory penalty of a potential ten years imprisonment and a fine of $250,000; a term of supervised release of three years, and a special assessment of $100.
The third and fourth charges each carry a statutory penalty of a potential five years imprisonment; a fine of $100,000; a term of supervised release of one year; and a special assessment of $25.
Neither of the latter two charges can be concurrent to any other term of imprisonment imposed as the result of a conviction for any other count.
She is scheduled to appear in federal court on Mar. 27 at 9:45 a.m.
Boland is also charged with attempted murder, two counts of pointing a firearm, unlawful carrying of a firearm, and possession of a firearm during the commission of a violent crime in connection with the incident.
A preliminary court hearing on those charges was scheduled for Thursday afternoon, but it has been canceled, according to a Charleston County judge.
There were approximately 50 students and several other school officials outside the private, all-girls' school on Rutledge Avenue when Boland, armed with a loaded .22-caliber handgun, walked up to the gates a little after 3 p.m. on Feb. 4, court documents state.
Authorities say Boland then pointed the gun at an Ashley Hall school official who was on the sidewalk and pulled the trigger repeatedly. The gun never fired because there was no bullet in the chamber, ATF officials said.
She was arrested by Charleston police a short time later. She is being held in the Charleston County Detention Center under a $900,000 bond.
The case has drawn considerable attention across the United States and has prompted both federal and state lawmakers to address an apparent weakness in background checks for gun purchasers, particularly those with a documented history of mental illness.
According to an indictment, Boland knowingly lied to dealers at a Walterboro gun shop, where she purchased a gun. An indictment states Boland said she had never been ruled "mentally defective" by the courts, but she did plead not guilty several years ago to threatening to kill President George W. Bush, by reason of insanity.
The case was later dismissed by a federal judge.
Copyright 2013 WCSC. All rights reserved.