On April 9, Graham Corry was on his way to dinner with friends.
He turned onto Patterson Avenue and stayed in the left lane. He passed two Collegiate school buses that were traveling in the right-hand lane of the road.
When he reached Parham Road he moved into the turning Lane behind another car and waited at the red light. The two busses pulled in behind him and stopped.
Like tens of thousands of other Virginians Corry carried a handgun legally for self defense. He intended to wear the gun at dinner which was with other gunowners who would be doing the same. He took the gun from his glovebox and placed it in the holster in his dash compartment. The reason for doing this was so he didn’t have to handle the gun in the parking lot, he merely had to strap it on.
The light turned green and he went to an enjoyable dinner and then home.
What he didn’t know was that Nathaniel Goodwyn, who was driving the bus behind him was angry that Corry hadn’t let him get into the turning Lane ahead of him.
Goodwyn had seen him move the gun and reported it to his security supervisor at Collegiate the next day, the security supervisor told an off-duty police officer who worked with the school.
At this point the story has gotten a lot like the teenage game of rumors. Each telling makes it worse. The officer obtained a warrant for brandishing a firearm.
Corry went to court on the 26th of this month. If the consequences hadn’t been so serious it would’ve been laughable. Goodwyn’s story changed several times while he was testifying for the prosecution. It reached the point to where he said Corry had glared at him and he could tell even though Corry was wearing sunglasses, a hat, and all he could see was the back of his head, that Corry had bad feelings because he focused on him.
I grew up in a legal family, married a judge’s daughter and have known dozens of judges both good and bad over the years. I have never however, seen a judge behave as badly as the one in this case. He simply did not want to hear any of the defense.
While Corry was testifying the judge was chatting with the clerk and filling out paperwork in other cases. He didn’t even bother to look at Corry.
Despite the absurdity of the charges and the testimony by Goodwyn, Corry was found guilty. To add to the judge’s misconduct, he sentenced Corry, who had no criminal record at all, to the maximum amount of jail time the law allows, then suspended half of it.
Supporters have rallied and collected money for Corry’s defense. The hub of this is on Opencarry.org. Contributions cam be made there.
Dan Hawes, one of the most respected defense lawyers in the state represents Corry.
Of course this is being appealed and we will continue to follow this case.