Prude Death Investigation

Charlie Tan pleads guilty to gun charges

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UPDATE: Charlie Tan has pleaded guilty to all counts in the case. He will be sentenced on October 18 at 10 a.m.

In court Friday, Tan, however, didn’t admit to killing his father. He only accepted blame for illegally purchasing the weapon with the intent to kill his father.

In the previous case, a judge dropped murder charges against Tan after a jury failed to reach a verdict in the case.

In a statement from District Attorney Sandra Doorley, she says Friday’s plea is justice for Jim Tan:

“With this plea in Federal Court, there is finally justice for Jim Tan. We certainly believed that our proof strongly supported Tan’s role in the homicide of his father. Today’s plea demonstrates that involvement. I want to thank our Federal partners, whom we have been working with since the inception of their investigation, for their assistance in this matter, as well as the Monroe County Sheriff’s Office for their hard work and diligence in this prosecution. Again, justice for Jim Tan!” 

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Charlie Tan is set to plead guilty to federal gun charges, according to court documents.

According to a document submitted by federal officials on Friday, Tan is set to change his not guilty plea in the case. A trial for Tan was expected to begin on Monday.

The document says Tan could face up to 25 years in prison in the case, but it’s not clear how much time he might serve under a plea deal.

Tan was arrested, but  murder charges were later dropped against him in the death of his father Jim Tan in 2015.

Last year, however, Tan was arrested by federal authorities on gun charges related to the case. According to prosecutors, Tan illegally had a college friend buy the gun used in Jim Tan’s murder after he was denied the sale at the Cortland Walmart days before his father was reported dead.

Background

According to prosecutors, on February 5, 2015, Tan emptied his bank account, a total of about $5,000, and went to the Cortland Walmart to try and buy a shotgun.

Officials say Tan was later notified his background checks had been delayed and was told to call back the following week. Tan instead contacted two college friends and eventually made a deal with one to buy the gun. According to court documents, Tan texted his friend “you wanna make a quick 100$?”

However, prosecutors say Tan told his friend the gun was for a hunting trip.

After the friend bought the gun, investigators said Tan took the weapon and went from Cornell, where he was attending college,to his Pittsford home.

In Pittsford, prosecutors said Tan met with another friend who told officials that Tan seemed upset. The friend was so concerned he called 911. Deputies responded to the Tan home and spoke with Charlie Tan who told them it was a misunderstanding.

At sometime that night, prosecutors claim Tan used the gun to shoot and kill his father. However, the death wasn’t reported until days later.

Instead, prosecutors say Tan and his mother left the country and went to Canada. On February 9, Tan returned to Pittsford and called police just after 6 p.m. to report the shooting.

At the scene, deputies said Tan told him his father was dead and the shotgun was in the garage.

At trial, defense attorneys argued there wasn’t any physical evidence to prove who fired the shotgun. Ultimately, this is why the judge dismissed the murder charges against Tan after a jury failed to reach a verdict in Tan’s murder trial. The defense also detailed extensive allegations of domestic abuse by Jim Tan against Tan’s mother.

During the trial, despite being accused of murder, Tan saw a great deal of support from friends and members of the community.

Since his arrest last fall on gun charges, Tan has been held in federal custody.

A plea hearing is set for Friday afternoon at 3:30 p.m. in Syracuse.

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