NewsCovering Kern County


Docs: Marijuana advocate "a growing threat to others"

Guns seized from marijuana advocate David Abbasi's home, vehicle
Posted at 2:20 PM, May 14, 2019
and last updated 2019-05-16 18:08:37-04

BAKERSFIELD, Calif. — New details are emerging in relation to the arrest of outspoken Kern County marijuana advocate David Abbasi and the seizure of multiple firearms belonging to him.

According to court documents obtained by 23ABC news, police believe Abbasi poses "a growing threat to others" and should be prohibited from owning firearms.

Police reported in the documents that Abbasi has had numerous interactions with law enforcement recently and has "complained of anxiety, frustration, and justification of his own criminal actions."

Abbasi is accused of pointing a loaded gun at a 15-year-old boy during an argument on King Street back on Sunday, April 28. He was then arrested on Friday, May 10 after an arrest warrant was issued. Abbasi bailed out of custody on Saturday, May 11 and is scheduled to be arraigned on June 7 on three misdemeanor charges: Carrying a concealed firearm in public, carrying a loaded firearm, and exhibiting (brandishing) a firearm.

The court documents reveal investigators found that Abbasi owns 10 firearms, including the one from the April incident that resulted in his arrest. Police say Abbasi did not have the required authorization to carry a loaded gun in public, nor did he have authorization to conceal carry.

Officers then got a search warrant to seize Abbasi's nine remaining guns at his home on Niles Street as well as Abbasi's vehicle. That warrant was executed on May 10 and resulted in the seizure of three firearms:
-Mossberg 500 12-gauge shotgun
-Sig Sauer AR-15 rifle
-Sig Sauer P229 semi-auto pistol

Ammunition and other firearm related items were also seized at that time.

The documents also detail Abbasi's recent interactions with law enforcement and other county personnel, which officers describe him as increasingly volatile.

On April 30, just two days after the initial gun incident, Abbasi spoke at a Kern County Board of Supervisors meeting. During his time, Abbasi told the Board, ""I will strike down upon thee with great vengeance and furious anger those who attempt to poison and destroy my brothers. And you will know my name is the Lord when I lay my vengeance upon thee."

The quote, from Bible verse Ezekiel 25:17, is perhaps best-known from the 1994 Quentin Tarrantino film Pulp Fiction.

The court documents show on May 9, Abbasi was escorted by armed deputies from the Kern County District Attorney's office after he tried to file a complaint.

Abbasi is also facing a misdemeanor charge of operating a marijuana dispensary, a charge dating back to 2017. That case is set for a pretrial conference on June 7 and a tentative trial date of June 17.

In a phone call with 23ABC on Tuesday, Abbasi said there is ”no reasonable cause for seizing [his] guns,” adding that the charges are “completely baseless.” He said the report made by police is incorrect, that he only owns five weapons and has turned them all over as ordered. He says the charges are a “retaliation for complaining.”

About the incident that led to the charges, Abbasi said he “mistakenly” left home with his gun. He says he drew the weapon when the owner of the dog that attacked his began to hit him several times in the head. He says he was cited and released on Friday.