ASSAULT and weapons charges have been denied by a man accused of pointing a gun at volunteer firefighters while they were working near Tamworth.
Michael Stephen Finch appeared in Tamworth Local Court when his case was called, and the court heard he would admit to three of the allegations against him, but would fight ten other charges.
Aboriginal Legal Service solicitor Joseph Healey told the court Finch pleaded not guilty to eight counts of common assault; carrying a firearm in a manner likely injure people or property; and using an offensive weapon with the intent to commit an indictable offence.
The 41-year-old entered pleas of guilty to three counts of not keeping a firearm safely.
A solicitor from the state prosecuting authority, the DPP, confirmed it had considered taking on the case but had ultimately decided not to, and the matter had been handed back to police to deal with.
"It's a local court matter now," magistrate Julie Soars said.
Mr Healey asked the court for an adjournment to look at evidence with the accused, after the DPP chose not to elect the case.
"I'm going to need some time to go through the brief with Mr Finch," he said.
Ms Soars agreed to a short delay, and set the next court date for late July.
Finch is facing the string of assault and weapons charges after he was allegedly armed with a firearm outside his property when police officers were called to Appleby Lane on the morning of April 24.
The police case is that a crew of volunteer firefighters were conducting controlled burns in the area, about 20km north of Tamworth, when Finch allegedly pointed a rifle at them.
Police allege they spoke with the accused at the time and found three firearms and ammunition inside a vehicle at the property, which were seized.
Finch was granted strict conditional bail in the days after his arrest on the outskirts of Tamworth.
"Sir, bail is continuing," Ms Soars told him.
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