Convicted felon gets prison for firearm offenses

By Ed Lewis - [email protected]
Pelton -

WILKES-BARRE — A Hunlock Township man is going back to prison for firearm offenses.

Christopher John Pelton was prohibited from carrying firearms as a felon after admitting to discharging a handgun inside a crowded tavern in October 2014.

Pelton, 56, of Jones Road, was sentenced in December 2015 to three months in jail followed by two years on probation for the incident at The Outpost Inn in Lehman Township.

Nearly two years later, police staked out Pelton’s house and lured him outside with a ruse involving his estranged wife dropping off prescription medication. After he was tackled to the ground, police found he was armed with a loaded .45-caliber pistol in his waistband and two loaded .38-caliber pistols in a double holster strapped around his shoulder, court records say.

Pelton was sentenced Thursday by Luzerne County Judge Joseph Sklarosky Jr. to three years on probation on three counts of firearms not to be carried without a license. He was also re-sentenced to two years in state prison for the shooting at The Outpost Inn.

Sklarosky said the probation term will begin once Pelton completes his prison time.

According to court records:

Pelton’s estranged wife called Dallas police on Sept. 29, 2017, claiming Pelton was intoxicated and aimed a handgun at her head inside a residence on Norton Avenue. She warned police Pelton was armed and if police showed up, it would not end peacefully.

She said Pelton was on opiates and took more than what was prescribed. He went without his prescriptions for several days as his wife had his prescriptions refilled.

Police devised a plan that involved the woman driving past the house and dropping the prescriptions in a bag out her car window.

An officer hid next to the house and after Pelton emerged to pick up the bag, the officer tackled Pelton to the ground as other officers converged.

Pelton was armed with three loaded pistols, including loaded magazines and two knives when he was tackled.

Pelton was prohibited from owning, carrying and possessing firearms due to his guilty plea for the shooting at The Outpost Inn.


By Ed Lewis

[email protected]