FARMINGTON — A Carthage man pleaded not guilty Tuesday to illegal possession of a handgun and terrorizing people with a dangerous weapon Aug. 17 in Wilton.

Michael Creig Ringer, 49, is a felon and prohibited from possessing a firearm, according to a court document.

He has been held on $25,000 cash bail at the Franklin County Detention Center since his arrest Aug. 18.

A witness told Wilton police that she, Ringer and some friends had been drinking at her residence Aug. 17  on Route 133 in Wilton, according to Wilton officer Efra Becerra’s affidavit filed with the court. There was a verbal argument between Ringer and two other people, the witness told police.

Two witnesses told police they saw Ringer point a handgun toward people, according to the document.

A witness also told police, “Michael told her that if he went to jail, he could ‘put someone way down under, where no one would find them,’” according to the affidavit.

Ringer left the gathering on foot.

Ringer’s probation officer authorized a search for alcohol at Ringer’s residence in Carthage, because he is barred from having it. Police found several empty alcohol containers, unopened containers, and a handgun Aug. 18, according to Becerra’s affidavit.

At the time of his arrest, Ringer was on probation for a September 2015 felony conviction of violation of condition of release in a separate matter. He was sentenced in that case to serve 11 months of a four-year sentence followed by two years probation.  

He admitted to a probation violation in September. 

His attorney, Thomas J. Carey, said Tuesday that he was told by a state prosecutor that the federal government is interested in looking at the case.

Deputy District Attorney James Andrews said he should know by mid-December if federal prosecutors will pursue the case. 

A conviction on each of the charges is punishable by up to five years in prison.

[email protected]

Michael Ringer (Franklin County Detention Center)

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