Navy Official Charged With Brandishing a Firearm
The senior Navy official who allegedly waved a gun at two young men outside of his home last month has been summoned to a Virginia court on three counts of brandishing a firearm.
A man who appears to be Karnig Ohannessian, Deputy Assistant Secretary of the Navy for the Environment, was recorded on video holding a handgun and telling two young men to get in their car and leave the area. A woman, identified in reports as his wife, emerges to tell him to stop and to go back in the house.
The two men were reportedly at a party next door and had parked their car in front of Ohannessian’s house. The man alleged to be Ohannessian is seen threatening to open fire in the video: after one of the young men taunts him by repeating a street number matching Ohannessian’s listed address, the accused levels the pistol at the person holding the camera and says "I can shoot the [...] out of you guys right now.”
Ohannessian was briefly taken into custody following the incident, but was released shortly thereafter without charges filed.
The Navy put Ohannessian on administrative leave when it learned of his behavior, and a spokesman said Tuesday that he remains on leave.
The charge of brandishing a firearm is a misdemeanor offense, punishable by up to one year in jail for each count.
Ohannassian is the recipient of two meritorious civilian service awards; his bio describes his position as an advisor to the “Assistant Secretary of the Navy (Energy, Installations and Environment) on environmental programs including planning, protection, compliance, restoration and pollution prevention.”