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Gun tattoo in Maine prompts heavy police response

  • Guntat.jpg

    March 18: Michael Smith, left, stands beside a Somerset County Sheriff deputy outside his home in Norridgewock, Maine.AP/Morning Sentinel

  • Tat2.jpg

    March 18: A trooper trains his rifle toward the home of Michael Smith in Norridgewock, Maine.AP Photo/Morning Sentinel

Police armed with assault rifles descended on a Maine man's home after members of a tree removal crew he'd told to clear off his property reported that he had a gun.

Turns out the "gun" the tree crew had seen on Michael Smith of Norridgewock was just a life-sized tattoo of a handgun on his stomach.

Smith, who works nights, was asleep when the tree crew contracted by a utility to trim branches near power lines, woke him up at about 10 a.m. Tuesday.

"I got plans today. I didn't want to get shot"

- Mike Smith

He went outside shirtless and yelled at the workers to leave. When he's not wearing a shirt, the tattoo looks like a gun tucked into his waistband.

Smith tells the Morning Sentinel the tattoo has never been a problem before.

"I got plans today. I didn't want to get shot," Smith reportedly said.

Police didn't charge him.

Smith reportedly said that he does not regret getting the life-size handgun tattoo and recalled a time he was arrested once on a warrant for an unpaid fine.

"I said, 'Yeah, I got this gun on me all the time. It's tattooed on,'" he told the arresting officer.

The Associated press contributed to this report

 

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