Lady’s Island woman will not face federal gun charges in Ashley Hall incident

Authorities: Woman accused of attempted murder bought gun legally

achristnovich@beaufortgazette.comFebruary 8, 2013 

Alice Boland, 28, of Beaufort

The Beaufort woman accused of trying to shoot two Charleston school officials Monday will not face federal firearm violation charges at this time, according to the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

“Our investigation has revealed there was no misconduct or illegal activity in the purchase and transfer of the firearm from the licensed dealer,” Charlotte-based ATF spokesman Earl Woodham said Friday.

A police report indicates Alice Boland, 28, bought a .22-caliber handgun from Walterboro Gun Shop. She bought the gun on Feb. 1, three days before the incident, according to Charleston Police.

Charleston Police said they found in Boland’s sport-utility vehicle a gun case, instruction manual and receipt for a gun matching the one they took from Boland when they arrested her Monday.

Boland was spotted outside Ashley Hall in downtown Charleston pacing and mumbling to herself. When an employee approached her, she pulled the gun out of a handbag. About 50 children were in the area. Charleston Police say she pulled the trigger several times, but there wasn’t a round in the chamber and it didn’t fire. There were eight rounds in the magazine. One round was found on the floor of her vehicle, according to the police report.

"Based on information received this morning from the ATF, no federal charges will be filed against Alice Boland at this time," the Charleston police said in a statement released today.

An employee of the Walterboro Gun Shop declined to comment in a brief phone interview Friday afternoon.

Despite Boland’s history of mental illness, which includes a 2005 federal indictment for threatening to shoot and kill George W. Bush, authorities say the Walterboro firearms dealer made the transaction legally and that Boland was within her rights to purchase the gun.

Boland has no felony criminal history, according to the S.C. State Law Enforcement Division.

Charleston police also said Boland purchased three boxes of .22-caliber, long rifle ammunition of which two boxes of 40 rounds were still full. The third was missing nine rounds.

Boland still faces charges for attempted murder, unlawful carrying of a firearm, possession of a firearm during the commission of a violent crime and two counts of pointing a firearm.

She remains at the Sheriff Al Cannon Detention Center in Charleston with bail set at $900,000.

Check back with The Island Packet and The Beaufort Gazette for more information as it becomes available and follow reporter Anne Christnovich at twitter.com/IPBG_Anne.

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