ALTON - A heated physical altercation resulted in a firearm discharging into a restaurant wall and several felonies being filed against an Alton man.

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Gerardo Garcia-Mendez, 54, of Alton, was charged with aggravated discharge of a firearm, reckless discharge of a firearm, aggravated unlawful use of weapons, aggravated assault, and battery.

According to a petition to deny his pretrial release, the incident unfolded on May 7, 2024 after Garcia-Mendez attacked a restaurant patron, who began “getting the better of him” during a physical altercation before Garcia-Mendez pulled out the firearm.

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“Defendant was identified as the suspect who attacked the victim in a restaurant, first striking the victim with his fists and an unknown object, then producing a firearm,” the petition states. “The victim was able to wrestle the defendant to the ground and it discharged, striking the wall.

“The victim gained control of the weapon and the defendant fled. He was apprehended by police and admitted to producing the firearm during the fight. Video surveillance confirmed that the defendant attacked the victim, and as the victim was getting the better of him, the defendant produced the weapon.”

The weapon used in this case was a Glock 27 handgun; Garcia-Mendez had no valid Firearm Owner’s Identification (FOID) card or Concealed Carry license at the time of the offense.

The Pontoon Beach Police Department presented the case against Garcia-Mendez, who faces a Class 1 felony for aggravated discharge of a firearm, a Class A misdemeanor for battery, and three Class 4 felonies for all other charges. He was reportedly remanded to jail until his initial court appearance.

The issuance of charges is based solely upon probable cause and is not an indication of guilt. All subjects charged with criminal offenses are considered innocent until proven guilty in a court of law.

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