Baseball bat, gun-toting woman sentenced to probation

Baseball bat, gun-toting woman sentenced to probation
Woman convicted, given probation after wielding bat, gun inside Mid-City bar.

NEW ORLEANS (WVUE) - A New Orleans woman who threatened customers of a Mid-City bar with a baseball bat and a gun in December 2016 was convicted of aggravated assault Thursday.

Jessica McPherson, 39, was found guilty as charged on single counts of aggravated assault with a firearm, simple assault and simple battery.

Orleans Parish Criminal District Judge Karen Herman rendered the verdicts at the end of a bench trial that began May 18 and resumed Thursday.

Herman sentenced the woman to three years of suspended probation, and placed McPherson under one year of active probation. McPherson also was banned from purchasing or possessing a firearm during her period of probation.

McPherson was found guilty based on an incident that occurred at the Mid-City Yacht Club on the night of Dec. 12, 2016.

According to witnesses and New Orleans police, McPherson entered the bar shortly after 10 p.m. and began threatening to fight while swinging a baseball bat.
The defendant left the bar, but returned shortly after 10:40 p.m with a gun threatening to open fire. She was tackled, disarmed and pinned to the ground by customers until police arrived. Arresting officers described her as having slurred speech and the odor of alcohol on her breath.

In February 2017, McPherson withdrew her plea of not guilty and entered a new plea of not guilty by reason of insanity. After hearing testimony from mental health doctors retained by the defense and state, Herman said her claim was without merit.