A Mississippi man who fired gunshot blasts at a town of Bristol strip club after he was tossed out in March pleaded guilty Thursday to a felony and a misdemeanor.
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Zachary M. Leonard, 30, of Brandon, Mississippi, pleaded guilty to discharging a firearm toward a building, a felony, and misdemeanor criminal damage to property for the March 3 incident outside Club Bristol, 7653 Highway N,
which happened after he was kicked out of the club following a dispute with another patron.
Under a plea agreement, prosecutors will seek up to 30 months in prison for Leonard. He faces up to 12½ years of combined prison and extended supervision for the felony conviction and up to nine months for the misdemeanor.
Kicked out of strip club, well-armed man fires shotgun blasts at building, complaint alleges
The agreement also anticipates that on the day of his sentencing Leonard will also plead guilty to first-offense drunken driving and pay a $150 fine with a nine-month driver’s license revocation.
Dane County Circuit Judge Ellen Berz will sentence Leonard in April.
The incident at Club Bristol was among those decried by local residents who have complained about violence, noise, and other problems connected to the club.
Most recently, the club temporarily closed in November after gunfire erupted in or near its parking lot for the fourth time in 2021.
Last spring, the club and the town of Bristol reached a deal in which the club agreed to find a new location within two years and in the meantime would boost security at its current location.
A criminal complaint states that a short time after Leonard was kicked out of the club, an employee heard three gunshots and went outside to see Leonard fire another shotgun blast into the side of the building.
He continued to fire while everyone in the club hit the floor, the complaint states.
Police found Leonard in his truck a short distance away in a ditch. His preliminary blood alcohol concentration was 0.318 percent, nearly four times the legal limit for drivers in Wisconsin. Five guns were also found in his truck including a shotgun, two handguns and two “AR15-type” rifles.
Berz ordered the guns, taken by the Sheriff’s Office as evidence, forfeited and destroyed.
Photos of the year: A look back at the Wisconsin State Journal's top photos of 2021
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Jase Frost-Ohlsen, 12, uses a rope swing he made with his brother to dangle over the Yahara River in Madison, Wis., Monday, May 3, 2021. AMBER ARNOLD, STATE JOURNAL
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Peyton Hein, left, a senior at Waunakee High School, and Jacky Duarte, a senior at Sun Prairie High School, watch Sun Prairie's season-opening spring football game against Verona from a parking lot outside the new Bank of Sun Prairie Stadium at Ashley Field in Sun Prairie, Wis., Friday, March 26, 2021. AMBER ARNOLD, STATE JOURNAL
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Members of UW-Madison’s Class of 2021 revel in the chance to do one last “jump around” during the 2021 Spring Commencement at Camp Randall Stadium in Madison, Wis. Saturday, May 8, 2021. JOHN HART, STATE JOURNAL
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Fans of the Milwaukee Bucks celebrate during the fourth quarter in the “Deer District” outside Fiserv Forum in Milwaukee, Wis., Tuesday, July 20, 2021. The team earned a 105-98 win over the Phoenix Suns to win their first NBA Championship title since 1971. JOHN HART, STATE JOURNAL
Milwaukee Bucks Grand Dancer Juju Gramms hands out "Fear the Deer" towels to fans gathered at the Deer District in Milwaukee, Wis., Wednesday, July 14, 2021. KAYLA WOLF, STATE JOURNAL
Waunakee’s Sarah Bova, left, and Chloe Larsen, right cross the finish line of the girls 400 meter dash as the event’s winner, Brooklyn Sandvig of Chippewa Falls falls to a first place finish in the event during the WIAA Division 1 state track and field championships at UW-La Crosse in La Crosse, Wis., Saturday, June 26, 2021. JOHN HART, STATE JOURNAL
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Snow and frost hold to the branches of trees along University Bay Drive on the campus of UW-Madison in Madison, Wis. Monday, Jan. 4, 2021. JOHN HART, STATE JOURNAL