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LOCKPORT – Clifford J. Meteer, who according to his attorney had a “meltdown” Sept. 2 when he threatened suicide with an illegal handgun, avoided jail time Thursday.

Attorney Robert Viola said Meteer, 58, of Second Street, Youngstown, was a law-abiding citizen with no prior offenses. Niagara County Judge Sara Sheldon Farkas questioned that, noting that Meteer had an illegal gun and admittted smoking marijuana weekly.

She did place him on five years’ probation for fourth-degree criminal possession of a weapon and tampering with physical evidence. Viola blamed the incident on an overload of work and marital stress.

Sheriff’s deputies reported that Meteer put a gun in his mouth and when Youngstown police arrived, he reportedly charged an officer while yelling “Shoot me.” After Meteer was subdued, officers confiscated a loaded Ruger .380-caliber handgun, nine shotguns and a Samurai sword.