Man, Facing Foreclosure, Brings Gun to Court

Thomas Pridgeon charged with unlawful use of a weapon

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    Thomas Pridgeon

    A South Side homeowner about to be evicted from his home as a result of a foreclosure showed up for a Monday court hearing with a loaded handgun, authorities said.

    Thomas Pridgeon, of the 7300 block of South Laflin Street, was charged with unlawful use of a weapon after he was arrested at the security post at the Daley Center.

    He was in court to turn over ownership of the home to a private lender in North Carolina, which had bid on it at a tax sale, a release from Cook County Sheriff Tom Dart's office explained.

    As he came into the Daley Center for the hearing, he placed his briefcase on a screening machine as he passed through a metal detector. A deputy noticed the outline of a weapon in the briefcase as it went through, authorities said. 

    Pridgeon claimed he'd forgotten the .45 caliber handgun, loaded with one bullet in the chamber and seven more in the clip, was there.

    The 48-year-old was ordered held on $100,000 bond during a court appearance Tuesday.  A preliminary hearing on the gun charge was scheduled for Aug. 30.