Brass-Knuckle Belt Buckle Blues

On Super Bowl Sunday, registered nurse Morgan Mieras had an altercation with a woman in an Oceanside bar.

"She was kicked out of the bar," says Mieras. "She kept trying to get back in.... I shoved her out to where she was supposed to be [on the sidewalk]. She talked shit to me and I talked shit to her. Then she came up and sucker-punched the bouncer. She hit me six times."

When police arrived, says Mieras, "They asked me if I wanted to press charges." Mieras declined the offer, the police left the bar, and the situation cooled until the lady's husband showed up.

"He said he had a .45 and he'd put a slug in us," says Mieras. "When he reached for the handle of his car, the bouncer laid him out.... He was unconscious. I stayed there and tried to give the guy medical attention. The guy's wife said, 'Stay the fuck away.' But I stayed at the scene until the ambulance arrived."

When police returned, Mieras says, "Someone pointed to me and said, 'She was there.'... The cops searched me and found my belt buckle [that was in Mieras's pocket]. It was in the shape of brass knuckles. You see it on every little 15-year-old emo kid.... [But] it was aluminum. It had an extra loop for the belt and a hook on it where you hook the other side."

Mieras was arrested and charged with two felonies: assault with a deadly weapon and criminal conspiracy. Bail was set at $25,000. She forked over $2500 to get out of jail.

Oceanside Police Department Sgt. Leonard Mata does not dispute that Mieras was arrested immediately after the discovery of the belt buckle in her pocket. He says if she had been wearing the buckle, things might have gone differently.

Mieras says she purchased the buckle that day. "I collect belt buckles. I have a skull...a Cadillac emblem..."

Following her February 14 arraignment, Mieras says, "The D.A.'s office rejected the charges.... I never even had a ticket since I was 19. Now, when they pull me over and run my record it says I was charged with two felonies, but the charges were dismissed."

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