TV pitchman accused of kicking owl OKs gun search

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SALT LAKE CITY (AP) — A former TV pitchman in Utah accused of kicking an owl as he rode a motorized paraglider said Tuesday he will allow authorities to search his home for guns.

During a court hearing, Dell "Super Dell" Schanze called the inspection unconstitutional and said he feels exposed without weapons his lawyer said have now been removed from his home.

Federal Judge Brooke Wells told Schanze the routine search is legal, and he could be arrested if he doesn't allow agents into his home as scheduled Wednesday.

Schanze agreed to give up the weapons during a court appearance earlier this month, but authorities said he hasn't returned phone calls from agents trying to make sure he doesn't have guns at his house.

The 45-year-old Schanze is known in Utah for his over-the-top personal style and the shrill, hyperactive TV commercials that advertised his now-shuttered Totally Awesome Computers retail chain.

Schanze arrived about five minutes late to the hearing on Tuesday and wore a pair of black sunglasses throughout the proceedings.

Schanze adamantly denied ignoring calls to schedule the search.

"Call me and see if my phone rings," he said. "I called back every single time."

Judge Wells reminded him of his first appearance in the case earlier this month, when he was handcuffed after interrupting a hearing in a separate case and loudly saying it was unconstitutional to bar the defendant from having guns.

Schanze was eventually released after he agreed to several conditions, including a prohibition on possessing weapons, a common requirement in such matters.

"You remember what happened last time when you wouldn't be quiet? It could happen again," Wells told him in court Tuesday. She ordered Schanze to appear in court again on Jan. 8 if he doesn't allow the search.

Defense attorney Kent Hart said guns have been removed, even though Schanze said in court he needs the weapons because a human head had once been thrown through a window at his home. Schanze declined to elaborate after the hearing.

Police near his home in Utah County said they had no report of such an incident.

Schanze has pleaded not guilty to charges involving harassing wildlife and pursuing a migratory bird.

The charges came after a federal investigation into an online video that surfaced last year and appeared to show a paraglider kicking a soaring owl and boasting about it. Schanze says the video was a fake.

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