Thursday, July 27, 2017

SC: Young Woman pulled Gun to Protect People from Car Rampage


A young woman with a concealed weapons permit and a gun was on the scene at the terrorism-like attack on mourners at Greenlawn Memorial Park and might have prevented further bloodshed.

The presence of a gun was confirmed by Jennifer Timmons, a spokeswoman for the Columbia Police Department.

Read more here:

More Here

IL: Party Guest Shoots Dog that bit Homeowner

YORKVILLE, IL — A party guest shot and killed a dog that attacked a homeowner Friday evening in Yorkville, police said. The dog, a tan and white husky, was running loose in the 600 block of Heustis Street at around 5:30 p.m. Friday when it wandered into a yard where a birthday party was happening, Yorkville Deputy Police Chief Larry Hilt said. According to police, the dog was growling and showing its teeth. When the homeowner attempted to grab the dog's collar, the dog bit him on the forearm, Hilt said.
More Here

Followup MO: Police ID Man Shot in Self Defense by 70-Year-Old Taxi Driver

ST. LOUIS COUNTY - An investigation is underway after police say a taxi driver shot and killed a man in self-defense while driving on Interstate 70 early Sunday morning.

More Here

Wednesday, July 26, 2017

D.C. Court of Appeals Strikes Down "may issue" Concealed Carry Law

A three judge panel on the D.C. Court of Appeals has struck down the District of Columbia "may issue" concealed carry law. The District of Columbia bans the open carry of firearms. With its law banning the concealed carry of firearms except in exceptionally rare cases, it has effectively banned the carry of weapons outside the home. The three judge panel of the D.C. Court of Appeals ruled the law to be an unconstitutional infringement on the right to bear arms. From
D.C. requires gun owners to have a “good reason” to obtain a concealed carry permit.
The U.S. Court of Appeals for the D.C. Circuit struck down the regulation as too restrictive in a 2-1 decision, The Washington Post reported.
“The good-reason law is necessarily a total ban on most D.C. residents’ right to carry a gun in the face of ordinary self-defense needs,” Judge Thomas B. Griffith wrote, according to the paper.

“Bans on the ability of most citizens to exercise an enumerated right would have to flunk any judicial test.”
 From the decision:
Our first question is whether the Amendment’s “core” extends to publicly carrying guns for self-defense. The District argues that it does not, citing Heller I’s observation that “the need for defense of self, family, and property is most acute” in the home. Id. at 628. But the fact that the need for self-defense is most pressing in the home doesn’t mean that self-defense at home is the only right at the Amendment’s core. After all, the Amendment’s “core lawful purpose” is self-defense, id. at 630, and the need for that might arise beyond as well as within the home. Moreover, the Amendment’s text protects the right to “bear”as well as “keep”arms. For both reasons, it’s more natural to view the Amendment’s core as including a law-abiding citizen’s right to carry common firearms for self-defense beyond the home (subject again to relevant “longstanding” regulations like bans on carrying “in sensitive places”). Id. at 626.
This reading finds support in parts of Heller I that speak louder than the Court’s aside about where the need for guns is “most acute.” That remark appears when Heller I turns to the particular ban on possession at issue there. By then the Court has spent over fifty pages giving independent and seemingly equal treatments to the right to “keep” and to “bear,” first defining those “phrases” and then teasing out their implications. See id. at 570-628. In that long preliminary analysis, the Court elaborates that to “bear” means to “‘wear, bear, or carry . . . upon the person or in the clothing or in a pocket, for the purpose . . . of being armed and ready for offensive or defensive action in a case of conflict with another person.’” Id. at 584 (quoting Muscarello v. United States, 524 U.S. 125, 143 (1998) (Ginsburg, J., dissenting)). That definition shows that the Amendment’s core must span, in the Court’s own words, the “right to possess and carry weapons in case of confrontation.” Id. at 592 (emphasis added).
From the examples of Peruta in the Ninth Circuit, the Maryland ban on "assault weapons" in the Fourth Circuit, and the 11th Circuit decision to uphold the chilling of Second Amendment rights by doctors as agents of the government,  I expect the District of Columbia will ask for an en banc ruling from the entire D.C. appeals court.

(Following paragraphs edited for clarity)

It seems that any upholding of Second Amendment rights is appealed en banc, which is to say, to the entire court. An en banc appeal may not be granted in D.C. It requires a majority vote of the D.C. non-senior judges. The D.C. Court refused en banc appeals by the D.C. attorney general for two previous Second Amendment cases in recent years.

If the court refuses to grant the en banc request, or if the case is heard en banc, and if the D.C. circuit upholds the three judge panel, the case will be appealed to the Supreme Court.

Senate Democrats, lead by Harry Reid, used the "nuclear option" to stack the D.C. Court of appeals with President Obama's appointees exactly for such situations as this.  The Republicans recently returned the favor by using the "nuclear option" to confirm Supreme Court justice Gorsuch.

The Supreme Court has been reluctant to hear Second Amendment cases. The decision of the three judge panel on the D.C. Court of Appeals has made Wrenn a case that upholds the Second Amendment. Most of the previous cases denied by the Supreme Court upheld infringements on the right to bear arms.

©2017 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice is included.

Link to Gun Watch

Maryland "Assault Weapon" Ban Appealed to U.S. Supreme Court

The Fourth Circuit Court of Appeals upheld the ban on so called "Assault Weapons" (commonly owned semi-automatic rifles) and on standard capacity magazines that hold over 10 rounds of ammunition. The petitioners in that case, Stephen V. Kolbe v. Lawrence J. Hogan, JR., have decided to appeal the decision to the U.S. Supreme Court.

Such an appeal is called a writ of Certiorari.  Most appeals are rejected by the Supreme Court.

In the Fourth Circuit decision, the appeals court claimed that semi-automatic rifles and magazines with a capacity of more than 10 rounds, fell outside the protection of the Second Amendment.  This is directly contrary to the decision in U.S. v. Heller, though the Fourth Circuit claimed the opposite based on a fragment of a sentence in the Heller decision.

From the petition:
Maryland has banned the most popular semi-automatic rifles and magazines – arms that are indisputably in common use for self-defense – from the homes of its law-abiding citizens. According to the Fourth Circuit, it was “compelled by Heller to recognize that those weapons and magazines are not constitutionally protected,” App.49, and, therefore, to hold that these common, popular firearms fall outside the Second Amendment and can be banned from the home because they are “ ‘like’ ‘M-16 rifles’ and ‘most useful in military service.’ ” App.61. The Fourth Circuit’s decision misinterprets and conflicts with Heller and its progeny, as well as with the decisions of other Courts of Appeals, on a central question addressed in Heller: What arms are protected by the core right of the Second Amendment – the right of law-abiding citizens to keep arms in common use for self-defense in the home.

Heller struck down a prohibition on the firearms most commonly chosen for self-defense – handguns – even though handguns are arguably more “dangerous” than other firearms, and even though firearms other than handguns remained available for use in self-defense. This Court recognized and protected the principle at the heart of the interests enshrined by the Second Amendment: The individual – and not the government – retains the right to choose from among common arms those that they believe will best protect their person, family, and home. Id. at 629 (“Whatever the reason, handguns are the most popular weapon chosen by Americans for self-defense in the home, and a complete prohibition of their use is invalid.”).
This is an area of law the Supreme Court should address. Handguns are used in crime, murder, and even mass killings far more often than semi-automatic rifles are.  If handguns are protected by the Second Amendment, it would be absurd to conclude that semi-automatic rifles and standard capacity magazines are not.

Moreover, the Second Amendment has a clear military component. If one purpose of the Second Amendment is to be able to form effective militias, then the right to keep and bear effective militia weapons is protected.  Semi-automatic rifles are the epitome of a militia weapon.

In a case reviewed by the Supreme Court, but not addressed by the Fourth Circuit, the Supreme Court unanimously held, in the Caetano PER CURIAM decision (pdf), that:

The Court has held that “the Second Amendment extends, prima facie, to all instruments that constitute bearable arms, even those that were not in existence at the time of the founding,” District of Columbia v. Heller, 554 U. S. 570, 582 (2008), and that this “Second Amendment right is fully applicable to the States,” McDonald v.Chicago, 561 U. S. 742, 750 (2010).
Rifles, as a group, are arms that are least likely to be used in homicides. The Fourth Circuit cleverly avoided considering that fact by pre-emptively excluding those rifles from the protection of the Second Amendment. Because they excluded the rifles from Second Amendment protection, the Court avoided the requirement to apply strict scrutiny to the law.

The Supreme Court has been reluctant to hear Second Amendment cases. They recently refused to hear the Peruta case from the Ninth Circuit.

No one knows if the Court will grant the petition for a writ of certiorari in this case.

The reluctance to hear Second Amendment cases may change if President Trump appoints another Justice Gorsuch to the Court.

©2017 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

Gun Watch

OH: Gun Beats Hammer in Fight with Intruders

Police say two men broke into the home on Kenoak Lane just after 3 a.m.

That's when 24-year-old Gary Gross grabbed a hammer and confronted the two intruders that he says he's never seen before.After a brief struggle, Gross says he ran outside, grabbed a gun from his car, ran back inside and then shot both men who fled from the house and drove away.
More Here

Followup OK: No Charges for Armed Homeowner who Shot Teen Attempting Break-in

The 62-year-old caller said he was at home when he heard noises outside and armed himself with a 12-gauge shotgun as someone continued to try to enter the home. The man told investigators he opened his front door and fired at the teen when the he rushed at him with an object ― later identified as a framing hammer― in a threatening manner.

The teen, dressed in dark clothing, ran a short distance before collapsing in the driveway, where he died, investigators say. He was found with a backpack containing a sledgehammer and items from the Community Church at LeJean and Westminster.
More Here

NV: Abused Woman runs for Help, Neighbor Shoots, Kills, Pursueing Boyfriend

LAS VEGAS - The Clark County District Attorney will decide if a man will face charges in a late-night shooting death at an apartment complex near the Meadows Mall. Police said it appears the man was trying to protect a woman who was being beaten by her boyfriend.

Metro Police detectives said the shooter was not arrested and was cooperating with investigators.

Police were called to the apartment on Mission Laguna Lane around 10 p.m. Thursday night by a security guard who reported the shooting.
More Here

Followup IN: No Charges for Dean Keller in Self Defense Shooting

JOHNSON COUNTY, Ind. -- A man who was shot multiple times after brandishing a gun during an argument with his neighbor has been charged for his role in the shootout.

Jeffrey Weigle, 59 was shot four times in the chest by his neighbor, Dean Keller, last month. Weigle was hospitalized in critical condition.

The Johnson County Prosecutor's Office said Keller acted in self-defense and wouldn't be charged.
More Here

How to Shoot Kangaroos in Australia

Road Killed Eastern Grey Kangaroo near Quirindi in NSW, Australia

In Australia, there are few limitations on the hunting of non-native species. Rabbits, cats, feral dogs, feral horses, feral donkeys, feral pigs, feral goats, foxes, camels, wild cattle, and water buffalo can be taken with few regulatory limitations. Deer have some limitations on the calibers that may be used. Game can be shot with spotlights and from vehicles.

The shooting of Kangaroos, on the other hand, is highly regulated, and requires numerous different types of permits and licenses.  Kangaroos maintain high populations and are agricultural pests in large areas of Australia. In New South Wales, near Quirindi, road killed Eastern Grey Kangaroos are about as common as road killed deer in Wisconsin.

The shooting of kangaroos is regulated as to what position the animal must be in when shot (standing), where the animal may be shot (brain shots only), what calibers may be used (centerfire only, .204 Ruger and up), the range they may be shot at (less than 200 meters), and of course, who may shoot them (licensed commercial shooters and primary producers). Farmers are the most common primary producers. Commercial shooters need to apply for permits and numbered tags. Primary producers need to apply for a permit to shoot kangaroos that are damaging crops. Farmers are granted permission to shoot limited numbers of kangaroos. When the number is reached, they can apply for another permit.

Telescopic sights are required for rifles. Semi-automatic rifles may not be used. Some use of shotguns in special circumstances is allowed in South Australia. Rifles are required to be sighted on a non-animated target before each day's or night's hunting. Subsonic ammunition may not be used.

The regulations for shooting kangaroos commercially for meat and skins differ a little from shooting non-commercially for damage control and mitigation. There does not appear to be any allowance for shooting kangaroos by sport hunters.

In the United States, the regulations for most game vary considerably by state. In Australia, the regulations for kangaroo shooting varies a little bit by state, but is mostly controlled by  national codes of practice. The codes of practice were formulated by the Natural Resource Management Council.  All states follow the guidelines.

The United States has analogous regulation in the Federal requirements for hunting migratory birds.  Australians may think the U.S. steel shot limitations and multitudinous rules for hunting waterfowl to be as peculiar as the fine detail in the kangaroos shooting regulation seems to Americans. Australians likely think United States protection of feral horses and burros to be bizarre. Feral horses and burros are introduced species that do significant damage to the native ecology.

For most hunting other than for kangaroos, Australia is far less regulated than the United States.

©2017 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice is included.

Link to Gun Watch

Tuesday, July 25, 2017

AZ: Department of Transportation adds Armed Driver Guidelines

The Arizona Department of Transportation has added a section to its drivers manual suggesting the proper behavior for an armed driver, when stopped by police. The change was prompted by the tragic Philando Castile case.

From, the manual change was requested by Democratic state Representative Reginald Bolding, from District 27. District 27 is a solidly Democrat stronghold in South Phoenix. Bolding was elected in 2014 and re-elected in 2016. 

From , page 57 of the Drivers License Manuel :

Inform the officer of any weapons on
your person or in the vehicle.

In addition to the guidelines above, drivers
with firearms in the vehicle should keep
your hands on the steering wheel in a visible
location and when the officer approaches
let them know that you have a firearm in the
vehicle and where the firearm is located. If
requested, the officer may take possession
of the weapon, for safety reasons, until the
contact is complete.
Arizona law does not require that people carrying concealed weapons notify police, but it requires that people carrying a concealed deadly weapon answer truthfully if asked by police if they are carrying . If the officer does not ask, a person who is carrying a concealed weapon is not obligated to tell the officer they are armed.

From 13-3102:
A. A person commits misconduct involving weapons by knowingly:

1. Carrying a deadly weapon except a pocket knife concealed on his person or within his immediate control in or on a means of transportation:

(a) In the furtherance of a serious offense as defined in section 13-706, a violent crime as defined in section 13-901.03 or any other felony offense; or (b) When contacted by a law enforcement officer and failing to accurately answer the officer if the officer asks whether the person is carrying a concealed deadly weapon;
If the driver has a concealed carry permit, an alternative is to hand the officer the permit along with the driver's license. Then the officer will be responding to the positive information of "concealed carry permit holder", instead of "armed driver".

If you do not have a permit, use a positive phrase.  Many officers have been trained to react negatively to the word "gun".  Telling the officer that you are "legally armed" is better than saying "I have a gun".

The perception of concealed carry permit holders changed considerably in 1999 when  permit holder Rory Vertigan captured a cop killer with his legally carried Glock pistol. Police called Vertigan a hero and donated money for him to buy a new Glock while his was impounded as evidence. More recently, an armed citizen is credited with saving Arizona State Trooper, Edward Anderson.

There are numerous stories of people with concealed carry permits seeing a positive change in police attitudes when the police were informed the person stopped had a permit.

The acknowledgment in the DOT drivers manual that many drivers are legally armed is a sign of the normalization of armed citizens.

The tragic circumstances of the Philando Castile case will be cited for and against the advisability of notifying officers if you are armed. In some states, the notification is required by law. In others, it is conditional, depending on whether the officer asks or not. In other states, no notification is necessary.

Minnestota law is similar to that of Arizona. Castile was not required to notify the officer that he was armed until asked. The shooting of Castile might have been avoided if he had not volunteered that he was armed, or if he had kept his hands on the dash while waiting for the officers instructions.

©2017 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

Gun Watch

GA: Off Duty Detective, Shoots, Kills Hostile Trespasser

Hill stepped outside his home and confronted the man, later identified as Daniel Cash, according to authorities.

Police say Cash had erratic behavior and repeatedly confronted Hill in a hostile manner, despite being asked by Hill to leave his property.

Hill shot Cash after Cash advanced toward him, according to authorities.
More Here

KY: Armed Victim Shoots Suspect; Suspect Arrested 6 Months Later

LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WDRB) -- An alleged robber has been arrested months after police say he was shot in the chest by the man he was trying to rob.

According to an arrest warrant, it happened on Nov. 22, 2016. Police say a man called them to report that he'd just shot 19-year-old (now 20-year-old) Keith Dawson after Dawson tried to rob him.

Police say the victim told them Dawson walked up to him, pulled a handgun and demanded cash. At that point, the victim said, he gave Dawson $200, and Dawson pistol-whipped him.

The victim says he then pulled his own handgun and fired several shots at Dawson, hitting him in the chest.
More Here

MS: Domestic Defense: Estranged Wife Shoots Husband

The two were going through a divorce.

Clinton had been under a protection order that had expired July 11, just four days prior to the shooting.

"I’m sad that it happened that way, but it sounds like she protected herself," said neighbor Hilda Tucker.

The sheriff’s office said it appears Hamm feared for her life that Sunday night.
More Here

Australian Gun Culture (part 8): Quirindi Sporting Clay Target Club

On Sunday morning, July 23, 2017, Roy Eykamp, Jr. invited me to the Quirindi Sporting Clay Target club. The club is located 20 some kilometers out of town on a few acres of a former sheep farm, in New South Wales, Australia.

A small creek meanders through the property.  A combination of flat land for a club house and parking, with surrounding hills and mixed elevation gives an ideal location to configure challenging sporting clays competitions.

I fell in love with the atmosphere and the club from the start. The club house is a former shearing shed.  The exterior is sheet metal, the interior a finely crafted  wood pole framework constructed by hand with adze and saw, about a hundred years ago.

Members of the Club leadership gave me leave to take as many pictures as I wished. There was no hesitation. The club members were friendly, the atmosphere collegial. Everyone was there for a good time, and the feeling was contagious. I instantly felt at home. The gun culture transcends international boundaries.

Safety rules were followed scrupulously. I have seen the same at all gun clubs that I visited in America and in my travels.  Members of the gun culture are serious about following safety rules. Anyone who is not serious is not a member for very long.

This happens without legislation.  It is the same in Arizona as it is in New South Wales. It is caused by physics and human nature. Those in the gun culture know how guns work and what they can do. The requirements to prevent accidents transcend politics. People who join gun clubs are invariably some of the most responsible members of society.

Several dozen men and women participated in the planned event.  The course, as I recall, consisted of six stations, where four clay targets were presented to each participant at four stations, six at one, and three at a rabbit or ferret station to make a total of 25. The targets were highly varied and challenging.

It appeared to me an accomplished game shooter would be doing well to hit over half the targets.  Small groups of shooters went from one station to the next. I followed Roy Eykamp and his group around the course. 

Roy Eykamp breaks clay at Quirindi Gun Club
Dozens of club members on a Sunday, attending a sporting clays event, would be a good turnout at any comparable town in America. Quirindi has a population of a bit over 3,500.  The total in attendance likely exceeded 50.

Some Quirindi Club members queuing up at the first station

Almost all the shotguns I saw were over/under 12 gauge. I saw one single barrel shotgun. The license requirements for pump and semi-auto shotguns are very restrictive in Australia. To be fair, in America, pump shot guns are almost never seen at sporting clays events. They are legal, easily available, and very popular in America, but the rules of the game favor double barrel guns. In America, semi-autos have a small following for sporting clays. The Quirindi club in Australia allowed for their use, but a special class of license was required. People who registered for the event were required to give their shooting license number.

I was asked what I thought of the shooting prowess of the participants. It was exactly what I expected at a local gun club in America.

To most shooters, the camaraderie and social interaction are every bit as important as the final score. Shooters at clubs have earned each other's trust.

The setting was gorgeous, the participants friendly and polite, the weather perfect, the course challenging. It is hard to imagine a better gun club event.

The gun culture is alive and well in rural Australia. The people there have a great deal in common with those in rural America.

©2017 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

Gun Watch

Monday, July 24, 2017

UT: Armed Father Returns Fire at Teens Shootng Vehicle

Just after 8 p.m. Thursday, a car with an unknown number of teens inside began shooting at another vehicle near 900 N. Redwood Road, said Salt Lake police detective Greg Wilking. The other vehicle was occupied by a couple and their teenage son. The attack appeared to be at random, Wilking said.

All of the windows of the victim's vehicle were blown out as the teens fired several shotgun blasts, Wilking said. The father being shot at is a concealed weapons permit holder and returned fire with his own gun, shooting the other vehicle multiple times, Wilking said.
More Here

FL: Armed Pizza Hut Employee Shoots one of four Robbery Suspects

SARASOTA- Two armed masked men walk inside a Pizza Hut on 17th St. in Sarasota, hoping to rob the place but for one employee becoming a victim wasn’t an option.

Just before midnight, 22-year-old Alexsandr Gorislavets faced a life and death situation when 20–year–old Henry Morley and 21–year–old Shawnathan Young pointed a gun at him.

Gorislavets fired back with his legal to carry gun because he feared for his life.
More Here

TN: Elderly Man Shoots Robbery Suspect

NASHVILLE, Tenn. (WKRN) – Two men tried to rob an elderly man in Madison, but the victim fought back, pulled out a gun, and shot one of them.
More Here

IA: Man Disarms Kidnapping and Robbery Suspect, Shoots Same

The complaint goes on to say Hopkins ordered Deyo to log in to his computer and transfer a domain name to a third party, that's when Deyo grabbed the gun and a struggle began between the two.

During the altercation the gun went off shooting Deyo in the foot, according to the complaint, that's when Deyo grabbed the gun and shot Hopkins twice before calling police.
More Here

LA: Armed Elderly Homeowner Stops Home Invaders, Shoots, Kills one.

According to the Zachary Police Department, the shooting occurred in the 4000 block of McHugh Road when a group of people tried to break into an apartment. The suspect, Damon Hayes, Jr., 20, was shot and killed by a homeowner.
More Here

White House Petition for National Concealed Carry Reciprocity H.R. 38

President Trump promised to protect the Second Amendment and to push for national reciprocity for concealed carry permits.

The Virginia Citizens Defense League (VCDL) has created a petition urging President Donald Trump to push Congress to pass H.R. 38 and to send it to him for signature. H.R.38 creates national reciprocity for concealed carry.  The bill amends the federal criminal code to allow qualified people to carry concealed handguns in any state if they are qualified to do so in their state of residence.  Here is the summation from
This bill amends the federal criminal code to allow a qualified individual to carry a concealed handgun into or possess a concealed handgun in another state that allows individuals to carry concealed firearms.

A qualified individual must: (1) be eligible to possess, transport, or receive a firearm under federal law; (2) carry a valid photo identification document; and (3) carry a valid concealed carry permit issued by, or be eligible to carry a concealed firearm in, his or her state of residence.

Additionally, the bill specifies that a qualified individual who lawfully carries or possesses a concealed handgun in another state: (1) is not subject to the federal prohibition on possessing a firearm in a school zone, and (2) may carry or possess the concealed handgun in federally owned lands that are open to the public.
The passage of the bill would go far in keeping President Trump's campaign promises. It removes numerous existing infringements on the Second Amendment right to bear arms. Here is the wording of the petition. From
Mr. President, you have said many times that you would sign a national concealed carry reciprocity bill. Please urge Congress to pass H.R. 38 as soon as possible!

H.R. 38 will allow America's 17 million concealed handgun permit holders to carry in every state in the Union as they go about their lives. As the recent shooting in Alexandria shows, crime and terrorism have no borders. Neither should self-defense!

No other group is as law-abiding as concealed handgun permit holders, regardless of which state they are from.

Currently over 20 states, such as Virginia, North Carolina, and Arizona, already honor permits from all other states, without issue. H.R. 38 will simply make such recognition uniform across the nation and will save many innocent American lives!
The petition was started on 18 July, 2017, and has over 8,000 signatures so far. It has until 17 August, 2017 to accumulate 100,000 signatures or more.

Here is the link to the petition. It requires submission of an email address and personal information to be counted.

Congress has already passed such legislation for current and retired police officers. The courts have already enforced that law, known as LEOSA, The Law Enforcement Officer Safety Act. LEOSA has been steadily expanded by amendment and by court interpretation. H.R. 38 would be following established legal precedent.


Some people insist that all our Second Amendment rights be restored immediately. They say any partial restoration of rights is no victory at all. The infringements on Second Amendment rights did not happen all at once. They accumulated over time, starting with restrictions on concealed carry in the 1830's.

Incrementally restoring Second Amendment rights has been working. Fourteen states now have close approximations of Constitutional Carry. All states have methods for people to legal concealed carry weapons.  The methods include shall issue permits in 41 states. Vermont does not have a permit process because they have always been a Constitutional Carry state. The eight states that egregiously violate the right to bear arms (by allowing permits to be denied at discretion) face the prospect of a Supreme Court decision or a national reciprocity law, either of which will remove many of their infringements on the right to bear arms.

Fighting with a petition, a friendly President, and a friendly Congress, is far easier than fighting an unfriendly President commanding a military force with all the resources of the Federal government aligned against you. I have signed the petition.

Here is a link to the petition.

©2017 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

Gun Watch

Saturday, July 22, 2017

Truck Open Carry Case offers Chance to Validate Wisconsin Constitution

In Wisconsin, a truck driver, Guy A. Smith, is contesting an arrest for carrying a concealed weapon. The handgun was on the floor of his truck, and was visible to an outside camera. Smith made no attempt to hide the firearm when the truck was inspected by a Wisconsin State Trooper.

Open carry has always been legal in Wisconsin, but case law from 2003 found that carrying a loaded handgun concealed beneath a seat or in a glove compartment, was carrying concealed. The Supreme Court found the ruling to be correct, in spite of the passage of the strong protection for bearing arms in Wisconsin's Constitution.

In 1998, the people of Wisconsin voted for Constitutional Carry in a state referendum amending the state constitution. The amendment, which created Article I, Section 25, is very clear. It received 74% of the vote. From Article I Section 25:

 The people have the right to keep and bear arms for security, defense, hunting, recreation or any other lawful purpose.

The Wisconsin Supreme Court has been changed since 2003. Ideological leftists that dominated the court have been voted out. Originalists and textualists have been voted in.  Another case on carry in a car, which is carry for security, and other lawful purposes, such as self defense, could have a different outcome.

In a recent case on carry on buses, the court ruled that local governments may not ban the carry of weapons on buses. Unfortunately, the defense did not bring up the constitutionality of the city regulation.  Several justices appeared to be asking for a reason to consider the constitutionality issue, but the defense refused to raise it.

As part of the shall issue law passed in Wisconsin in 2011, the legislature changed the law on carry in vehicles. Carry in vehicles has several exceptions.

The issue is whether you can drive with a loaded handgun within reach, even without having a concealed carry permit.

Guy A. Smith, a 52-year-old commercial truck driver from Merrill, believes, as does a gun rights organization, that you can. That's why he said he made no effort to hide his revolver when inspectors entered his big rig at a weigh station in Pleasant Prairie in June.

Inspectors saw it on the floor of his cab via an overhead camera, then approached Smith and cited him for carrying a concealed weapon, a misdemeanor, and seized his gun.

Smith's case was set for a jury trial Monday, but the prosecutor seemed ambushed by the defense claim that a different Wisconsin law seems to specifically allow Smith's actions. The statute on transport of weapons says,
" ... no person may place, possess, or transport a firearm, bow, or crossbow in or on a vehicle, unless one of the following applies: 1. The firearm is unloaded or is a handgun."
At the time of passage, I thought the change was meant to apply to open carry. Several changes in the law clarified that open carry was legal, was not "disorderly conduct" and was a protected activity. It only made sense that open carry in a vehicle would be protected as well. Concealed carry was allowed for with a concealed carry permit.

Edit:  Assistant District Attorney Thomas Binger may appeal if he believes the Judge ruled incorrectly or if he believes incorrect procedure was used. Binger has already stated that he chooses not to read the law the way it was written. He says that would nullify Wisconsin's concealed carry law, Act 35. The Judge corrected Binger, saying it would only nullify the statute in cars.

I expect the jury to find Smith not guilty. If found guilty, I expect the defense to appeal.

Wisconsin Carry is funding the case. If the Constitutionality defense is included, the Supreme Court will have a chance to clarify that the Article 1, Section 25 of the Wisconsin Constitution, ratified by 74% of the voters, actually means what it says.

©2017 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

Gun Watch

Australia Gun Culture (part 7): Brucellosis a Risk for Pig Hunters and Pig Dogs in NSW

Feral Pigs in Australia
Feral pigs in Australia are a serious pest. They destroy habitat and native species, and inflict large amounts of damage on crops. They are a favorite target of local hunters who shoot them as often as they can.

Few people in the area near Quirindi (200 miles NW of Sydney), eat the wild pigs that are shot. I was puzzled by this, as meat prices are high, and the wild pork that I have eaten in California and Texas was excellent. One of the reasons for a lack of consumption is the feral pig population is a reservoir of brucellosis suis, which can be transmitted to dogs and humans.

 Gunnedah, NSW, is about 50 miles from Quirindi.  The veterinarian, Tina Clifton, is urging care by the Gunnedah community following two confirmed cases of Brucellosis in dogs in the area.  Brucellosis suis is the variety of Brucellocis found in pigs.

Link to Video

The Brucellosis suis (pig brucellocis) is not a threat to the area cattle. There is a feed lot within two miles of where I am writing that produces 55,000 head of cattle a year, with a capacity of 20,000 at a time.

Wild pig shot less than 200 meters from local farm house

Pig hunters use many different methods in NSW. Nothing seems outlawed, but the use of semi-auto firearms requires a special license. My hosts used to hunt wild pigs from a helicopter with semi-auto rifles, shooting as many as 120 a day.

Helicopter hunting now requires a special license for both the pilot and the shooter. The farm helicopter was sold years ago. Shooting at night with spotlights is common, as is the use of dogs. Non-firearms license holders can legally shoot pigs if accompanied by a licensed gun owner.

The NSW government gives helpful advise on how to avoid exposure to brucellosis. From

Feral pig hunting is the number one risk for catching brucellosis in NSW.
Farmers and others who shoot or trap feral pigs are also at high risk of infection.

Pig hunting dogs are also at high risk, and can potentially pass on the infection to other dogs and humans.

You can protect yourself, your family and dogs from brucellosis and other diseases that animals may carry by following these steps:

Farm dogs are at risk of brucellosis from wild pigs because they may find and feed on wild pig carcasses. In spite of the risks, cases of brucellosis appear to be rare. The finding of brucellosis in the two dogs mentioned above, was rare enough to make the news.

The feral pig problem in Australia is expected to become worse. From
Mr Wishart said feral pigs were appearing in other states where they weren’t before.

“They’re increasing in range and density. We’re now hearing about them in the north of South Australia and in central Victoria were they weren’t previously.”
Australian feral pigs are probably the easiest big game to hunt in Australia. They are numerous, and people hunt them at all times of the year. If you can make contact with people organizing a pig hunt, there is a good chance for an invitation.

 ©2017 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

Gun Watch

AL: Man Kills 820 lb Hog with .38 Revolver

Wade was afraid the huge hog would injure or kill the family pet so he grabbed a .38 caliber revolver that he keeps for home defense and went out on the front porch.

"By the time I got in a position to shoot, the hog was about 12 yards away," Wade said. "Cruiser was out of my line to the hog so I fired."

It took three shots to take him down. The giant hog hit the ground near the carport. The next day, Wade took the wild hog to Brooks Peanut Company and weighed it on the drive-thru scales. The hog tipped the scales at 820 pounds and had six inch tushes.

More Here

MO: Robbery Suspect Shot Dead by Victims

Kari Thompson with the Kansas City Police Department said the man who was killed was trying to rob a couple as they were unloading their car.

"These victims complied, however the suspect became more aggressive and attempted to get them to go into the residence," Thompson said. "At that time, one of the victims got their firearms, fired and fired upon the suspect."
More Here

PA: Homeowner Shoots Teen Criminal During Attempted Break-in

Police detained a 17-year-old boy who was shot in the leg late Monday after allegedly trying to break into a home along Clearvue Avenue in Duquesne, according to Allegheny County police Superintendent Coleman McDonough.

McDonough said the teenager fled the area in a car after being shot but drove it over an embankment. Police found him at his Commonwealth Avenue home, McDonough said.
More Here

Friday, July 21, 2017

Where We Disagree- the divergent opinions between gun owners and non-gun owners

Excellent essay by Rob Morse.  Good job, Rob.

Legal gun ownership is heavily regulated in the United States.  Protecting our rights is not necessary when we agree.  It becomes essential to protect a minority view, and gun owners are a minority here in the US.  Pew research conducted a series of interviews last month.  They released reports on the opinions of gun owners and non-gun owners.  Here are where gun owners and non-owners disagree based on recent polling data.

The urban/rural divide-

Gun-culture 2.0 is centered around self-defense rather than hunting.  That motivation has grown in recent years but there is still a large urban/rural divide in gun ownership and the attitude towards firearms.  Most rural households have a gun.  Urban households with a gun remain a minority. You’re almost twice as likely to live with a gun in your home if you live in the country as opposed to the city.  There are similarities.  A majority of gun owners in both settings have a loaded gun easily accessible.  

More Here

VA: Armed Citizens Assist Police in Capturing Carjacking Suspect

“ I jumped out of my truck with my pistol and yelled at the man to get down. He was yelling, ‘ I need help!’ I knew who he was, and I probably used some words you can’t print,” Morgan said. “ I just kept yelling, ‘ Get down on the ground!’” Morgan said he fired a shot into the ground both to scare the fugitive as well as let Warfield and Dulaney know there was trouble.

“ Out in the field, I had no idea what was happening up the hill.”

Dulaney, 48, was on the phone with the 911 dispatcher, relaying exactlywhat was happening. Warfield had grabbed his rifle and was sprinting toward Morgan, who had the suspect on the ground.

“ The guy looked desperate,” Morgan said. “ He looked like he was going totake a chance and run.”

The three men said they were stunned to see the fugitive make the decision torun. “ By then, we had two guns on him, and we could see he had no weapon,” said Warfield, noting the suspect was only wearing shorts, which were falling down, “ and he had nothing in hishands.” Warfield said, “ We did not want to shoot anyone, but when he ran, I knew we needed to protect our neighbors.”
More Here

WA: Teenage Girl uses Fathers Gun to Defend Self

Kimber's parents and boyfriend left for work and after seeing our story. Her boyfriend came across some deputies on his way to work and got more information from them. He then called Kimber to let her know what deputies told him. Kimber then called her dad and asked if she could grab one of his guns for protection. He said yes.

Kimber grabbed a gun, placed it under her pillow and went back to sleep. A short time later she says she woke up to the sound of someone coming into her house. She grabbed the gun and hid behind her makeup vanity. She soon found herself face to face with the man on the run from deputies.

Kimber pulled her gun out, pointed at the suspect and said, "Who are you?" and "Get the (expletive) out of my house!"

According to Kimber, the intruder's eyes got really wide and he ran out of the house. As he was running from the home, Kimber says she fired one shot into the ground.
More Here

CA: Fresno City Councilman uses Gun to Drive off Criminal

No mention is made if Councilman Chavez took his firearm with him while pursuening the criminal. If he did, he might have violated California law.

On Sunday, a day after returning from Mexico, Chavez was watching television at about 8 a.m. when he spotted a man peering through his front window who matched the description of the Wednesday burglar. “As I went to grab my gun, he goes to the house at the back of the property,” Chavez said. “I raised up the back window, pointed my gun at him and asked him, ‘What the (expletive) are you doing on my property?’ ”

Read more here:

More Here

AL: Church Member Shoots Armed Robber at Church, Killing Him

Although the church doors were open that morning, there were still worker there preparing for the upcoming week late into the night.

"They were getting ready to go on a youth trip and they were working late to get ready for the trip in the morning," said LT. Brian Smith.

Many may be wondering why this worker had a handgun on church grounds.

"In a church or not wherever you are you have the chance to defend yourself in your home you have certain additional rights," said LT. Brian Smith.

The second victim of the robbery fired a single shot into the upper torso of the suspect, who was 26-year-old Steffon Tolver.
More Here

TX: Victim Fires Back at Armed Robbery Suspect

Two men were sitting on a front porch when an armed man walked up and attempted to rob them, the statement said.

Police were not sure if the suspect was hit in the exchange of gunfire.

The victim was not seriously hurt, the statement said.
More Here

Thursday, July 20, 2017

Australia Gun Culture: The Feral Predator Problem

Australia has a feral predator problem. Feral dogs and dingo/feral mixtures kill large numbers of lambs and calves. They predate on native species. But as bad as feral dogs and dingo/feral mixes are, the top predator in most places is the feral cat. Exotic foxes, that were imported from England are considered pests.

Restrictions on gun ownership and hunting have made the feral predator problem worse.  The government could encourage people to carry rifles and shoot feral predators. Instead, the government puts out 1080 ejector capsules. When an animal pulls at the bait, the spring loaded ejector propels the poison capsule into the animals mouth. Death comes quickly. 

 Professional hunters also cull wild dogs. To hunt feral dogs, feral cats, or foxes on public land requires a restricted hunting license in New South Wales. It takes a bit more effort than a general license, but is available to those who take a test and belong to an approved hunting organization.

Tom Varney was a legendary wild dog hunter in Australia.

Link to video

Feral cats are extremely destructive to Australian wildlife. The ejector capsules do not work with them. Shooters are encouraged to reduce the feral cat population whenever possible. From
Threatened Species Commissioner Gregory Andrews said the cull, which goes until 2020, did not target domestic cats, nor was driven by bloodlust.

"They are the single biggest threat to our native animals, and have already directly driven into extinction 20 out of 30 mammals lost," he said.

"We are not culling cats for the sake of it, we are not doing so because we hate cats.

"We have got to make choices to save animals that we love, and who define us as a nation like the bilby, the warru (Black-footed rock-wallaby) and the night parrot."
Members of the Eykamp family told me that local hunters had some success in baiting and shooting feral cats.

Feral cats are said to kill up to a thousand native animals apiece each year.  One feral cat was confirmed to have killed 102 bats in one week.  Shooters who are helping to control feral cats in Australia say that the .22 rimfire can work, but more powerful calibers work better. From
Feral cats can be tough to eradicate so with a .22 rimfire close in shots are best and shots to the head or neck with high velocity .22 ammo are recommended. I have witnessed the Editor put a .22 LR High Velocity HP into the chest of a feral cat marauding around a warren from 30 metres and it ran away to be unrecoverable.

Depending on the size of property for the reason of safety, the .223 and other similar centrefire calibers will do a good humane job on feral cats. Also the fox whistle and predator type callers can help in attracting the feral cat and also glassing around rabbit warrens can be productive in finding them in the first place.
Natural selection seems to be favoring larger feral cats. From
“There’s no question there is a selection for bigger cats,” he said.

“The bigger a cat is, the more likely it is to survive in the wild and catch prey which means it is more likely to be successful at breeding.”

He said other factors such as the animals feral cats eat and their movements probably didn’t have as much of an impact.

“I think it’s got to be genetic,” he said.
A large feral cat in Gippsland was projected to be 170 cm long, or five and a half feet, long, including 60 cm or two feet, of tail. The record length for a domestic cat was claimed to be 121.9 cm.  The head of the Gippsland specimen was destroyed in the accident that killed the animal.

Foxes can be a problem for farmers, and are often shot in populated areas. They kill many native animals.

Exotic (non-native) foxes shot by a farmer in NSW, Australia.

Feral predators are a large problem in Australia. In America, before 1960, there were bounties placed on animals that caused problems.  Encouragement of widespread gun ownership and the hunting of pests can be part of the solution to feral and exotic pests in Australia.

©2017 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

Gun Watch

MI: Repo Man Shoots Pit Bull

DETROIT (WJBK) - A repo man said when he pulled up to repossess a vehicle in Detroit, he had no choice to but to shoot a family's dog that he says was ready to attack. But the owner of the dog says that's not true - from the back of a police car.
More Here

MI: Armed Witness Shoots Aggressive Window Breaker

The person was arguing with the driver and at some point allegedly pulled out an object and broke a window in the truck.

The driver of the truck drove off, and the suspect gave chase, still with the object in his hand.

At that point, police say a 23-year-old man who was in the area pulled a gun on the suspect and issued a warning: “don’t come any closer.”
More Here

CA: Rancho Cucamonga Homeowner Shoots Knifeman

RANCHO CUCAMONGA, Calif. (KABC) -- A Rancho Cucamonga homeowner shot and wounded a thief who advanced at him with a knife, the San Bernardino County Sheriff's Department said.

More Here

UT: Man Shoots Acquaintance who kept advancing

RIVERTON — A Riverton homeowner tried several times to get an intruder to stay away before resorting to shooting him, according to a search warrant affidavit filed in 3rd District Court.
More Here

Wednesday, July 19, 2017

SC: Victim Disarms Armed Robber, Shoots Same

Police say Bradley got into a fight with a 60-year-old man shortly after 2:00 a.m. Tuesday morning in the 5800 block of Koon Road in North Columbia. During the struggle, police say Bradley pointed a gun at the victim and then punched him in the head while demanding money. The two then struggled over the gun and the victim shot Bradley in the leg twice, according to police.

More Here

TN: Robber Shoots, Murders Man, Armed Witness Shoots Robber

It happened about 10:30 p.m. in the 1200 block of McLemore. Officers arrived to find two people shot. They say an 18-year-old suspect robbed and shot a 24-year-old man. Police say a witness then shot the 18-year-old suspect. The person who shot the suspect is not in custody.

More Here

MI: Gunfight, Homeowner Killed, one Invader Wounded

FLINT, MI - A pair of teenagers have been identified by Flint police as suspects in a home invasion early Tuesday morning on the city's east side that left a 63-year-old man dead.

Officers responded around 5 a.m. on Tuesday, July 11, to the 100 block of South Cumberland Street - off of Longway Boulevard - after a call to 911 in reference to a shooting in the area.

The incident started as a home invasion, but it soon turned into shots fired between the male homeowner and two teenage males, ages 17 and 18, police said. The homeowner was confirmed dead at the scene.
More Here

Followup CO: Domestic Involvement, Shooting of Acquaintance Justified

COLORADO SPRINGS, Colo. (KKTV) - A Colorado Springs man was justified in shooting and killing an acquaintance who had barged into his home and was charging at him as young children were just several feet away, the DA's office announced Tuesday.
More Here

IN: Homeowner Shoots Robbery Suspect

INDIANAPOLIS, Ind. – Police say a homeowner on the far east side of Indianapolis shot an attempted robbery suspect late Thursday night.

The shooting occurred in the 3200 block of Milford Road just before 11 p.m. IMPD officers tell us a man was returning home when another man attacked him.

More Here

Tuesday, July 18, 2017

Book Review: "Oh What Have I Done" 266 pages, Amazon

Roy Ekamp, 99 with Dean Weingarten (mustache and hat)
Oh What Have I Done, by Roy Eykamp, Amazon, paperback 266 pages $25, Kindle $9.99, Kindle text to speech enabled.

Roy Eykamp is 99 years old.  He made his first gun when he was seven years old. It was a crude pistol made from a barrel he salvaged from the trash, fired with a hand held hammer, and later, strong rubber bands cut from inner-tubes and a breechblock. 

He used it to start his lifelong talent for making money. He shot gophers with it, using .22 shorts. The government paid a 5 cent bounty for each gopher. He made enough money shooting gophers, that when his mother confiscated his homemade gun, he was able to buy a factory one with the proceeds, a Winchester single shot. It was likely a model 67, and cost $5.  With the Winchester, he was able to shoot jack rabbits, which had a bounty of 9 cents.

A picture of Roy when he was 16 shows him with upgraded armament. He is holding what appears to be a Springfield 86, a good bolt action .22 with tubular magazine.  I carried the sister rifle, model 84-C, with the detachable 5 shot magazine, for most of my youth.

Oh What Have I Done is the remarkable story of a life of invention, adventure, and achievement.  Roy Eykamp lived through the transformation of farming from horsepower to the giant agricultural machines of today. He was born in 1918, and is clear headed today.  His story is one that could be inspirational reading for every high school student. He shows how an innovative thinker and hard worker raised himself and his family by his bootstraps. In the process, he improved agriculture world wide. One of his patents became accepted practice, and is widely used today.

His early years show that firearms were integral and accepted tools in America a hundred years ago.  Roy became an exceptional shot who always thought outside the box. From shooting pheasants on the fly with a single-shot .22, to hunting Canadian wolves from an airplane, his shooting skills were highly honed and superior to most.

I do not recommend attempting to duplicate his feats today. Using .22 shorts like artillery shells to take out geese feeding on corn, out of sight and half a mile away, over a hill, is not something to encourage in today's crowded society. You have to read the story to see if you find it credible. I did.

The book is about more than shooting and guns. As you follow Roy's adventures, you learn how a keen eye for detail and a talent for invention lead Roy to successful production.  Then an inner voice took him to Australia, in 1963.

Thomas Jefferson wrote:
The greatest service which can be rendered any country is to add a useful plant to its culture.
Roy Eykamp accomplished that feat. He added Kikuyu grass to the useful plants available to Australian and world agriculture. Kikuyu originated in South Africa. Several people had tried to find a way to produce Kikuyu seed in an economical way.  All had failed. Roy, ignoring the experts, using his own observations and experiments, succeeded. He was able to find ways to grow Kikuyu and produce marketable seed. The Eykamps market Kikuyu seed all over the world. Kikuyu produces remarkable turf, and superior pasture land.

Roy and his family are primary producers who have significantly increased the productivity of world agriculture.  Their success has improved the lives of innumerable people.

His story is worth the reading.  I am privileged to have met him.

Oh What Have I Done is available on Kindle and in paperpack at

©2017 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

Gun Watch

OH: Husband Shoots Man who Attempted to Kidnap Wife

Police said a woman was coming from work, when she got out of her car, a man attempted to kidnap her. Police said she was able to get away, but the suspect threw a rock at the woman and her husband.

CPD said the husband fired a warning shot, but it was not enough to deter the suspect.

As the husband and wife were returning home, police said the suspect came back and the husband shot him.
More Here

OH: 3-Year-Old Alerts Father, Father Shoots Robbery Suspect

According to the 911 call released by the sheriff’s office, the woman who called 911 said the intruder shouted an obscenity and her husband shot him once in the chest. That intruder, later identified as 22-year-old Jacob Craft of Eaton, died the same night at Miami Valley Hospital.

When the 911 dispatcher asked about the intruder, the woman said, “I have no idea who he is. He had a mask tied over his face. His eyes were showing and he had a hat on…it was like a bandanna.”

Simpson has declined to say what kind or caliber handgun Craft or the husband had in their possession. The husband was alerted to the intruder by his 3-year-son, who had come into the home and alerted his father that “a robber’s here, daddy,” running toward the house.
More Here

FL: Man Shoot Uncontrolled Pit Bull

A man shot a pit bull mix that he said charged him in the front yard of a Palm Bay home Tuesday morning, police said.

The incident occurred just before 8 a.m. on the 2900 block of Wilkinson Ave. SE, and the dog was later put down.

The owner of the approximately 1-year-old dog, Squid, however, disputes that the dog posed any danger.
More Here

Followup PA: Bongiorni Found Innocent in Wilbert Shooting

Bongiorni, 69, facing the jury, nodded as he learned of the outcome and shook slightly. His daughter, Darlo Bongiorni, wept. Her phone call to her father for help when the intoxicated Wilbert arrived at her door prompted a confrontation between the two men in the middle of a street in the Bongiornis’ Burgettstown neighborhood.

A crowd of his supporters applauded James Bongiorni as he exited the courtroom, still escorted by sheriff’s deputies. Bongiorni had to briefly return to the county jail, where he has been an inmate during a yearlong stay.

Bongiorni, in testimony Friday, claimed he was justified in firing a single, fatal shot into Wilbert’s stomach during an episode that transpired in a Burgettstown street because Wilbert moved toward him with a Bowie knife, contradicting the assertions of other witnesses that Wilbert had no knife.
More Here

KY: Neighbor Shoots two Dogs of Pack that Killed 79-Year-Old

The video showed two of the dogs approached Tucker initially without problem.

When a third approached, however, all the dogs quickly became aggressive and Tucker fell to the ground, Correll said.

“It looked like it was very unprovoked,” he said of the attack.

A neighbor shot two of the dogs and police had to shoot a third, while the fourth ran off, Correll said.

More Here

Read more here:

Monday, July 17, 2017

MO: Gun Beats Box Cutter in St. Louis

ST. LOUIS, Mo. ( -

A man who attempted to steal a car on Thursday night is now in the hospital after being shot by the car's owner.

More Here

Sunday, July 16, 2017

Australia Gun Culture: Ownership Increases in NSW and Australia: part 6

Image from the The Northern Daily Leader

In the above chart, the numbers are unclear. Is it 14,542 registered guns, or licensed gun owners in Tamworth, NSW, Australia? Is the increase since 2010 in registered guns, or licensed gun owners?

The number of legal guns and likely, licensed gun owners, is increasing in Australia. It is difficult to know exactly how much it is increasing because statistics are not well kept. National statistics are uncertain because of differences in state systems.  From an article in from 2011:
Today, that national system is in a mess. No federal agencies or crime researchers were able to tell the ABC exactly how many registered guns or licensed shooters are in the country, and by how much gun numbers and gun owners were increasing.

The best estimate was 2.7 million registered guns, based on patchy figures supplied to Background Briefing.

The national police information service CrimTrac does have a national database, and it lists 4.3 million registered firearms. A CrimTrac spokesperson says it has no control over the data and was unable to say anything else about those 4.3 million guns.

For the past 15 years, gun homicide rates have been falling, but researchers fear because gun data is poorly kept and rarely shared, new crime trends involving guns are being missed.
It is clear that legal gun numbers have surpassed those that were in existence when the extraordinarily strict gun laws were imposed on Australia in 1996.

The registration and storage measures were rushed through the legislature in record time. The successful strategy was to pass them before any serious objection could be raised, during the emotional reaction to the Port Arthur massacre.

It is hard to reconcile the 2.7 million registered guns  said to be "The best estimate" with the CrimTrac police figure of 4.3 million registered firearms.

The number given for Tamworth, NSW is 14,542. The population of Tamworth in 2016 was estimated at 61,800. It makes a considerable difference if there is one registered gun for every 4 people, or one licensed gun owner.

In either case, legal gun ownership is on the rise. It may be due to unintended consequences created by the extremely strict penalties put in place in 1996.

For example, it takes weeks to be approved to purchase a new gun. The system requires an application to purchase. The approved application to purchase is good for 90 days, and generally costs a non-refundable $30.

If a licensed owner is considering purchasing a gun, and does not wish to make multiple trips to a gun store, they are likely to spend the $30 for a permit to purchase in advance, and carry it with them. Gasoline is $5 a gallon in Australia.

With the permit, if they see a rifle or shotgun that they like, they can purchase it on the spot. As the end of the 90 days approaches, the motivation to use the permit and not "lose" the $30 investment rises, increasing the likelihood of a purchase.

Similarly, a wife, son, brother, or sister, is not allowed to have access to a gun safe that their husband, brother or sister keeps their guns in. The motivation is strong (required by law) to have multiple gun safes to keep multiple guns for separate users.

I asked about the availability of used gun safes. I was told they were immediately snapped up when they became available. The Tamworth gun shop had multiple new gun safes available for sale.

How many legal gun owners are there in Australia? It appears that no one knows for certain. It could be anywhere from 1 million to 3 million. The total population of Australia is about 24 million.

The Shooters, Fishers, and Farmers party represents the interests of firearms owners in Australia. It is the only party dedicated fighting for shooters rights in Western democracies. It currently has three members of the NSW Parliament, two members of the Victoria Parliament, and one member of the Western Australia Parliament. National vote levels for the Shooters, Fishers and Farmers Party are about 3% of the totals. In Australia, all voters are required to vote by law.

©2017 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

Gun Watch

Australia: Man Fights Armed Robbers with Cricket Bat

In Australia, self defense is not considered a legal reason to own a gun. In the case below, the store owners had to resort to a Cricket bat to defend themselves and their property. The son ended in the hospital with multiple knife wounds.

The business was once again targeted just four days later when three men entered the store armed with a knife and an imitation gun on Wednesday night. They stole cash and alcohol before leaving on foot.

But this time, 29-year-old Lavi Arora confronted the alleged offenders with a cricket bat. Even as he received multiple stab wounds and was bleeding from his back, chest and stomach, he gave the robbers a chase with other staff. Two other staff at the store also received minor injuries as a result of the affray.

Lavi was hospitalised for treatment of his stab wounds.

Mr Arora says these were the same group of men who robbed his store last week.
More Here

Australian Gun Culture: .22 Ammo Prices

I visited Tamworth Firearms, in Tamworth Australia to check on the prices of .22 ammunition. There was a plentiful supply, and the prices for the Federal bulk pack of 525 was not too bad. At $42 for 525 rounds, it seems high, but the exchange rate is about 75 U.S. cents for an Australian dollar. Thus, $42 Australian translates to $31.50 American, including taxes.  That is 6 American cents per round.

Tamworth Firearms in Australia is laid out much like an American gun shop, except there are no pistols to be seen, and airguns are treated the same as firearms.

The .22 magnum cartridges were much higher priced.

At $23 Australian a box, that is 46 cents Australian per round, or 34.5 cents in American money.  At the Eycamp farm, officially known as Medway, I was shown a carton of .22 magnum ammunition with a price of $75 per 500 rounds. That is only 15 cents a round. Perhaps it was an old box, before the ammunition bubble, or when the exchange rate was more favorable to Australia.

The sales tax in Australia is figured into the prices that are displayed. In Arizona, the sales tax is added at the cash register, so that customers know how much tax is being added to the price. To be fair, the 7% sales tax in Arizona should be added to the Ammunition prices to compare them to the Australian prices. 

I visited the Cal Farms Store in Arizona shortly before I left for Australia. The Federal 525 value pack was on the shelf at $24.95. With the sales tax, the Federal .22 Long Rifle ammunition comes to $26.70 per 525 bulk pack, or 5.08 cents per round compared to 6 cents per round in Australia.  The .22 magnum CCI ammunition was listed at 29.98 cents per round in Arizona.  With the sales tax, that comes to 32.1 cents per round.  That is only a couple of pennies per round less than the magnum in Australia at Tamworth.

It appears that ammunition prices in Australia are close to those in the American market. Australia does not seem to have suffered from the bubble as much as shooters in the United States. It might be because the Australian shooters are just a small part of the overall market.

In general, prices are much higher in Australia than in the United States. Gasoline is above $5 U.S. dollars per gallon.  Food prices are higher. I paid $10 for a McDonalds 1/4 pounder meal with fries and a drink. No refills on the drink.
But for ammunition, at the current exchange rate, .22 prices are comparable.

©2017 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

Gun Watch

Saturday, July 15, 2017

Australian Gun Culture, Government Uses Iconic Dakota Arms as Amnesty Example part 5

I was seated in the Eykamp farm kitchen in NSW, Australia when Donald Eykamp stormed in and shoved a paper in my face. 
"Look at this!" He exclaimed. "That is a Dakota rifle! One of the most expensive production rifles in the world!  They cost $5,000 each. Look at the ebony fore end, the wrap around checkering, the grip cap, the classic peep sight, the short fore end, the inside the trigger guard magazine release, the Model 70 end of the receiver! Not one of these rifles have ever been used in a crime!"
I have two of them in South Dakota! I know what they look like!
Dakota Arms is one of the highest priced production rifles on the market.

The picture of the iconic Dakota Arms rifle is in an advertisement purchased by the Australian government for its ongoing firearms amnesty. During July, August, and September, the government will be allowing people to turn in firearms to the Australian government without arresting them for illegal gun possession.

Firearms that are unregistered, but which can be registered, will be allowed to be made legal.  So, an provisional mass murderer, who happens to have hidden away a $5,000 semi-custom version (the black ebony fore end is for an additional price), can now register this weapon of mass destruction after he has dug it up from its burial place. They can do this at a police station or at a gun shop.

Donald thought that the rifle in the picture was probably owned by a high up government official, when some picture of a gun was needed for the advertisement. My thought was that the owner of the advertising firm that the government contracted to do the ad might own it.

The advertisement could have been worse. They could have used a Holland and Holland double rifle in .470 Nitro Express.

I was at Tamworth the other day. If you look at the top article on the left of the picture, it mentions the problems they are having with flying foxes, which are large, fruit eating bats. They make a big mess, with bat scat landing on everything in sight. Donald says the townspeople hate them. There were thousands of them. I took a picture.

In the United States, those who push for a disarmed population, use pictures of "scary" AR 15 variants, or inexpensive pistols.

In Australia, they use $5,000 semi-custom hunting rifles used by elite hunters, all over the world. Those are the iconic types of guns that must be turned in to "make the community safer".

Most everything in Australia is a bit higher priced. Gasoline is $5 a gallon ($1.29 a liter).  The United States doesn't have to worry about flying foxes' scat.  We have pigeons and starlings.  If an American gun owner sees a Dakota rifle at a gun turn in, he will offer cash for it. In most American states, it would be legal for him to buy it, without government permission.

©2017 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

Gun Watch

NC: Woman Shoots Man Attempting to Enter her Home

Deputies said a woman at 320 S. Plank Road grabbed her pistol after hearing somebody jiggling her door knob just before 11 a.m.

When the woman answered the door, Bryant Latrelle Martin, 29, of 281 S. Plank Road, attempted to force his way into the house and got into a struggle with the homeowner, authorities said. The woman told deputies that she fired several shots at Martin, who ran from the front porch.

More Here

OH: Armed Victim Shoots Robbery Suspect

COLUMBUS (WCMH) — Columbus police are investigating a shooting that sent a robbery suspect to the hospital.

According to the Columbus Division of Police, at about 7:22am, Thursday, officers were called to the 6000 block of Barbour Ridge Drive on the report of a shooting.

Police say during a robbery attempt, the victim shot the suspect.
More Here

Friday, July 14, 2017

Australian Gun Culture: "Safe Storage" and Registration: Part 4

Donald Eykamp working in Farm Shop
The Australian gun law requires two things that are often cited as "common sense" by those without an understanding of everyday gun use. They are universal gun registration and "safe storage".  Both have been weaponized against gun owners in Australia. They are an object lesson of what to avoid for those fighting for the right to arms in America and elsewhere.

Registration does nothing to prevent crime. Both New Zealand and Canada had extensive gun registration schemes similar to Australia's. Both concluded that gun registration is costly and not effective in preventing crime. Both repealed their gun registration schemes in favor of gun owner registration systems.

In the Canadian and New Zealand systems, once a gun owner is cleared to own guns, they can own guns without a problem. Guns can easily be transferred among legal gun owners and gun shops.

Pistols are restricted much more than long guns in all three countries.

In Canada, pistols have been registered for 80 years. In that period, there was only one ambiguous case where registration might have helped solve a crime.

In Australia, the registration system is dangerous and cumbersome for the gun owner. Only the person who registered the gun may use the gun. An exception is made for people who are in the presence of the gun owner.

A gun may be borrowed or loaned to another person for a hunting trip or for vermin control, or simply to try out, if the person the gun is loaned to has the proper license for that category of guns. If the gun is to be transferred for more than 14 days, the police have to be notified of the new "safe storage" location.

Only the gun owner is allowed to have access to the metal safe the gun owner is required to store the guns in.

Donald Eykamp, above, was diagnosed with cancer shortly after his guns were impounded. He beat the odds after a long hospital stay, extreme radiation treatments, and borderline chemotherapy. It is difficult and dangerous for him to walk. Falling could be fatal. He tires easily.

If he had his guns, they would have to be locked up except when he was using them. If he saw a wild pig rooting in the crops, he could not have his assistant get a rifle for him.  If the safe were left open, it would be in violation of the law.  Most of the charges against him are for "unsafe storage" because he briefly left two of his safes open, while living alone at his farm.

Another person is not allowed the combination to a safe or access to a key; that would be a violation.  If the other person were a licensed gun owner, it may be permissible for a person with the same level of license as the gun owner. A husband cannot allow his wife the combination to his gun safe.

Only licensed firearms dealers are allowed to manufacture, repair, or alter firearms or firearms parts.

It is seductive in Australia to circumvent the irrational law. That lays legal traps for the gun owner that can have severe consequences.

Australian Farm Gun Safes
In Donald Eykamp's case, $150,000 of his guns are still in police custody while the case is appealed.  18 highly valued rifles and shotguns were in a locked safe when he was raided. Those guns were allowed to be stored with a gun shop after Donald's fines were paid, by order of the court. The gun shops are legally liable for guns stored by owners, and charge a fee for storage.

The minimum fee offered Donald for storage was $35 per gun per week.  Donald's case has been ongoing for over 100 weeks. That would be storage fees of $3500 per gun!  Some of Donald's guns are worth more than that. Donald's case will set precedent.

Few Australians contest a case involving gun storage. The value of the guns would quickly be eroded. The guns have to stay in storage until a transfer is approved. Guns are tied to a single person when registered to them. They may be stored by another registered gun owner, if the other owner has the same level of license. If the storage is for more than 14 days, the police must be notified.

In Donald's case, his long relationship with a custom gunsmith allowed for a negotiated solution. Donald purchased a $900 gun safe for the legal storage of his guns in the gun smith's shop.  When the guns are gone from the shop, the safe will become the property of the gunsmith. As of this date, Donald's guns are still being transferred from that safe.

In Australia, the combination of universal registry of legal guns and the extreme "safe storage" law puts gun owners at legal risk. The interpretation of the law varies widely with individual law enforcement officers.  It is a prescription for the disaster that happened to Donald Eykamp.  The case is under appeal.  The results are expected in the next few weeks.

©2017 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

Gun Watch