Thursday, June 20, 2024

FL: Governor DeDantis Recieves Bill to Restore the Ability to Shoot Bears in Defense of People, Pets, and Dwellings

Image from Winter Springs, Florida, Police Department

 

On  June 7, 2021, Florida Governor DeSantis received HB0087 along with 24 other bills. Because the bill was sent after the Florida legislature had adjourned for the session, Governor DeSantis has 15 days to sign the bill, allow the bill to become law, or to veto the bill. From the flseanate.gov:

The Florida legislature overwhelmingly voted for HB0087 on March 8, 2024. The bill is titled Taking of Bears. It restores the ability of people in Florida to protect themselves, their pets and their dwellings from black bears, without having to ask permission of the Florida state bureaucracy first. The legal ability to defend pets and dwellings from bears was stripped away in a regulation created by Florida Fish & Wildlife Commission (FWC)in 2012. 68A-4.009 Florida Black Bear Conservation:

  1. No person shall take, possess, injure, shoot, collect, or sell black bears or their parts or to attempt to engage in such conduct except as authorized by Commission rule or by permit from the Commission.

The Florida legislature was not involved. No elected official voted on this major change in the law. Because law abiding citizens with property and assets to lose try to follow the law, the effect of this regulation was to cast doubt on the ability of people to defend even themselves and others from bears, without first obtaining permission from the Florida Fish & Wildlife Commission. Even when black bears were invading homes and destroying property, residents were worried that shooting the bear might result in adverse legal consequences.

This is a reversal of traditional law which was in effect until 2012. If a bear was destroying property or killing livestock, the bear could be stopped with lethal force. The 2012 regulation requires the owner of the livestock or property to contact the Fish & Wildlife Commission first, then attempt to stop the depredations with non-lethal means. If this fails, then the Fish and Wildlife Commission may issue a depredation permit.

HB007 is a partial restoration to the law which existed before the power grab by the FWC in 2012. It restores the ability of people to use lethal force against bears who are a threat to their persons, pets or dwellings. To protect livestock and other property, people are still required to obtain a depredation permit from the FWC. If a bear is taken in defense of persons, pets or dwellings, the take has to be reported to the FWC within 24 hours. The person who takes the bear is not allowed to keep any part of the bear. The law is set to take effect on July 1, 2024.

The Florida bear population is skyrocketing. Black bears in Florida are not in any danger of extinction. Black bears were removed from the State Threatened Species list by the FWC. The last time the bear population was estimated was in 2016, at about 4,350 bears. Estimating from natural increase in other states, the population is likely over 7,000 today. Another study to estimate the current population is supposed to be ongoing. As the bear population increases, problem bears invade suburbs and cities. Because they are overprotected, they lose their fear of humans. Some of those bears become problem bears and need to be removed from the population.

HB0087 allows people to remove the problem bears as they are being problems. The number of illegal kills of bears is so small, the FWC cannot measure it. The number of bears taken under HB0087 will probably be less than 30 a year. About 300 bears are killed in vehicle accidents each year in Florida. Hundreds of bear cubs are killed and eaten by adult male bears in Florida each year. Most problem bears are male bears.

There is no official record of a black bear killing a person in Florida. There were 37 bear-human conflicts in Florida from 2006 to 2022, where the bear made physical contact with a human. The first human killed by a black bear in California happened with a rising bear population last November. The California Department of Fish & Wildlife is reluctant to issue depredation permits.

Analysis: HB0087 is a commonsense measure to restore the ability of people in Florida to defend themselves, their pets, and their dwellings from problem black bears. It is expected Governor DeSantis will sign the bill.

 

©2024 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

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TX: Burglary Suspect Shot, Wounded in Confrontation with Homeowner

 SHERMAN, Texas — Around 5 p.m., on Monday, June 17, 2024,

 Sherman Police Department officers were dispatched to the 1300 block of E Ida Road in response to a shooting.

The homeowner reported finding an adult male burglarizing his shed. When confronted, the suspect allegedly charged at the homeowner with an object. The homeowner then discharged his firearm, striking the suspect in the hand. 
 
Officers located the suspect and transported him to a local hospital for non-life-threatening injuries. He is expected to recover.


More Here

TX: Longview Man Flees Hit & Run, Breaks into Home, is Shot, Killed

A Longview man was shot and killed early Sunday after he broke into a home after fleeing the scene of a wreck, Longview police said.

Johan Nino, 23, was shot by a resident in the 3600 block of Clemens Road, Longview police said Monday on Facebook.

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Wednesday, June 19, 2024

CA: Woman Killed by Black Bear in her Home; F&W was in Denial



Link to youtube video


On November 8, 2023, the Sierra County Sheriff deputies performed a welfare check on 71 year old Patrice Miller at her home in Downieville, California. At the house rented by Miller, they found a gruesome scene. The door had been broken in. There was bear scat on the porch. What was left of Miller's body was inside. The bear had been feeding on it for several days. California has a rapidly growing bear population and rapidly increasing numbers of bear-human conflicts.

Downieville is a small village at the confluence of the Yuba and North Downie rivers, 54 miles west of Reno, Nevada, at a few feet less than  3,000 foot elevation. It is home to about 325 people. It was founded during the gold rush in the 1850's, and had a population of over 5,000 population  at its peak. It is wild country, with the town making most of its income from tourism.

Downieville is the county seat for Sierra County. The Sierra County Sheriff is Mike Fisher. Patrice Miller's home was a short walk from Sheriff Fisher's office.  Once Sheriff Fisher determined a bear had been feeding on a human body, He asked the California Department of Fish and Wildlife (CDFW) to issue a depredation permit so the bear could be legally trapped. CDFW refused to issue a permit. They said the request had to come from the house's resident.  From the mountainmessinger.org:

CDFW told Fisher that the depredation permit had to be requested by the house’s resident despite the fact that the resident was deceased and that the Sheriff’s Office could not make a request on its own. The homeowner eventually was able to issue a request, after which the permit was issued, and the U.S. Department of Agriculture trapper was called.

Early in the investigation the bear was assumed to have found Patrice dead and had simply started to consume her body.  The Sierra County Coroner thought such was the case. The report by the Placer County pathologist stated Miller had been killed by the bear with a bite to the neck. 20 years earlier, Patrice Miller had multiple organ failures and had not been expected to live.  

Patrice Miller's daughter reported her mother was having constant problems with bears who were attempting to break into her home. From latimes.com

Miller’s daughter told officials that “bears were constantly trying to get in through broken windows and that her mother had physically hit one to keep it from entering her residence.” Her mother even nicknamed one of the bears that was a “frequent visitor to the residence, and a nuisance,” according to a Sheriff’s Office report.

Sheriff Fisher said he had not been made aware of a bear problem at Patrice Miller's residence.  CDFW stated this was the first documented case of a fatal black bear attack in the history of California.

Within two days of the trap being set for the bear, a bear was caught. The authorities knew the offending bear was a male.  A female CDFW biologist claimed the trapped bear appeared to be female, and should be released. Sheriff Fisher refused to do so, impounded the trap and bear, and insisted the bear be tranquilized so its sex could be determined.  After about 10 hours, and a threat by Sheriff Fisher to call KCRA 3 to document the release of the bear, CDFW tranquilized the bear. It was determined to be a boar (male) and the Sheriff had it euthanized. Several months later, the CDFW released DNA results confirming the bear which had been trapped and killed was the offending bear.

 Man eating bear trapped in Downiesville image by Sierra County Sheriff's Office

A CDFW  departmental bulletin states a decision to kill bears involved in bear-human conflicts may only be made by the Regional Manager (RM) or Response Guidance Team (RGT).

In Conflict Bear incidents where management options have been exhausted, the decision to  remove the bear from the population (i.e., lethally taken, relocated, or captured for long term captivity), may only be made by the RM or RGT.  

Sheriff Fisher reports there has been a change in policy by the CDFW. Before 2022, game wardens in the field could issue depredation permits when necessary. According to the draft bear plan (figure 6 on page 33) about 65 black bears were killed under authority of the permits in 2021. Only 30 were killed in 2022.


California bear depredation permits and kills 2017-2022. 

The number of bears killed is decreasing significantly while the number of bears and bear-human conflicts is growing rapidly.

Bear human conflicts as reported in the draft bear plan. 

As long as the California bureaucracy places emphasis on protecting bears at the expense of human treasure and property rights, the conflicts will continue to rise.

If a bear attempts to enter your home in California, you may shoot it to prevent it from entering. In California, firearms which are not grandfathered in your possession are supposed to be registered. Ammunition purchases are supposed to be registered. You have to take a class to purchase a gun, and wait about two weeks to take possession. With the legal complexity, it may be understandable why Patrice Miller did not have a gun to shoot a bear which was breaking into her home.

©2024 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

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FL: Gunfight after Bar Fight, Both Wounded

The driver of the other vehicle was struck in the leg or foot area.

Pearson said all parties involved have been identified. The case remains under investigation. 

“We haven't had a chance to talk to the individual who's in intensive care at this time, but I'm sure once we talk to them, we'll be able to shed more light onto it,” he said. “Based on the information that the driver left and the motorcycle caught up to him, there's the potential for this being a stand your ground case.”

More Here

Massachusetts Courts ruling against Power of Police Chiefs to Deny the Second Amendment

 

 

There have been at least two cases where local judges in Massachusettes have held the license to carry law, which was passed in defiance of the Supreme Court Bruen decision, is unconstitutional under the Second Amendment. On May 14, 2024,  Judge Kevin J. Finnerty granted a petition against the denial of a Firearm Identification Card (FID). Without an FID, the License to Carry is suspended. On May 20, 2024, Judge William P. Hadley ordered Police Chief David Pratt to issue a License to Carry to Randy Westbrook. The two cases are discussed in Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly:

Smith noted that Fall River District Court Judge Kevin J. Finnerty issued a similar ruling on May 14 in Echeverre v. Cullena case initially seeking judicial review of the denial of a firearm identification card, or FID, and subsequently involving the suspension of an LTC.

In granting the petition, Finnerty said he agreed that “discretionary suspension (or grant) of a constitutionally guaranteed right to which our jurisprudence requires courts to defer is inconsistent with ․ Bruin holding.”

The Westbrook case of denial of an LTC by Hollyoak Police Chief David Pratt:

In his appeal from the denial of the application, the petitioner argued that G.L.c. 140, §131, runs afoul of New York State Rifle & Pistol Association v. Bruen and other recent U.S. Supreme Court decisions interpreting the Second Amendment’s right to bear arms. Specifically, Westbrook contended that the “suitability” standard set forth in §131 for a police chief’s assessment of dangerousness is unconstitutionally vague and overbroad.

Judge William P. Hadley agreed, reversing Chief Pratt’s permit denial and ordering issuance of an LTC to Westbrook.

These cases are at the district court level. Other courts are not required to follow their lead. It is unclear if either or both of the cases will be appealed. Other courts are required to respect the precedent of the Bruen decision. The logic of the Echeverre and Westbrook cases is obvious and clear.  The Massachusetts legislature created a substitute subjective standard of "dangerousnes" as a means to avoid following the clear guidance of the Bruen case, set forth by the Supreme Court of the United States.

The Massachusetts Lawyers Weekly points out police chiefs do not want to relinquish their power to deny License to Carry permits. The Massachusetts legislature desires to insure the police chiefs have to power to deny License to Carry permits. The Second Amendment of the Constitution directly forbids the power of government agents to subjectively deny people the right to keep (possess) and bear (carry) arms, which includes handguns.

Massachusetts is already in the radar of the Supreme Court. After the Bruen decision, the Supreme Court of the United States vacated the Morin , Alfred V. Lyver, William, et al, case and sent it back to the Court of Appeals for the First Circuit to be re-considered under the clear guidance of the Bruen decision. Morin was issued a License to Carry as a result.

Some judges in Massachusetts understand their duty under the Constitution to enforce the limitations on government imposed by the Bill of Rights. Massachusetts residents whose rights to bear arms have been infringed by their local police chief now have two well reasoned cases to use as examples for their own challenges.

©2024 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

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Monday, June 17, 2024

Research Confirms: Men who have More Guns have greater Sexual Satisfaction

 

Recent research shows a significant correlation between the possession of guns and a man's satisfaction with his sexual equipment.

A common fantasy thrown at male gun owners is they are using guns as "compensation" for an undersized penis or sexual disfunction. This speculation has long been a staple of those seeking to discredit the ownership of firearms. This earlier paper gives an overview of the psychosexual insult and its use.

In 2016, an editorial in HuffPost argued that “the compulsion to own firearms stems from an unconscious need to compensate for a deep-seated psychological sense of insecurity and inadequacy in terms of power: in males, specifically for having a small or smaller-than-desired penis” (). In 2020, John Cleese, a famous comedian, quipped on Twitter that “the British are proud that they DON’T [emphasis in original] need a gun to make themselves feel manly” and that Americans need “assault weapons” to “keep ED [erectile dysfunction] away” ().

In the recent paper, researchers decided to test the theory with actual data. The collection of the data was funded by a group which desires to disarm the American population. From newatlas.com:

The researchers disclosed that data collection for the study was financially supported by the organization Change the Ref, whose mission is “Shifting America’s social response to gun violence by uniting creativity, activism, disruption, and education.” The researchers state that although Change the Ref has a clear anti-gun stance, it played no role in the planning or implementation of the study.

The study was published in the American Journal of Men’s Health.

The results of the study were precisely opposite of the psychosexual insult thrown at male gun owners. The more male gun owners were satisfied with their penis size, the more they were likely to own guns, to own more guns, and to own "military style" rifles. Here is the abstract from the study, bold added. From pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov

Abstract

In this study, we formally examine the association between penis size dissatisfaction and gun ownership in America. The primary hypothesis, derived from the psychosexual theory of gun ownership, asserts that men who are more dissatisfied with the size of their penises will be more likely to personally own guns. To test this hypothesis, we used data collected from the 2023 Masculinity, Sexual Health, and Politics (MSHAP) survey, a national probability sample of 1,840 men, and regression analyses to model personal gun ownership as a function of penis size dissatisfaction, experiences with penis enlargement, social desirability, masculinity, body mass, mental health, and a range of sociodemographic characteristics. We find that men who are more dissatisfied with the size of their penises are less likely to personally own guns across outcomes, including any gun ownership, military-style rifle ownership, and total number of guns owned. The inverse association between penis size dissatisfaction and gun ownership is linear; however, the association is weakest among men ages 60 and older. With these findings in mind, we failed to observe any differences in personal gun ownership between men who have and have not attempted penis enlargement. To our knowledge, this is the first study to formally examine the association between penis size and personal gun ownership in America. Our findings fail to support the psychosexual theory of gun ownership. Alternative theories are posited for the apparent inverse association between penis size dissatisfaction and personal gun ownership, including higher levels of testosterone and constructionist explanations.

Another fantasy of those who want to control your access to defensive tools has been exposed. The arguments of those who want to prevent people from owning and using guns are fantasy arguments which do not hold up under examination. More guns do not cause more crime. More guns do not cause more suicides. Concealed Carry permit holders are more law abiding than police.

 

©2024 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

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IL: Chicago Disarm Attempt Fails Victim Shot in Hand

Yet another robbery victim was shot Thursday night on the Far North Side. A 24-year-old man and his 28-year-old girlfriend were walking in the 7200 block of North Ridge when the robber confronted them around 9:04 p.m. Chicago police said the male victim tried to get ahold of the offender’s firearm, but it discharged, striking him in the hand. After getting wallets from the two victims, the robber fled.


More Here

Sunday, June 16, 2024

Newsom’s Proposed Anti-Second Amendment Receives No Support

Governor Newsom, 2019, wikimedia commons

 

On June 8, 2023,  a year ago, Gavin Newsom, Governor of California, and continuous supporter of ever more laws restricting gun ownership and use, proposed an Article V convention of the states for the purpose of amending the Constitution. The amendment would allow for more restrictions on who may own firearms and what type they are allowed to own. Since the convention and amendment were proposed, no other state has passed a resolution to support Governor Newsom's effort.

The initial proposition did not propose language for the Article V convention.  It listed several possible restrictions without statutory language. Resolution 7 was passed on September 21 in the California legislature. After a long list of dubious assumptions, the effective wording of proposed restrictions is as follows:

(a) Affirm that federal, state, and local governments may adopt public safety regulations limiting aspects of firearms acquisition, possession, public carry, and use by individuals, and that such regulations are consistent with the Second Amendment to the United States Constitution and the understanding that throughout American history private individuals have possessed firearms for home defense, hunting, and recreational purposes;
(b) Impose, as a matter of national policy, the following firearms regulations and prohibitions: (1) universal background checks as a prerequisite to purchase or acquisition of a firearm, (2) a prohibition on sales, loans, or other transfers of firearms to those under 21 years of age, subject to limited exceptions, (3) a minimum waiting period after the purchase or acquisition of a firearm before that firearm may be delivered to the buyer or acquirer, and (4) a prohibition on the private possession of assault weapons and other weapons of war; and be it further

There is no mention of the balance of power purpose for potential overthrow of a tyrannical government. Many observers suspect Governor Newsom put out the initiative to keep his name in the news as a possible replacement for President Biden, if President Biden pulls out of the 2024 presidential race during the last five months before the election.

Governor Newsom claims the restrictions on firearms ownership and the types of firearms allowed are popular among the electorate. It is hard to see how 2/3 of the states would desire to engage in such a risky political enterprise as an Article V convention, when the proposal is devoted to eviscerating the Second Amendment.  The proposed amendment would do so by specifically granting power to all levels of government to limit the sale, possession, carry, and use by individuals. The Second Amendment would be a dead letter in the law.

Roughly 60% of states are controlled by conservative legislatures and voters. It seems unlikely the necessary two thirds of state legislatures would sign up. In the last year, the only state to support Newsom's measure is California, where he, as Governor, has significant political clout.

An Article V convention is feared by both conservatives and far left activists. No one knows if such a convention would be bound to the terms of its charter.  Obtaining the approval of three quarters of state legislatures or state conventions to approve the results of an Article V convention  appears to be a near impossible task in today's contentious political climate.

©2024 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

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LA: Shreveport, Gunfire leads to Arrest of Suspect

The suspect had called his parents to come get him while he was on the run, having assumed he was shot.

“The owner took shots at the suspect. He ended up calling his mom to come get him so we ended up chasing him for miles,” said Lt. Shawn Hurd with SPD.

SPD chased the man for hours before finding him hiding inside an unaware neighbor’s dryer.

“I was in there reading my Bible and seen these police come up the driveway and went in the back,” said James Wall, the man whose dryer the suspect was found hiding inside. “We have some problems like this every once and a while, but none like this. It was like the whole police force showed up.”

 

More Here

Saturday, June 15, 2024

WI: Lawsuit Filed Against DNR for Unconstituitonal Rule on Firearms Possession


On June 6, 2024, the Wisconsin Institute for Law & Liberty filed a lawsuit against Steven Little in his official capacity as Acting Secretary of the Wisconsin Department of Natural Resources (DNR), demanding the Court temporarily and permanently enjoin enforcement of Wis. Admin. Code § NR 20.05(2).

Wis. Admin. Code § NR 20.05(2): “No person may...[p]ossess or control any firearm, gun or similar device at any time while on the waters, banks or shores that might be used for the purpose of fishing.”

The DNR regulation bans possession of firearms in a wide variety of locations and activities. It is in direct violation of the Second Amendment of the Constitution of the United States. Virtually any firearm "might be used for the purpose of fishing".  The lawsuit does not  claim a violation of the Wisconsin Section 25, although the regulation appears to violate Section 25 as well. Section 25:

 The people have the right to keep and bear arms for security, defense, hunting,
recreation, or any other lawful purpose. (Art. 1, § 25)

A far-left Wisconsin Supreme Court essentially nullified Section 25 in State v Hamden in 2003. The Wisconsin Supreme Court is currently back under the control of far-left judges, because of the election of 2022. This may explain the strategy of citing the U.S. Second Amendment, but not Section 25 of the Wisconsin Constitution.

The DNR regulation was created in 1999, during a rewrite of the regulations. It was claimed the re-write contained only "minor substantial changes". The ban on firearms in wide areas of the state was administratively created within a year of the passage of the Constitutional amendment, Section 25, which was passed in 1998.

In the history of fishing in Wisconsin, it was common to keep a "kit gun" in a tackle box as a means of subduing large fish as they were played out and brought close to the angler on a boat. My father often kept a Remington Rolling Block single shot .22 pistol for such a purpose. I possess that pistol today. In 1965 a campaign was started to demonize using pistols to dispatch large fish, particularly muskies, in Wisconsin. In 1966, the Wisconsin Conservation Commission created a rule making it illegal to use a firearm to shoot fish.  In 1999 the change was made as shown in the second paragraph. It was an enormously substantive change.

Instead of prohibiting the shooting of fish, the rule prohibited the possession of all firearms at anytime, over vast areas of Wisconsin. I have unknowingly violated the rule thousands of times over the intervening decades. A person cannot travel by boat or canoe, hunt along a river or lake, or hike on a lake shoreline or river bank, or cross a bridge over water, while possessing a firearm, without violating the rule.  The applicability of the Bruen decision by the Supreme Court of the United States is clear. There is no historical precedent before 1999.

The defendant in the lawsuit,  Acting Secretary Steven Little, has not yet responded to the summons, which was filed in Sheboygan County Circuit Court. The defendant has 45 days to respond.

Analysis: This case should be a clear and easy win. The flipping of the Wisconsin Supreme Court in the election of 2022 (millions of dollars were spent by ardent leftist to accomplish this), makes the outcome of the case less certain, at least at the Wisconsin Supreme Court level. While the Court was controlled by conservative judges, prosecutors were careful not to bring up cases involving Section 25. Given the gutting of Section 25 by a previous leftist dominated court, current leftist judges might claim the plaintiff has no standing because he has not been arrested or fined.

Wisconsin precedence holds a regulation must be challenged under a separate part of the law. The lawsuit uses this to show the current plaintiff has standing.

If this case goes to the Wisconsin Supreme Court, and the Wisconsin Court holds against the plaintiff, it could be appealed to the United States Supreme Court. This was the route taken in Caetano v Massachusetts. Only a few cases which appeal to the US Supreme Court are heard each year. If appealed the US Supreme Court, victory would be in serious doubt until the Court agreed to hear the case.

©2024 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

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NV: Gunfight in Parking Lot, Armed Victim Shoots Adversary

A fatal shooting at a Walmart parking lot Wednesday afternoon is being investigated as a possible case of self-defense, police said.

No arrests have been made, according to a Henderson Police Department news release.

“Detectives determined a 38-year-old male approached a vehicle with a firearm in his hand in a confrontational manner,” the news release said. “A second male from within this vehicle discharged his firearm at the 38-year-old, striking him. After being shot, the 38-year-old male discharged multiple rounds from his firearm as the confronted subject vehicle drove away.”

The man who was shot died from his injuries at the scene. The Clark County coroner’s office will release his identity and cause and manner of death after relatives have been notified.


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TX: Houston Resident Disarms Assailant, is Wounded, Shoots, Kills, Attacker

The fatal shooting of a man at 8405 Wilcrest Drive about 4:15 p.m. on Wednesday (June 12) will be referred to a Harris County grand jury.

The identity of the deceased male is pending verification by the Harris County Institute of Forensic Sciences.

The male shooter, 26, was transported to an area hospital with a non-life-threatening gunshot wound.

HPD Homicide Division Detectives S. Chettry and M. Barton reported:

HPD patrol officers responded to a home invasion call at an apartment complex at the above address and found two males with gunshot wounds.  Houston Fire Department paramedics responded to the scene and transported both males to an area hospital, where one was pronounced deceased.

A preliminary investigation determined one of the males forced his way into the other male’s apartment and a struggle ensued.  The surviving male (tenant) was shot at least once in the leg before he managed to take the gun away and shoot the other male (suspect).

The Harris County District Attorney’s Office was contacted and it was determined the case will be reviewed by a Harris County grand jury.

More Here

Friday, June 14, 2024

ME: Gun Control Group has Negligent Discharge at Police Station

Mark on ramrod shows position to indicate an unloaded muzzleloader image courtesy Rock Island Auction (RIA)

On June 3rd, 2024, a population disarmament promoting Swedish non-governmental organization known as Humanium Metal, was destroying firearms at a Maine police department at Old Orchard Beach.  The firearms had been collected as part of a push by the disarmament group the Maine Gun Safety Coalition. In the process of destruction, one of the firearms discharged. Fortunately, only two cars were hit by the projectile. It does not appear any person was injured.

The incident was reported in themainewire.com, in a well researched and written article by Seamus Othot. From themainwire.com:

One of Maine’s primary gun control advocate groups, the Maine Gun Safety Coalition, oversaw a gun-giveback program on Saturday at local police departments throughout southern Maine.

Despite the focus on gun safety, contractors working with MGSC and the Old Orchard Beach Police Department failed to practice basic gun safety when they attempted to saw a loaded blackpowder rifle, which led to the negligent discharge of the firearm.

Luckily, instead of injuring any bystanders, the musket round instead damaged two vehicles.

Humanium Metal had been tasked with the destruction of the firearms by the Maine Gun Safety Coalition. TheMaineWire reported Humanium Metal specialized in the safe disposal of firearms. Perhaps Humanium had not dealt with muzzleloading firearms before. Perhaps, as the firearms were delivered by police, they assumed the firearms had all been checked to see if they were loaded by police.

The procedure to check a muzzleloader to see if it is loaded is simple. Determine if there is priming in the pan or a cap on the nipple(s) of the muzzleloader. If so, remove the priming and/or  the cap(s). Take the ramrod or a similar rod and slide it down the barrel until it stops.  Mark that location at the muzzle.  Pull the rod out, then slide it along to barrel to see if there is a load in the chamber. Many rods are marked to indicate how far in they will go when the chamber is empty.  If the rod goes in to the mark, the firearm is unloaded. If it does not, assume the gun has gunpowder and in the chamber.

Using a chop saw to cut through a barrel could easily create enough heat to set off a charge of black powder.

This correspondent contacted the Old Orchard Beach police. A press release was sent by email. From the press release:

On June 3 rd ,2024 the Old Orchard Beach Police Department was designated as one of several gun destruction sites for several Southern Maine Police Departments who dropped off guns collected during the event. Representatives of Humanium Metal who break down guns and convert them into sellable products were on site for destruction of the firearms. The weapons were checked on site by police dropping weapons off and police representatives from other departments who organized the event.


As one of the firearms was being cut the weapon discharged expelling a round through the barrel. The round was found to have struck two unoccupied vehicles within the parking lot. Through initial investigation the involved weapon was identified as a muzzle loader style rifle. It was determined that the heat from the cutting tool ignited gun powder still left within the barrel which discharged the round.

This is an unfortunate event, and confirms the gun safety axiom of assuming every gun is loaded until you determine differently.

 

 ©2024 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

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SC: Armed Victim Shoots, Kills Armed Robbery Suspect who was Wearing an Ankle Monitor

Josey, who was out on bond on house arrest and wearing an ankle monitor, asked the motorcycle seller to meet him at Byerly Park so he could buy it.

At the park, Josey pulled out a gun on the motorcycle seller and two others, according to police.

One of the victims, however, was legally armed with a gun and pulled it out, firing several times and hitting Josey, police said.

Officers responded to the shooting around 8:30 p.m., and EMS took Josey to the hospital, where he later died.

Police said Scott was also at the scene and ran away after shots were fired. Investigators arrested him and charged him with armed robbery, attempted murder, weapons violations and criminal conspiracy in connection with the incident at the park.

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MI: Domestic Defense? Pontiac Man Assaulted by former Girlfriend and her New Boyfriend, Shoots Them

The shooting happened shortly before 11:30 p.m. at a convenience store in the 600 block of Cesar Chavez in Pontiac.

The sheriff’s office said witnesses reported the 21-year-old man was at the store counter to purchase items when he was assaulted from behind by Bragg and his girlfriend. The three then fell to the ground, with Bragg and his girlfriend on top of the 21-year-old, striking him.

The 21-year-old drew a handgun and fired a single shot. He then attempted to pay for his merchandise and waited for deputies, the sheriff’s office said.

The case will be presented to the Oakland County Prosecutor’s Office for review.

 

More Here

Thursday, June 13, 2024

Montana Governor's Election and Senate Race for 2024


Montana's office of governor, lieutenant governor, and the  U.S. senate seat currently occupied by Senator Jon Tester are up for election in 2024. Montana is considered a safe Republican stronghold.  The Republican primary for governor totaled 78,667 votes. The Democrat primary for governor totaled 54,402 votes.  Democratic Party Senator Tester has become an anomaly among statewide elected positions in Montana.

Republican Governor Greg Gianforte is popular. He is a strong supporter of the Second Amendment in his words and actions and is almost certainly going to win.

Ryan Busse, the Democratic candidate for governor, was an executive at Kimber. He wrote a book titled "Gunfight" which blames firearms manufacturers for crimes committed with guns. In an interview on "The Trace" it seems his wife had tremendous influence in blaming firearms manufacturers for crimes. After the Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School mass murder in Florida, she blamed the NRA. From the trace:

 Six years later, after another school shooting, this time at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida, Sara’s anger boiled over. She posted on Facebook that she hoped people would back their prayers for Florida with action: “The ONLY way this will EVER change is if the NRA goes up in FLAMES!”

Busse resigned from Kimber and became a proponent of restrictive legislation aimed at gun owners. For example

 In the summer of 2020, Busse accepted a position as an adviser to Joe Biden’s presidential campaign, and this past  summer, he was hired as a senior adviser to the gun violence prevention group Giffords. He wrote the book, he said, because Americans deserve to know how the country got so polarized, and to encourage the ocean of silent moderates that he believes are out there to find their voices.

Busse testified, as a technical expert, for the state of California in their effort to ban standard capacity magazines. He puts forward the idea that manufacturers convince customers to purchase products, instead of customer demand driving manufacturers to produce the products customers desire.

The most important race in Montana is the race for the senate seat currently occupied by Democrat Jon Tester. Senator Tester is not a Second Amendment supporter. He was rated C- by the NRA in the 2018 election. In the 2018 election, he retained his senate seat with 50.3% of the vote. The Republican candidate received 46.8% of the vote. The Libertarian candidate received 2.9% of the vote. Tester runs in Montana as a "moderate", but supports Democratic party positions in Washington.

In the Democratic primary in 2024, there were 58,064 votes cast in the senate race. In the Republican primary, there were 77,074 votes cast in the senate race.  Tim Sheehy is the Republican candidate facing Jon Tester in November of 2024. The Senate is closely divided. The Montana senate race may decide whether the Republicans or the Democrats control the Senate in 2025.

The Montana Senate race will have enormous resources thrown at it. It will be hotly contested. Senator Jon Tester is one of the most vulnerable senators up for election in 2024, because Montana is strongly Republican.  2024 is presidential election year. Both Donald Trump and Governor Gianforte may have enough coattails to elect a Republican senator from Montana, in spite of the enormous advantage incumbency bestows on a candidate.

©2024 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

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PA:Uniontown Knife and Gunfight, Knifeman Shot, Killed

Witnesses told Fayette County District Attorney Michael Aubele that Stevens threatened to stab the suspect before the shooting. Aubele told KDKA-TV's Jennifer Borasso that there was some disagreement before the shooting. Police said they are looking for the shooter, who they said fled the scene.  

"This wasn't a random act of violence," Aubele said. "This was two people who knew each other."

"What we understand is that the victim, he attacked the defendant with a knife and apparently the defendant shot him," he added.


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IL: Oak Forest Gunfight, Victim Wounded, Suspects Escape

"He got a security system put in," neighbor Jake Lambert said. "It alerted him around two in the morning that somebody was in his driveway trying to break in his car. He ran down the block after him."

The resident ran after the burglars toward a nearby park when the offenders opened fire. Police say there was an exchange of gunfire between the victim and the offenders.

"They unloaded multiple rounds, probably close to 30, judging by what the police had marked out there this morning, and he was struck multiple times and taken to the hospital," Lambert said.


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Wednesday, June 12, 2024

FL: Okaloosa County Deputy who Shot, Killed Senior Airman Roger Fortson has been Fired


On May 3, 2024, Deputy Eddie Duran shot and killed Senior Airman Roger Fortson when Fortson answered the deputy's demand for entry, on a domestic violence call. The initial review of the body cam video was discussed on AmmoLand.

The Okaloosa County Sheriff's Office (OCSO) has completed their administrative internal affairs investigation into the shooting. The findings of the investigation were released on May 30, 2024. On May 31, the Sheriff's office announced Deputy Eddie Duran had violated the Sheriff's Office policy and had been terminated (fired) from his position. From the OkaloosaSheriff facebook page:

 SHALIMAR, Fla. (May 31, 2024) – The Okaloosa County Sheriff’s Office (OCSO) has terminated Deputy Eddie Duran following the completion of an administrative internal affairs investigation into the death of Roger Fortson on May 3. The administrative investigation determined the deputy’s use of deadly force was not objectively reasonable and therefore violated agency policy.

The Final Investigative Report (FIR) by the Office of Professional Standards (internal investigation by OCSO) is detailed and professionally done. It is separate from the investigation by the Florida Department of Law Enforcement. The scope of the internal investigation is limited to whether the deputy violated agency policy. Other agencies will determine if criminal actions occurred.

Several things become apparent in the detailed Final Investigative Report. The woman (neighbor) who reported the domestic disturbance created most of the drama. She based her concerns on hearing one voice (apparently Roger Fortson's) which was transmitted through an air duct. She gave the apartment number to the apartment leasing agent, but was unwilling to contact the police herself. When the fatal shots were fired, she contacted the OCSO directly.

The apartment leasing agent relayed the information to deputy Eddie Duran, and added some additional speculation about a previous incident which the administrator was not clear involved Fortson's apartment.  There were assumptions in the reports which were incorrect. Fortson was alone in the apartment with his dog. He was on the phone with his girlfriend. There was no violence ongoing.

The  FIR breaks down what happened from when the OCSO was called until the door at apartment 1401 started to be opened. The description is clear. At the time the door is starting to be opened, the FIR goes through the body camera footage in greater detail. From the time Deputy Duran draws his firearm until the shooting has stopped and Fortson is ordered to "Drop the gun" and responds with "I don't have it", every event is examined, sometimes frame by frame. The body camera recorded events at 30 frames per second. Deputy Duran fires five shots in a little under a second.

The woman who made the initial complaint never heard anyone other than Fortson speak in the apartment on May 3rd. She equated Fortson speaking loudly to an argument. She believed there was a child in Fortson's apartment, perhaps because Fortson had a dog, and she may have misinterpreted noises the dog made for noises from a child.  When she contacted OSCO, she asked if the child was OK.

Deputy Duran did not go to the "wrong apartment". He went to the apartment he was directed to go to.

Deputy Duran did not hear evidence of an ongoing disturbance when he listened outside apartment 1401. He thought he heard a muffled reference to "f*cking police". The audio is unclear, but a muffled "police" can be distinguished if the listener is primed to hear it.

Deputy Duran was primed to believe he was in an extremely dangerous situation by the poor information he had been given before he approached the door.  Deputy Duran reported when he looked at Fortson's eyes, he saw aggression.  When he saw the gun in Fortson's hand, he immediately thought he was in extreme danger, and reacted by shooting Fortson.

Analysis:

This tragic and rare situation came about from a series of unfortunate events and errors. The first witness misunderstood and mischaracterized what was happening in apartment 1401, based on her assumptions. The leasing agent reinforced those assumptions with her information about a previous event, where she was unsure of the location.  Deputy Duran was told the information was at least second hand, but acted as if it were clearly correct. Deputy Duran projected those assumptions onto what muffled words he could hear through the apartment walls.  This primed him to react violently to a situation, which up to then, had no violent component.

Roger Fortson lost his life. Deputy Duran has lost his job, and probably any future career in law enforcement. He may be convicted of a crime, such as negligent homicide or manslaughter.

The Final Investigative Report is available in full at the sheriff-okloosa.org website. The administrative investigation is not the criminal investigation, which is being conducted by the  Florida Department of Law Enforcement. Media coverage makes tragic events such as this appear to be common, when in fact, they are very rare and unusual.

 

©2024 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

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IL: Rockford Man Wounded in Gunfight

ROCKFORD, Ill. (WTVO) — Rockford Police have charged Drakaar Malone, 35, after he was allegedly wounded in a shootout on Thursday night and sought medical attention in Madison, Wisconsin.

According to police, officers were called to the 2600 block of Lawndale Avenue around 7:30 p.m. for a reported shooting victim.

The investigation revealed that the shooting was the result of an argument between Malone and another man, and each exchanged gunfire.

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FL: Domestic Defense Gunfight, Bradenton Woman Shot


Detectives say Armstrong had slapped the victim in the face earlier in the evening.

When the trio pulled up, investigators say she argued with Kevin Armstrong. 

During the argument, deputies say Armstrong grabbed a shotgun and fired at the woman as she and her two companions tried to get away. 

Investigators say Armstrong was shooting toward the woman when one of the men she was with grabbed a handgun from their parked golf cart and shot multiple rounds in Armstrong’s direction. 

During this exchange of gunfire, deputies say the female was shot in the chest.

More Here

Tuesday, June 11, 2024

MA: Carry Permit Case Derived from Bruen Resolved in Favor of Plantiff

 

The Second Amendment case of Morin v Lyver, granted certiorai, vacated, and remanded back to the First Circuit, has been decided in favor of the plaintiff, Alfred Morin.

In June of 2022, the Supreme Court published clarification of how the Second Amendment should be treated by the Courts, in the Bruen decision. Bruen gave clear guidance on how Heller should be applied. This was necessary because the Circuit courts had created a complicated two step process which was used to side step the Heller decision. In Bruen, the court said the two step process was one too many. The Court laid out a simple process to judge Second Amendment cases. As a result of Bruen four pending cases were granted certiorari, vacated, and remanded back to their circuits for rehearing using the Bruen process. Morin v Lyver was one of the four cases. It was remanded back to the First Circuit on October 3, 2022.

Morin was severely victimized as an honest man attempting to follow the law. He suffered significant legal damage for the attempt. Morin had been issued a Massachusetts license to carry in 1985. He had grown accustomed to legally go about armed. He visited the District of Columbia, and was about to enter the Museum of Natural History when he noticed he was not allowed to carry firearms in the Museum. From casetext.com:

The Commonwealth issued Plaintiff a Class A license to carry firearms in 1985. His Class A license allowed him to carry a concealed firearm in public, and he had a habit of always carrying a loaded pistol on his person. In October 2004, Plaintiff drove from Massachusetts to Washington, DC, to visit his daughter. Unaware that the District of Columbia would not recognize his Massachusetts license, he carried his pistol with him. While visiting the American Museum of Natural History during his trip, Plaintiff noticed a sign banning firearms. He approached a guard at the museum and asked to check his weapon. The guard contacted the police, who arrested Plaintiff and charged him with carrying a pistol without a license, possession of an unregistered firearm, and unlawful possession of ammunition. Plaintiff pled guilty to attempting to carry a pistol without a license, in violation of D.C. Code § 22-3204(a)(1) (2004), and possession of an unregistered firearm, in violation of D.C. Code § 6-2376 (2004). (Docket No. 21-3). The court sentenced him to sixty days in prison on each count, to run concurrently, as well as three months of supervised probation and twenty hours of community service. His prison sentence was suspended.

When Morin applied to have his carry permit renewed in 2008, he was denied because of the D.C. conviction. Morin appealed this decision all the way to the Supreme Court of the United States. Morin's case became part of the legacy of the Bruen decision. The Court of Appeals for the First Circuit sent the case back to the Massachusetts District Court.

Rather than re-hear the case, the Plaintiff (Alfred Morin) and the defendants (Commonwealth of Massachusetts and Police Chief William Lyber) agreed to a joint motion for judgement and proposed judgement. Plaintiff Morin would be issued a permit to purchase. The judgment was filed on March 3, 2023. From the Joint Motion for Judgement:

The parties agree that the Court should enter the following order of judgment in favor of Plaintiff:

Under the specific facts of this case and applicable law, including but not limited to New York State Rifle & Pistol Ass’n, Inc. v. Bruen, 142 S. Ct. 2111 (2022), the limitations contained in G.L. c.140, § 131A to the extent it incorporates G.L. c. 140, § 131(d)(ii)(D), cannot properly be applied to Plaintiff, and Defendants should accordingly issue Plaintiff a permit to purchase pursuant to G.L. c.140, §131A.

Morin is the second  of the four cases which were granted certiorari, vacated, and remanded back to their circuits to reach a final judgement after Bruen.  Young v Hawaii  reached a settlement on December 15, 2022.  Duncan v Bonta is still in play in the Ninth Circuit. Association of New Jersey Rifle and Pistol Clubs, Inc v Grewal is ongoing in the Court of Appeals for the Third Circuit.

 

©2024 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

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GA: Lithonia Gunfight, Victim and Attacker both Wounded

The Atlanta’s Best Wings shop is located inside a gas station plaza at 6647 Covington Highway in Lithonia. The store owner showed Atlanta News First’s Don Shipman surveillance video from inside the store when the shooting happened around 2 a.m. Wednesday.

In the video, you can see two customers inside the store when one of them opens fire on the other. The shooter then runs out of the building, while the victim slowly drags himself across the store floor to a corner of the room.

A few minutes later, the shooter returns, grabbing what appears to be a backpack from inside the store - and when he’s leaving the building, the shooting victim returns fire, injuring the shooter.


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IL: Crestwood Gunfight, Tow Truck Driver Killed

A tow truck driver was killed in a road rage shooting Tuesday afternoon in south suburban Crestwood, police say.

The driver of a tow truck and the driver of a Buick were near Cal-Sag Road and Cicero Avenue when they collided about 3 p.m., the Crestwood Police Department said.

Both drivers continued driving south on Cicero Avenue but stopped near 132nd Street, where the tow truck driver pulled out a gun and shot at the person in the Buick, according to policd. The driver of the Buick, who had a valid concealed carry license, pulled out a gun and returned fire, striking the tow truck driver, police said.


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Monday, June 10, 2024

Conversations with Brandon Maddox #2: the Hearing Protection Act



Brandon Maddox at Silencer Central, 2024 

Brandon Maddox and Silencer Central is an American success story. Brandon went from a Federal Firearms License  (FFL) in his home to the largest silencer dealer in the USA. Today, Brandon's companies dominate the silencer/suppressor market, regulated under the National Firearms Act (NFA).

This correspondent met Brandon Maddox at the 2024 SHOT Show. Brandon had read several AmmoLand articles, recognized this writer, and started a conversation. Brandon graciously agreed to be interviewed. This is the second in a series of articles resulting from several interviews. Quotes have been lightly edited for clarity. Link to Brandon Maddox #1.

Silencers are currently regulated under the National Firearms Act (NFA). Such items require a $200 tax, with a Byzantine, intrusive application process, including a photograph, fingerprints and a wait time of several months to over a year to accomplish.  

The Hearing Protection Act (HPA) would move silencers/suppressors out of the jurisdiction of the NFA and regulate them with the same standards as rifles or shotguns.  Brandon Maddox has strong opinions about the HPA.

Weingarten: Did you have a position on the Hearing Protection Act (HPA)? 

Brandon Maddox: We would love for that to pass. It would open it up where we would be able to  sell more suppressors.  We are both a dealer and we also are manufacturers. We have a line of products that are some of the best selling in the nation. People may not realize this, because people do not have access to them because we sell direct. We could sell a whole lot more if they became non-NFA items. 

I think where we differ from some people is we feel there could be some sort of crawl, walk, run. Some people are really focused on  HPA, HPA, HPA.  To me, it is obvious Biden is not going to sign that. I get trying to create some momentum for that. What we have been looking for is: are there some key wins we can get for the silencers that would help us gradually get closer to the Hearing Protection Act getting approved instead of focusing solely on that?

For example, We submitted a bill to Congress (House) (and are) looking to submit a version to the Senate as well. Currently the $200 NFA tax, created in 1934, goes directly to the Treasury, goes directly into the General Fund. 

So what we are looking at, is there a way to allocate that money similar to the Pittman-Robertson that goes to conservation?  Then also you drill that down where you put more for gun ranges and benefit youth training. Then also put a component in there where the ATF has 90 days to approve a silencer, or it is automatically approved. By forcing their hand to do that, we would allocate some of the funds that come from the tax stamp to the ATF so they could increase their infrastructure, whether it be electronic or hiring whatever they need to do to get the systems in place so they can approve these in 90 days. 

Our concern is that from a non-NFA item if the FBI does a background check, and they come up with a "further review" option, after three days, the dealer can actually transfer it. So we are trying to create something analogous to that with NFA. If you have been running a background check and after 90 days, you can't determine whether it's able to be approved, we would like for it to automatically be approved.

Weingarten: That would be a major change.

Brandon Maddox: Oh Yeah! Because that's the problem now. So the FBI would say,  we are statutorily required to focus 100% of our efforts on the local dealer and firearms transfers so that we can meet that three day minimum and give a response to the dealer before they just automatically transfer it. 

I get their problem is a lot of these records are, a person might have been charged with X and there is nothing in writing, or records have been destroyed, so they do not know how it ended, like if the person was charged with something different. That creates the open item. We would like for there to be some finality on that open check with NFA. Now, not only is it statutorily a non-priority, the priority is for regular FFL dealers for non-NFA.  There is no deadline. 

My position is the ATF has 60 days to determine whether I am a licensee. So on my applications they have 60 days to respond. If I change my address as an FFL, statutorily they have 30 days to respond.  So it doesn't seem unreasonable to say you have 90 days to respond to a customer submitting to be approved on an NFA item.

Weingarten: Whether it is doable is hard to know. 

Brandon Maddox: What is interesting, the conservation groups, luckily, are typically Democrat and Republican. There are a lot of moderates that support conservation. The theory is, if we can move some of that money from the tax stamp into conservation, you start getting more Democrats, you start getting people like Manchin because he's West Virginia's senator, and the NFA branch is based there.

The thought was we could get them on that side. Then say, pretty much everyone wants to speed up the process. Even Democrats are into "funding additional ATF activity". If you could get some more funding for NFA, then you could say: Not only are we going to hold you to 90 days, we are going to give you 5,10,15 million dollars to implement it. Then it seems more reasonable.

Weingarten: It sounds like a reasonable approach to me. 

Brandon Maddox: That is what I would call baby steps toward the Hearing Protection Act

Weingarten: Here is a corollary question: You have built an empire by making it easier for people to go through the convoluted, Byzantine process of getting permission to own a silencer. If that process becomes essentially non-existent, and you can buy a silencer the same as you can buy a rifle, are you worried about the effect it could have on your business?

Maddox: Let me ask you a question. We look at our business as two separate businesses.  We have the Banish Suppressors as one side of our business and we have the Silencer Central process as another side of our business. When you look at the potential upside for the Banish suppressors, the upside is so great it completely negates any concerns with the impact on the process side.

Weingarten: Its a good argument.

Maddox: 100 percent! There are so many obstacles. People don't like to pay for something they don't get instantly. People don't like to wait. People feel like they are getting scrutinized with fingerprints, photos, create a trust, sheriffs notified. All these things are barriers to keep people from buying. I always say, I have eighteen manufacturers making Banish suppressors for me. If the HPA went through, I would be in a position where I could increase my volume 10, 20 fold kind of overnight. It is a great scenario!

Analysis:  It depends on the 2024 elections. If Donald Trump wins the Presidency and the Republicans take the Senate and hold the House, the HPA might pass quickly. It almost did in 2016, but failed because of RINOs, especially Paul Ryan, who was Speaker of the House.  If Biden or another Democrat wins the Presidency, the HPA is dead.  If Trump wins the Presidency, but Democrats control the House or Senate, the baby steps approach put forward by Brandon Maddox could speed up and simplify the NFA process. The more legal silencers there are, the closer we come to removing them from the NFA.


©2024 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

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FL: Domestic Defense, Pensacola Man Shot by Woman

The report states they started arguing again when Smith began to push and pull her off the couch. The woman went to her bedroom to get away from him, but Smith followed her.

According to the report, the woman said Smith picked up a glass candle holder and held it as if he was going to hit her with it. He then hit her once.

The woman told deputies she was in fear Smith was going to hit her with it again, according to the report. She then grabbed her gun from a bag by the bed and shot him once.

 

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MO: Edwards Domestic Defense, Son Shoots Mother's Husband

According to the Sheriff’s Office, a woman called 911 at about 10:40 p.m. from a home in rural Edwards saying that her 15-year-old son had shot her husband while she was being beaten. When deputies arrived at the scene, the 41-year-old man was pronounced dead from a gunshot wound.

The woman and 15-year-old boy were transported to a local hospital and treated for injuries consistent with domestic violence. The woman was interviewed by investigators and their preliminary investigation suggests that the use of lethal force was used in self-defense or defense of another.


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TX: Domestic Defense, Corpus Christi Girfreind Shoots Boyfreind


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TX: Domestic Defense, Man Cuts Wife, is Shot

HPD Major Assaults & Family Violence Division Detective L. Garcia reported that HPD patrol officers responded to a shooting/stabbing incident at an apartment complex at the above address. A preliminary investigation determined the suspect, later identified as Tillman, was holding his 11-year-old daughter at knife point in the kitchen of the apartment, so the child’s mother (victim) retrieved a firearm. Tillman charged at the woman, cut her with the knife and tried to take the firearm from her. During the struggle, the firearm discharged and Tillman was struck in the face area and lower body.

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OK: Ponca City Domestic Defense, Jacob S. Grudowski killed

According to a press release from Ponca City Police, officers responded to a report of a home invasion with gunshots around 7:00 p.m., near West Central Avenue and South Flormable Street in Ponca City on Sunday.

Police say that when officers arrived on the scene, witnesses shared that a person had been shot after attempting to force his way into a residence, and fire shots at the residents who lived there.

Officers found 29-year-old Jacob S. Grudowski near the residence, with multiple gunshot wounds, police said.

Police shared that authorities attempted life-saving measures, but Grudowski was pronounced dead at the scene.

Police confirmed that Grudowski had been involved in a domestic situation with one of the residents at this home. When Grudowski arrived at the home, he fired multiple gunshots after attempting to enter the home forcibly, police said.

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Saturday, June 08, 2024

FL: Constitutionality of Ban on Guns in Post Office Appealed to Eleventh Circuit



On January 12, 2024, Judge Kathryn Kimball  ruled the federal ban on possession of firearms in post offices is unconstitutional because it violates the Second Amendment. From the decision:

The United States indicted Emmanuel Ayala, a postal worker, for possessing a firearm in a Federal facility in violation of 18 U.S.C. § 930(a). Ayala argues that statute is unconstitutional as applied to him because the historical record does not support a law banning firearms in post offices. See N.Y. State Rifle & Pistol Ass’n v. Bruen, 597 U.S. 1 (2022). Relying on dicta from earlier cases, the United States responds that the Second Amendment allows it to punish the bearing of arms inside any government building. But the Supreme Court has been clear: the government must point to historical principles that would permit it to prohibit firearms possession in post offices. See id. at 17, 24. The United States fails to meet that burden. Thus, I dismiss the § 930(a) charge because it violates Ayala’s Second Amendment right to bear arms.

The case was discussed in a previous AmmoLand article.

On February 12, 2024, the Assistant United States Attorney submitted notice to the court the matter would be  appealed the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit. From the document:

The United States of America appeals to the United States Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit the order granting defendant’s motion to dismiss in part, Doc. 57, and the dismissal of count one, Doc. 58, both entered in this action on January 12, 2024.

On February 13, 2024, Judge Kathryn Kimball issued an administrative stay on the case pending the appeal.

There does not appear to be any significant movement on this case, except the withdrawal of Ross Roberts as the prosecutor in the case.

On May 2, 2024, Ross Roberts Assistant United States Attorney, has withdrawn from the case. Assistant United States Attorney Abigail King will now represent the government in this matter.

USA v Ayala is opposite what happened in Colorado in Bonidy v USPS. Bonidy initially won his case in the District court, in 2012. The USPS appealed to the Court of Appeals for the Tenth Circuit. The Tenth Circuit reversed the district court and held, because the Heller decision mentioned "government buildings" the USPS could ban guns on any USPS property, in 2015.

Bonidy asked the Supreme Court to hear the case. However, Justice Scalia had died, and the court had only eight members. The Supreme Court refused to hear the Bonidy case in 2016.

The Bruen decision in 2022 slapped down the Tenth Circuit  appeals court approach to the Second Amendment. The guidance under the Bruen decision is clear. Judge Kimball, in the Ayala case, followed the guidance from the Bruen decision, and ruled the ban on guns in the post office is unconstitutional. When the case goes to the Court of Appeals for the Eleventh Circuit, we will find if the three judge panel on the Eleventh Circuit will follow the clear guidance given by Bruen.

There is no applicable historical precedent for banning guns in post offices. No ban on guns in the post office existed when the Second Amendment was ratified, or at the time of the ratification of the Fourteenth Amendment. The ban is very recent in Constitutional terms. It was created in 1972.

©2024 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

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CA: Armed Samaritan Shoots Suspect who was Assaulting a Woman

STANTON, Ca. (June 3, 2024): On Sunday, June 2, 2024, at 7:49 p.m., a man reported to Sheriff’s Dispatch he shot a male who was assaulting a woman in the 7100 block of Custer Way in the city of Stanton. When deputies arrived, they located a 20-year-old Hispanic male suffering from a gunshot wound.  Deputies immediately began performing life saving measures. Moments later, they were relieved by the Orange County Fire Authority who transported the man to a local trauma center.

The man who reported the shooting remained at the incident’s location, was interviewed by Sheriff’s investigators, and later released at the scene.  It is believed the man is a rideshare driver who was in the area dropping off a passenger at the time of the incident.

The woman who was assaulted, was treated at the scene by the Orange County Fire Authority for injuries sustained during the assault.

The 20-year-old male suspect is currently being treated at a local hospital where he is listed in critical but stable condition. He may face charges pending further investigation.

The Sheriff’s Department is asking anyone with information regarding this incident to contact Sheriff’s Dispatch at 714-647-7000. Anonymous information may be provided through Orange County Crime Stoppers at 1-855-TIP-OCCS or online at www.ocsheriff.gov/occrimestoppers.

 

Link to ocsheriff.gov

Friday, June 07, 2024

NRA Wins Supreme Court Decision in NRA v Vullo


On May 11, 2018, over six years ago, the National Rifle Association (NRA) filed a lawsuit in federal court alleging the Government of New York violated the organization's First Amendment rights by coercing third parties, particularly insurance companies and banks, to cease to do business with the NRA. The government officials explicitly stated their dislike of the advocacy of the NRA to promote gun ownership and the Second Amendment. The opinion was issued on May 30, 2024.  The ruling was expected, as explained in a previous AmmoLand article.

The case was relatively clear. Government officials Andrew Cuomo (Governor) and Maria Vullo (Superintendent of the New York State (NYS) Department of Financial Services) had made on the record statements to regulated entities to the effect if they continued to do business with the NRA, the regulatory power of NYS would be used to punish them. The case was so egregious the American Civil Liberties Union (ACLU), long an opponent of the NRA and the Second Amendment, filed an amicus brief in favor of the NRA.  The New York district court found Vullo has misused her power. The Court of Appeals for the Second Circuit sided with the New York State Government. The Supreme Court decided to hear the case. Oral arguments were heard on March 18, 2024. The Supreme Court issued its ruling on May 30, 2024. It was a unanimous opinion, 9-0 in favor of the NRA and the First Amendment.

Justice  Sotomayor wrote the majority opinion. Justice Gorsuch and Justice Jackson both wrote concurring opinions. From the Majority opinion by Justice Sotomayor:

 JUSTICE SOTOMAYOR delivered the opinion of the Court. 

Six decades ago, this Court held that a government entity’s “threat of invoking legal sanctions and other means of coercion” against a third party “to achieve the suppression”of disfavored speech violates the First Amendment. Ban-tam Books, Inc. v. Sullivan, 372 U. S. 58, 67 (1963). Today,the Court reaffirms what it said then: Government officials cannot attempt to coerce private parties in order to punish or suppress views that the government disfavors. Petitioner National Rifle Association (NRA) plausibly alleges that respondent Maria Vullo did just that. As superintendent of the New York Department of Financial Services,Vullo allegedly pressured regulated entities to help her stifle the NRA’s pro-gun advocacy by threatening enforcement actions against those entities that refused to disassociate from the NRA and other gun-promotion advocacy groups. Those allegations, if true, state a First Amendment claim.

The concurring opinions by Justice Gorsuch and Justice Jackson appear at odds to this correspondent. Justice Gorsuch' concurring opinion indicates the First Amendment should be strongly protected. The concurring opinion by Justice Jackson seems to urge courts to be much more limited in their protections of First Amendment rights.

With this unanimous ruling issued by the Supreme Court, the case is remanded back to the District Court in New York for further proceedings.  It is unclear what the results of the case will be.

Analysis: This is a strong ruling for the First Amendment and the NRA. How the District court rules on the issue will be very important. The Court could hold New York officials personally responsible for their conduct. If such a ruling was issued, it would be a strong indication future courts will not allow such egregious violations of First Amendment rights.

 

©2024 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

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