Thursday, September 16, 2004

Even replica guns bad: "Some Gilroy [CA] police sergeants aren't happy that a local hobby shop sells 'airsoft' guns, which look like real firearms but in fact shoot plastic BBs. They would like to see a law limiting the possession or sale of these replica guns, such as one that will ban their possession in Morgan Hill public places as of Sept. 24. ... Airsoft guns are perfectly legal to buy, sell and possess, regardless of age, but when someone mistakes one for a real gun, police respond with their own -- very real -- sidearms drawn. It's only a matter of time, the sergeants say, before an innocent child or teen-ager makes a wrong move and is shot, perhaps killed."

Police pick on whoever is handy: "Two Sonoma County [CA] men who voluntarily turned in their handguns after being contacted by detectives probing the mysterious slaying of two Christian camp counselors last month complained that they have unfairly faced suspicion simply because government records list them as gun owners. The two Bodega Bay residents said investigators visited their homes this week seeking permission to conduct ballistics tests on their guns .... 'If this is going to help them, great,' he said. 'But while they're in here, they're asking, 'Hey, you got anything illegal we need to know about? No, except for the meth lab in my bathroom.' C'mon guys. This is a fishing expedition.' ... The other man who surrendered his guns said he, too, thinks his think civil rights were violated when two detectives showed up unannounced and asked if they could come inside to make sure the weapons were 'safe and accounted for.'"

U Maine offers storage for student guns: "For a handful of students at the University of Maine, buying textbooks, fine-tuning class schedules and checking in weapons are all normal parts of their back-to-school routine. Student hunters, martial arts enthusiasts and paint-ball fiends are welcome to live on campus or in fraternity and sorority houses, but they must lock their weapons up at the UMaine Department of Public Safety, where a room is earmarked for that purpose. ... [A] 2003 nationwide poll of 150 schools showed that UMaine is one of only 11 schools that has storage facilities for guns on campus, according to Alliance for Justice, an association of advocacy organizations."

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