Friday, August 24, 2007

Those good ol' British gun bans keeping everybody safe again: "Two teenagers have been arrested after an 11-year-old boy was shot dead in the latest in a series of violent youth deaths that has forced inner-city gun crime in Britain right up the political agenda. Rhys Jones was playing football in a pub car park in Liverpool last night when he was shot by a hooded youth riding a BMX bicycle, Merseyside Police said. Police were questioning two youths, aged 18 and 14, as British Prime Minister Gordon Brown condemned "a heinous crime that has shocked the whole of the country". Since taking over from Tony Blair on June 27, Mr Brown has signalled that law and order will remain a priority amid a string of high-profile cases of young people shot dead, often in deprived urban areas. At least six teenagers have been killed in shootings in London since February, while the northern city of Manchester has also seen a string of gun attacks involving young people"

More on those great British gun laws: "Senior police officers have been warning for several months that a growing number of teenagers in big cities are becoming involved in gun crime. The age of victims and suspects has fallen over the past three years as the availability of firearms in some cities has risen. Liverpool and Manchester are the cities where illegal guns are most readily available, with criminals claiming that some weapons are being smuggled from Ireland. Sawn-off shotguns are now being sold for as little as 50 pounds, and handguns for. Despite a ban on handguns introduced in 1997 after 16 children and their teacher were shot dead in the Dunblane massacre the previous year, their use in crimes has almost doubled to reach 4,671 in 2005-06. Official figures show that although Britain has some of the toughest anti-gun laws in the world, firearm use in crime has risen steadily. This year eight young people have been killed in gun attacks: six in London and one each in Manchester and Liverpool. "Illegal firearms have become increasingly accessible to younger offenders who appear more likely to use these firearms recklessly," a report on gun crime commissioned by the Home Office cautioned last year."

Louisiana: Nutter starts shootout: "A man with a history of mental problems started a shootout with another man in North Shreveport Wednesday morning that left the instigator critically wounded, authorities and neighbors said. Donald Richardson, 35, faces attempted murder charges upon his release from the hospital. A neighbor, Diane Howard, took out a protective order against Richardson back in January. Police Chief Henry Whitehorn said Richardson hadn't violated the protective order, but had been harrassing others."

Oklahoma jury acquits man in killing: "A Pittsburg County jury on Wednesday acquitted a man of first-degree murder in the death of a former employee. Mordecai had once worked for Krebbs' construction company and the two men had been friends. Krebbs testified on Wednesday that he shot Mordecai, but did so after he was assaulted. Witnesses also said that Mordecai had threatened Krebbs previously. On the stand, Krebbs said Mordecai had called him earlier that night wanting to fight him and had threatened to burn his house down if he didn't come home. When Krebbs returned to his residence around 1:30 or 2 a.m., he saw a strange car parked outside his driveway and another one pulling out from his home, according to his testimony. He said he put a clip in a handgun he had in his truck, and when he pulled up close to his house, he saw Mordecai waiting for him. Krebbs told the jury that Mordecai attacked him as he sat inside his truck. "He was coming in through the window," Krebbs told the jury. "I shot, not to kill him, just to get him away from me."

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