Thursday, October 28, 2021

IL: Armed Samaritan Stops Theft of Tobacco from Walgreens in Chicago

Two men who have stolen large volumes of cigarettes from Walgreens stores across the North Side had a little scare when they targeted one of the chain’s River North stores on October 14: They came face to face with a concealed carry holder who sent them running.

CWB Chicago first told you about the thieves one month ago.

But, according to a new community alert from Chicago police, the thieves have struck several more times since then — including two thefts within hours of being confronted by the licensed gun carrier.

Police went to the Walgreens at 641 North Clark in River North around 8:30 p.m. on October 14 after two men hopped the front counter, confronted a manager, and began collecting cigarettes. But a concealed carry holder interrupted the theft, and the duo ran away.


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WV: Resident Shoots Intruder in Chest, Wounds Friend in Hand


Kanawha County deputies said they are investigating after an intruder trying to enter an apartment in Jefferson was shot by the resident who also accidentally wounded his own friend.

The incident happened just after midnight Tuesday, according to a news release from the Kanawha Sheriff’s Office.

 Deputies said it appears the intruder mistook the apartment for a neighboring unit belonging to a relative. The gun the intruder held was a pellet gun, which he drew while wrestling with friends of the resident in the apartment.

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OR: Followup, No Charges in Shooting Death of Skyler Weisberg (mistaken Domestic)

"Ernst told Weisberg his wife was not at the location and asked him to leave," EPD said. "Weisberg continued to bang on the window to the apartment, eventually breaking the window and making entry into apartment. The man was armed with a handgun and continued to tell Weisberg to leave."

According to police, Weisberg advanced toward Ernst making comments about death. Ernst shot at Weisberg twice causing Weisberg to temporarily stop advancing toward Ernst, but then began advancing again. Ernst shot at Weisberg a third time and Weisberg fell to the ground just feet away from the hallway leading to Ernst’s bedroom.

Ernst and his girlfriend followed instructions from the 911 call taker and arriving police officers, and were removed from the apartment. Responding officers provided medical care to Weisberg until the arrival of Eugene Springfield Fire personnel who pronounced Weisberg deceased.


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Wednesday, October 27, 2021

Kyle Rittenhouse: Wisconsin Weapons Statutes, and the Definition of Dangerous Weapons

Image from facebook, page taken down. Cropped, scaled, and green text added by Dean Weingarten.
 

In the Kyle Rittenhouse self defense case in Kenosha, Wisconsin, much has been written about prosecutors choosing to charge Kyle with "Possession of a dangerous weapon by a person under 18." and the exemptions to the law which apply to Kyle.

The legislative history in Wisconsin and of the particular law, 948.60 are at the crux of the matter.  Ordinary rifles and shotguns, which are not considered "concealable" in Wisconsin or federal law, have never been defined as "dangerous weapons" under Wisconsin law.  The definition of "dangerous weapons" is very limited.

It is reasonable that rifles and shotguns were excluded from the list of "dangerous weapons", because they are not "concealable" under the law.  Wisconsin has a long history of differentiating between rifles and shotguns and concealable firearms. Rifles and shotguns are used in crime a tiny fraction of the amount concealable weapons are. Traditionally firearms which cannot easily be concealed are considered less dangerous because other people can see them and avoid confrontations with the armed person.  DA Binger makes that case, talking about  Kyle carrying a rifle in a previous hearing:

..it is designed to deter people. It is designed to threaten others; to let them know, don’t mess with me, look what I’ve got.

There have been  age restrictions on the access to particular weapons in Wisconsin law for decades. The precursor to statute 948.60, Statute 941.22  prohibited the possession of a pistol by a person under the age of 18 in Wisconsin, in 1955. It includes an exception for a pistol given by a parent for supervised target shooting. 

In 1955, the age of majority was 21. The law was an age restriction, not a restriction of all minors. "Pistol" was defined as any firearm having a barrel less than 12 inches.

 (4) In this section "pistol" means any firearm having a barrel less than 12 inches long.
Wisconsin already had restrictions on the carry of concealed weapons; this law banned the possession of concealable firearms by children under the age of 18. It allowed the possession of pistols for target shooting and while target shooting under the supervision of an adult. The law required law enforcement officers to confiscate pistols found in the possession of children under the age of 18.

In 1984, the legislature restricted hunting and the possession of all firearms by age gradations from under 12 years, 12-14 years,14-16 years, 16 - 18 years in statute 29.226 (hunting) and 29.227 (possession and control), (1983 Wisconsin Act 420  Restrictions on hunting and use of firearms by persons under 16 years of age.) and the previously mentioned 941.22. The effective date of the act is January 1, 1985.

In 1987, the legislature creates 948.60, as part of the 1987 Wisconsin Act 332, transferring and expanding the prohibitions on the possession of concealable firearms, (with a barrel length less than 12 inches) to include other specific weapons defined as "dangerous weapons".  Act 332 is an enormous bill, creating chapter 948 as an entire new chapter in Wisconsin law. There are massive changes in Wisconsin law. 

The "dangerous weapons" statute appears to be part of the trendy weapons laws passed in the period, in response to "kung fu" movies.

The list of dangerous weapons is very specific. All of them are concealable.

(1) In this section, "dangerous weapon" means any firearm having a barrel less than 12 inches long; any electric weapon, as defined in s. 941.295 (4); metallic knuckles or knuckles of any substance which could be put to the same use with the same or similar effect as metallic knuckles; a nunchaku or any similar weapon consisting of 2 sticks of wood, plastic or metal connected at one end by a length of rope, chain, wire or leather; a cestus or similar material weighted with metal or other substance and worn on the hand; a shuriken or any similar pointed star-like object intended to injure a person when thrown; or a manrikigusari or similar length of chain having weighted ends.

The new law deleted the part of the previous law which required law enforcement officers to seize pistols possessed by people under the age of 18. This allowed more discretion on the part of officers, and was likely required as due process of law.

In 1991, the law is re-written to move "having a barrel length of less than 12 inches long" from section 1 to section 3(C), 

948.60 (3) (c) This section does not apply to a child who possesses or is armed with a firearm having a barrel 12 inches in length or longer and who is in compliance with ss. 29.226 and 29.227. This section does not apply to an adult who transfers a firearm having a barrel 12 inches in length or longer to a child who is in compliance with ss. 29.226 and 29.227.

This creates an exception in the definition of what is a dangerous weapon for children "who possess or is armed" and who are in compliance with ss 29.226 (possessing a hunting certificate while hunting for anyone born after January 1, 1973) and ss 29.227, which restricts the possession of firearms, by age, for people under the age of 16.

Months later in 1992, (1 April) Act 139 is passed. It includes Section  948.55  (Leaving or storing a loaded firearm within the reach or easy access of a child.)  This part of the law applies to children under 14 years of age. The crime here applies to a loaded firearm, not a dangerous weapon.

Act 139 includes sections 2 (a), (b) and (c) to be inserted into 948.60.

Section 2 (a) defines the crime of a going armed with a dangerous weapon while under the age of 18 as a class A misdemeanor;

Section 2 (b) create a crime for someone who intentionally sells, loans or gives a dangerous weapon to a person under the age of 18, and defines the crime as a Class A misdemeanor; except in the case of Section 2 (c), where the crime becomes a felony.

Section 2 (c) Changes the crime to a felony if a person violates 2 (b) and the child who is in possession of the firearm discharges it and someone dies because of it.

Analysis:

The 1991 changes created some minor ambiguity in the law. Ordinarily, "in compliance with" for a hunting statute would be satisfied if someone is not hunting.  If a child is not hunting, and is in possession of a firearm with a barrel longer than 12 inches, but meets the age requirements in 29.227, they would be in compliance with both 29.226 and 29.227.  If they meet these requirements, the firearm is not considered a "dangerous weapon" under  948.60.

Federal law and state law restrict the possession of short barreled rifles and shotguns. Section 948.60 creates an exception in the definition of what are dangerous weapons, for children, if the firearms have a barrel length of more than 12 inches. The federal and state laws on the restrictions for short barreled rifles and shotguns restrict barrel lengths to more than 16 inches for rifles, 18 inches for shotguns, and an overall length of more than 26 inches.

There is a lot of overlap in the 1991 version of 948.60 definition and the federal and state laws on short barreled rifles and shotguns, but it is not completely the same. When the definitions do not match, 948.60 appears to create an exception to the state law for children to possess what adults may not possess without a federal tax stamp. An example would be a short barreled shotgun with a barrel length of 12+ inches whose overall length is less than 26 inches. 

2 (c) changes the wording from dangerous weapon in (b) to firearm in (c). Firearms are the only dangerous weapons listed which can be "discharged".

Some dangerous weapons are firearms, but not all firearms are dangerous weapons, because of the exceptions in 3(c). Firearms with barrels longer than 12 inches are not dangerous weapons if the children who are possessing or armed with them are "in compliance" with 29.226 and 29.227.

Section 948.60 2(c) becomes important for Dominic Black, Kyle Rittenhouse's friend, who supplied the rifle to him, because he can be charged with a felony if Kyle Rittenhouse is convicted of possession of a dangerous weapon by a person under the age of 18. This charge can be used as leverage on Dominic Black, perhaps to coerce cooperation with the prosecution.

In 1995,in Act 27, the legislature changes the wording in 948.60 from "child" to "person", and repeals 948.60 2(d) in Act 77.

In 1995, Wisconsin passes a strict firearms preemption law, limiting almost all firearms legal authority to the state legislature.

In 1998 in Act 248, the legislature re-numbers statutes 29.226 to 29.593 and 29.227 to 29.304

In 1998, Wisconsin passes an amendment to the state constitution protecting the right to keep and bear arms. No age restrictions are mentioned. It seems to apply to the Rittenhouse case:

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

In 2001, in Act 109 , the Legislature changes the felony in 948.60 2(c) to a class G from a class D. 

In 2005, in Act 163, the Legislature Amends 948.60 3(c). The change clarifies the ambiguity in the 1991 law. Instead of saying the law does not apply to a person under 18 who possesses or is armed with a firearm having a barrel 12 inches or longer, the prohibition which has been in effect since 1955, the law brings the Wisconsin statute in to harmony with the Wisconsin and federal law on short barreled rifles and shotguns.

At present, 948.60(c) says it applies only to persons under the age of 18 if they are armed with rifles and shotguns that are short barreled rifles or shotguns. This is in accordance with existing state and federal restrictions on short barreled rifles and shotguns. It removes the exception in the law for some short barreled rifles or shotguns for persons under the age of 18. The section of the law dealing with short barreled rifles and shotguns is Wisconsin Section 941.28. The change is consistent with the long established precedent that the definition of "dangerous weapons" in 948.60 is for concealable weapons.

Instead of saying a person under the age of 18 has to be "in compliance" with the hunting and possession statutes in what is now 29.304 and 29.253, the law is changed to say the law applies only if they are not in compliance. It is difficult to violate a hunting law if you are not hunting.

The law makes very limited changes, simply clarifying what already exists in the law.  From the Act

(c) This section applies only to a person under 18 years of age who possesses or is armed with a rifle or a shotgun if the person is in violation of s. 941.28 or is not in compliance with ss. 29.304 and 29.593. This section applies only to an adult who transfers a firearm to a person under 18 years of age if the person under 18 years of age is not in compliance with ss. 29.304 and 29.593 or to an adult who is in violation of s. 941.28.
In 2011, Wisconsin passes their "shall issue" concealed carry permit statute. It creates another age limit in the law, dealing with concealed weapons. To obtain a concealed carry permit, the person must be 21 years old or older. Wisconsin now has several different age limitations on the possessing weapons or being armed. They are: under 12, from 12 to 14, 14 to 16, 16 to 18, 18 to 21, and 21 and above.

To sum up, the age restrictions in Wisconsin statutes on possession and control of firearms outside of family land, require the accompaniment of a person 18 or more, until the person is 16. 

From 16 to 18 rifles and shotguns may be carried openly without the presence of an adult, but not dangerous weapons as defined by law. From 18 to 21  legal weapons may be carried openly, the list of dangerous weapons in 948.60 no longer applies, but concealed carry is still prohibited. Age 21 or over, a concealed carry permit shall be issued if applied for. Most adults are eligible.

These complicated restrictions have been arrived at through a long series of laws. A general prohibition on the open carry of rifles and shotguns has never been part of Wisconsin law for persons aged 16 to 18.

The author is not a lawyer, but has read and studied a great deal of firearms law in numerous states. It does not appear 648.60 2(a) is "swallowed up" by 3(c). 2(a) only applies to dangerous weapons as defined in the law. 3(c) removes rifles and shotguns which are not short barreled rifles and shotguns from the law. Short barreled rifles and shotguns, all pistols, and all the listed "dangerous weapons" are still included in the law.

 

©2021 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

Gun Watch

 

NC: Home Invasion Gunfight, Two Intruders Killed In Fayetteville

Fayetteville officers were sent to respond to reports of a residential break-in shortly after 5 p.m., the police department said in a news release.

While the officers were on their way to the scene, a caller said he shot people who broke into his residence.

Police confirmed when they arrived that the two people were dead, according to the release. The shooter has not yet been identified, and the names of the victims won’t be released until their relatives are notified.

More Here

FL: Home Invasion leads to Shootout in Street

An armed home invasion robbery in Coral Springs led to a wild gun battle Monday, with the victim and one of the robbers reportedly exchanging gunfire in the street, court records show.

Deja Goods, 26, who Coral Springs Police said was working with the robbers, was arrested and charged with home invasion. She was being held without bail at the Broward Main Jail late Wednesday, records show.

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Tuesday, October 26, 2021

VA: Judge Dismisses Charges Against Fred Asiedu for failure of Probable Cause in Dog Shooting

A man who shot and fatally wounded his neighbor’s dog in southern Stafford County earlier this year is no longer facing charges.

Fred Asiedu, 26, went to Stafford General District Court Wednesday facing felony charges of maiming a dog and destruction of property and a misdemeanor charge of reckless handling of a firearm.

At the end of a preliminary hearing, Judge Angela O’Connor decided not to send the charges to circuit court for trial. O’Connor ruled that the evidence was insufficient even for probable cause, a much lower standard than the “beyond a reasonable doubt” standard required for an eventual conviction.

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GA: Jury Acquits Jaron More of Murder by Reason of Self Defense

A jury acquitted an Augusta man of murder charges Wednesday in a 2020 fatal shooting at the victim's home.

All the eyewitnesses and Jaron Moore said he shot 39-year-old Reginald Frank on Oct. 10, 2020. The question for the Richmond County Superior Court jury this week was whether the shooting was in self defense or an unjustified killing and therefore murder.

The jury deliberated about an hour and a half before returning its verdict of not guilty.

Moore, 28, had been held in jail since his arrest last year but he was to be released Wednesday. Moore had no criminal history outside of misdemeanor offenses.

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TX: Domestic Defense, Woman Shoots Man During Attempted Break-in


A woman shot a man during an attempted burglary Wednesday in the 6000 block of Starling Drive, police said. Police responded to the area after receiving a report of shots fired. Upon arriving at the scene, officers found a man who they believe is in his 30s suffering from a gunshot wound. He was taken to a hospital and is expected to recover.

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Monday, October 25, 2021

FL: Woman Risks Safety to stop Armed Robbers who Endangered Community (Video of Gunfight)



WEST PARK, Fla. – A South Florida woman was nearly killed over two dogs she was selling.

She got into a shootout with three attempted dog robbers Monday night, and the entire ordeal was caught on camera. The video was obtained exclusively by Local 10 News.

One of the suspects, a 16-year-old boy, has been arrested, the Broward Sheriff’s Office said Wednesday morning. Investigators believe the other two are also juveniles.

The woman said she was in fear for her and her girlfriend’s life and was forced to open fire after a group of young men started shooting at her.

A bullet narrowly missed her head and she ducked behind her car for cover.

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Sunday, October 24, 2021

VA: Robbery, Assault Victim fires at Suspect

Sheriff’s Maj. Troy Skebo said the victim was at the Bank of America ATM in the 10300 block of Courthouse Road at 9 p.m. Friday holding his cash in his hand when the suspect approached in a “threatening” manner. He then hit the victim several times, Skebo said.

The victim, a concealed weapon permit holder, responded by drawing his firearm and firing several shots at the suspect, Skebo said.

The suspect, who was not hit, ran across Courthouse Road in the direction of Mill Garden South subdivision. Deputies were already responding to the reported robbery attempt when the suspect called 911 and reported being shot at while at the ATM.

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Saturday, October 23, 2021

ND: Domestic Defense, Man Shoots Randell Ray Burton, who broke into Woman's Apt.

Burton broke into the home moments before Kester shot him with a revolver, Jahner said. The apartment belonged to a woman who shared an “on again, off again” relationship with Burton, according to court documents that detailed domestic violence and terrorizing charges against Burton.

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VA: Armed Man Shoots Suspect who Attacked him with a Knife

When officers arrived on the scene, they located a man suffering from an apparent gunshot wound.

Following a preliminary investigation, officers determined the incident happened in a parking lot between a Wawa and a Harris Teeter. Neither store would comment, nor would Virginia Beach police except for a basic narrative on what happened.

Police say the suspect approached the victim and lunged at him with a knife. The victim, who possesses a concealed carry permit and was armed, shot the suspect.

Scanner traffic said after the shooting, the man put his gun in his truck.

The man who had the knife was transported to a local hospital for treatment.

More Here

Friday, October 22, 2021

NE: Employee uses Shotgun to Stop Active Shooter

A man fired from a south central Nebraska grain complex Thursday returned to the facility and started shooting at his former colleagues killing two, and injuring on others according to the Nebraska State Patrol.

The gunman, identified as Max Hoskinson, 61, was shot and killed by another employee of the Agrex facility in Superior, Nebraska.

More Here

Thursday, October 21, 2021

Pennsylvania Federal Judge Enforces Second Amendment in Zoning Case

 


 

In a significant win for supporters of Second Amendment rights, the United States District Court for the Western District of Pennsylvania granted a preliminary injunction order to William Drummond and the Second Amendment Foundation, Inc. on October 13, 2021. 

Drummond had sought to open a sportsmans club at an existing range which had operated as the Greater Pittsburgh Gun Club since the middle 1960's. It consists of 265 acres in Robinson Township, Washington County, Pennsylvania. 

In December of 2017, Drummond entered into a lease to operate the club. On February 19, 2018, the Robinson Township Board of Supervisors commenced proceedings to deny Drummond the ability to operate the range, through a change in the zoning ordinance.

The Board denied Drummond's application for a zoning permit to operate the club. The lawsuit was brought by Drummond, with the aid of the Second Amendment Foundation, the zoning ordinance violated Drummond's Second Amendment Rights. 

The District Court dissmissed the lawsuit in January of 2019. The case was appealed to the Third Circuit Court of Appeals. The Third Circuit vacated the District Court's dismissal and sent the case back, based on the violation of the Second Amendment by the zoning ordinance. 

One of the findings of the court seems of particular significance. From the order:

Although the health, safety, and welfare are substantial government interests, the Township must provide some evidence of how the amendments to the Zoning Ordinance serve those substantial government interests. The government must “persuade us that ‘the recited harms are real, not merely conjectural, and that the regulation will in fact alleviate these harms in a direct and material way.’”

 Although the case took most of four years to resolve, this is a very significant win. Those who want to restrict Second Amendment rights must show real evidence of harm, not just a generic "health, safety, and welfare" claim. They must also show how their law or regulation will actually alleviate the harm. That is very difficult to do for Second Amendment rights. 

Judge Marilyn J. Horan, the United States District Judge, did as she was required to do. She issued the injunction. From the Preliminary Injunction Order:

Based on the foregoing findings of fact and conclusions of law, Plaintiffs’ Preliminary Injunction is hereby GRANTED as follows:

Defendants, their officers, agents, servants, employees, and all persons in active concert or participation with them who receive actual notice of the injunction are enjoined from enforcing Robinson Township Zoning Ordinance Sections 311(D), 601, and 208, Table 208(A).

The township may try to continue the case, but it seems unlikely. Another case, in a Pennsylvania state Commonwealth Court reached a similar conclusion in a separate case brought in Monroe County in May of 2021. 

Federal courts in the Third Circuit and the Pennsylvania state courts are now in agreement. You cannot use zoning ordinances to shut down gun ranges simply because you do not like them. That violates the Second Amendment and is not allowed under the rule of law.

©2021 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

Gun Watch





OR: Eugene Apt Resident Calls 911, Shoots Intruder

EUGENE, Ore. -- An alleged burglar was shot and killed after entering a south Eugene apartment early Monday morning, Eugene police said.

The Eugene Police Department responded to reports of a burglary in progress around 3:40 a.m. at South Crest Apartments on Donald Street. According to officials, neighbors called 911 to report gunfire before patrol officers were able to arrive on scene.


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Wednesday, October 20, 2021

PA: Armed Samaritan Shoots 16-Year-Old who Fired Shots in Mall, Police Investigate

Police said an armed bystander who was in another store and wasn’t involved in the fight heard the shots and then shot one of the people struggling over the gun -- apparently the 16-year-old who initiated the shooting. Police said the 16-year-old was hospitalized for a non-life-threatening gunshot injury.

Police said the armed bystander waited for police to arrive and turned over his weapon. Police said the county district attorney will decide if the bystanders’ actions were legal and justified.


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Tuesday, October 19, 2021

CA: Persistent Intruder Shot, Killed, While Attacking New Home Owners

When deputies arrived, two men in the front of the home said that an unknown man, later identified as 28-year-old Lennin Elizalde, had kicked down the front door and began assaulting them. One of the men then told deputies that he had shot the intruder in self-defense.

Elizalde was declared dead at the scene, the sheriff’s office said.

During the investigation, deputies found that Elizalde had been arrested the day before for breaking into that same home.


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GA: Female Robbery Suspect Shot During Disarm inside Vehicle

Georgia police on Wednesday identified a dead female robbery suspect who allegedly tried to rob two men at gunpoint inside a vehicle but was shot and killed by her own gun during a struggle.

The Warner Robins Police Department said its officers were dispatched at 12:30 a.m. Sunday to the 100 block of Fred Drive and found 21-year-old Kyndal Reynolds with a gunshot wound. Reynolds was transported to Houston Medical Center, where she died.

 Reynolds and another woman, 42-year-old Tywana Antonette Cody, met two men earlier in the night. While all four were together inside a vehicle, Reynolds "attempted to rob the male companions," police said. Investigators believe one of the men attempted to disarm her, and Reynolds was shot with her own weapon during a struggle.

More Here

Monday, October 18, 2021

GA: Armed Resident Defends Disabled Resident from Knife Wielding Intruder


Investigators tell FOX 5 just after 11 p.m. Wednesday the suspect busted into the Dahlia Avenue house. After entering through the window, police say the alleged home invader grabbed two kitchen knives. He then allegedly went into another room and tried to stab a resident who uses a wheelchair.

Another resident opened fire on the suspect, shooting him in the stomach and arm. The suspect was found nearby by officers. Paramedics rushed the injured home invasion suspect to Grady Memorial Hospital. He underwent surgery and was in stable condition as of late Thursday morning.

More Here

Sunday, October 17, 2021

Kyle Rittenhouse hearing 5 October 2021, Expert Witness, Possession of Weapons

 

Top from left of frame: Corey Chirafisi, defense attorney; John Black, expert on reasonable force and video analysis;Karen Howell, Court Reporter

Bottom from left of frame: Bob Willis, prosecution expert witness; Kimberley Motley, representing Gaige Grosskruetz; View of courtroom from Judge Schroeder's bench, left side prosecutor Binger, right side defense attorney Richards.


 

The video of part 1 is a few seconds short of one hour and fifty minutes. Part 2 is another hour and twelve minutes.

The Kyle Rittenhouse hearing on October 5th was primarily about expert witnesses and the motion by the defense to dismiss the charge against Kyle Rittenhouse of illegal possession of a dangerous weapon by a minor. 

A technical term for determining the suitability of expert witnesses is a Daubert hearing.

Judge Schroeder started the hearing by noting there is no report from the prosecution's proposed expert witness, even though he spent some time checking for it over the weekend:   

"Over the weekend, I had been checking periodically for the report by Witness Willis, and couldn't find any, so I left a note for the clerk to contact Mr. Binger and see where the report was, and found out for the first time yesterday, that there is no report. 

Do you want to comment on that?" (Directed to DA Binger).

This correspondent has noted Judge Schroeder has carefully, gently, almost subtly, corrected or admonished DA Binger at several times during these proceedings.  

The lead Prosecutor, DA Binger answered with a carefully scripted reply.

Almost all the players in the courtroom appeared to have a heightened awareness they are on camera, they are being recorded, the recording is live and will be a part of a near permanent record available to the public on the Internet. The exception seemed to be Bob Willis. He is the proposed expert witness for the prosecution. He is located in Milwaukee. He is the only one who seems casual and unconcerned about his appearance.

DA Binger did not have a report from the expert witness, Willis. Binger says Willis has been working on it for the last two months.  Binger said it will be ready on October 18th.  His main argument was no expert witnesses are needed, because the jury instructions make clear the jury is to determine if the accused acted as a reasonable person might act in the circumstances. He claimed they do not need expert testimony to make that decision.

Judge Schroeder then quoted from the record of a previous hearing on May 21, 2021.

Judge Schroeder said the pre-trial minutes from May 21 say the defense will have expert witnesses ready by 8-1, including the report. (Directed to DA Binger)

"What does that mean to you?"

Binger: 'It says the defense will be doing that."

Commentary: 

The adversarial relationship which has developed between the prosecution and Judge Schroeder is exposed in this question and response. Ordinarily, prosecutors work hard to cooperate with judges. Here, Judge Schroeder knows this is a Daubert hearing. Everyone knows it. It is a hearing about expert witnesses. Judge Schroeder expects the two sides to be ready, which is why he calls out DA Binger. 

But Binger has a ready response: That date only applied to the defense. The prosecution was not specifically included in that order. He notes he argued for more time, earlier.

This embarrasses Judge Schroeder, something most prosecutors would avoid. Perhaps there is a strategy here. If Binger can goad Judge Schroeder into a mistake, perhaps the prosecution can have the Judge removed from the case. Judge Schroeder has been very careful, very deliberate, very correct. The leftist activists involved have already called for him to be taken off the case because he refuses to make it a political case.

Judge Schroeder is an old pro. He refuses to be provoked. He sees DA Binger is correct, on the record, and he accepts a new date, only a week from trial, for another Daubert hearing for the prosecution's proposed expert witness, Bob Willis. 

Back to the event

There is considerable discussion about expert witnesses. Judge Schroeder said he is leaning toward allowing John Black as an expert witness for the defense. He saaid he learned things from the report Black submitted, which he, as a judge, did not know before.

Judge Schroeder said the Prosecution has used expert witnesses in prior homicide cases in Kenosha.

DA Binger replied those were police involved cases, where the public had to be informed about police rules and training. Binger cited cases where judges have not allowed expert witnesses in homicide trials.

Judge Schroeder gave a little lecture about judicial discretion in allowing evidence in cases. Judges have wide discretion, he explains. He reminded the prosecution that one judge is not bound by the decisions of another judge in another case; that even the same judge in the same case can change his mind and allow evidence which was previously excluded.

Judge Schroeder: "The judge has enormous discretion on the evidence."

"What Judge Wagner did in an particular case, a ways back, I have no knowledge, is absolutely no precedent for me."

Defense Attorney Richards explained why an expert witness will be useful to the jury in this case.

Judge Schroeder summed up his decision on the expert testimony.

"I am going to open the door to the testimony of Dr. Black. After I hear the presentation by the State, then also to evidence of Mr. Willis when I have more information about it and then I will see what can come in and what cannot."

DA Binger said some of the witnesses for the prosecution have expressed concerns and have received threats. 

He asked that photos and video of witnesses be limited. He asked that photographs or images of witnesses be limited. 

Defense Attorney Richards said he does not know who DA Binger is talking to. He said he does not have much of an opinion on this, but would not want masks on witnesses. 

Judge Schroeder said it would have to be witness specific. The level of comfort of the witness is not the test which will be applied.

The hearing moved to the subject of the defense motion to dismiss the charge of illegal possession of a dangerous weapon by a minor. Judge Schroeder noted it is a "difficult" statute.

Defense Attorney Corey Chirafski did a fair explanation of the somewhat complicated statute. 

He glossed over the exception which eliminates the restrictions for people under age of 18 for ordinary rifles and shotguns. This exception applies to the definition of what are "dangerous weapons" for people under the are of 18. Ordinary rifles and shotguns are not dangerous weapons under the statue.

He explained the parts about hunting do not apply to 17 year old people; that Kyle was 17 at the time, so it does not apply to him. In any case, he was not hunting.

DA Binger claimed the exception in 948.60 3(C) only applies to hunting. He claimed that is the intent of the legislature. But the statute says no such thing.

Defense Attorney Richards offered to supply more legislative history, but he is not sure it will be helpful. Judge Schroeder agreed to look at it and make another decision later.

Judge Schroeder decided he is going to to deny the motion to dismiss the firearms charge for now. He wanted to give more study to this.  He wanted to look at legislative history. For now, motion denied.

Commentary: 

Judge Schroeder stated that people are supposed to be able to read the law and understand it. He said if highly trained and experienced lawyers are having a difficult time understanding the law, then how can ordinary people be expected be understand it? He referenced a potential appeals court. He seems to be concerned the law might be ruled too vague to be constitutional. This correspondent fails to see how the attorneys and the judge can ignore the exception in 948.60 3(C) which exempts rifles and shotguns from the definition of dangerous weapons. The exception is not limited to hunting or to the restrictions in chapter 29. This deserves treatment in a separate article.

The court then heard testimony form Dr. John Black as to his suitability as an expert witness.  This testimony took over an hour for the questioning by the defense. Dr. Black is shown to be eminently qualified, knowledgeable, and very careful in his responses. He showed clear reasons why a person in Kyle Rittenhouse' position would have believed it reasonable to use deadly force to protect his life and/or bodily integrity.

The court then took a break. It is the end of the part 1 video. The part 2 video is 1 hour and 12 minutes long. It shows the part of the hearing held after the break. Almost the entire part 2 deals with the testimony of Dr. Black.


Part 2 of the video starts with the cross examination of Dr. John Black. There is an attempt by the prosecution to show Dr. Black's expertise is only for the use of force by police. The prosecution tries to have Dr. Black agree with certain propositions the prosecution puts forward. Dry Black is a pro, he evades the traps. 

The prosecution tries to have Dr. Black agree that Joseph Rosenbaum was unarmed on the night of 25 October, 2020. Defense Attorney Richards raises an objection, claiming Rosenbaum was armed at some point. 

Dr. Black states he only knows, in the videos he watched, he did not see obvious arms possessed by Rosenbaum. There might have been weapons which he did not observe.

DA Binger argues that skateboards are not weapons, and Huber's use of the skateboard was not as a weapon. 

In later rebuttal, Defense Attorney Richards clarifies with Dr. Black that skateboards can be used effectively as deadly weapons.

 Commentary:

The defense is likely to bring up, at trial, videos exist online, to train people how to use skateboards as weapons, particularly at demonstrations. This site includes a video of a person using a skateboard to smash the rear window of a police car. 

Here is another case where a skateboard was used as a weapon. 

The hearing went reasonably well. While no definitive decisions were made about expert testimony, Judge Schroeder signaled he is likely to allow Dr. Black's testimony. Judge Schroeder denied the motion to dismiss the weapons charge at this point, but indicates the statute is not clear and he is open to additional input from the defense attorneys.

©2021 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

Gun Watch

TX: Road Rage, in Houston; Man shoots Driver who Threatened him with a Crowbar

HSCO Lt. Paul Bruce said it appears the two men were driving in the area when one person cut off the other. He said the driver who was cut off got out of his vehicle with a crowbar in hand. 

That's when the gunman fired once, and the other man started hitting the shooter's truck with the crowbar, deputies said. Bruce said the shooter then fired at the man, grazing him in the forehead and hand. 

The shooter then left the scene fearing for his life, and according to deputies, called 911 when he was a few blocks away.

More Here

Saturday, October 16, 2021

AZ: Suspect Accused of Attack on Deputy Shot by Homeowner

TONOPAH, Ariz. — A suspect accused of critically injuring a Maricopa County Sheriff's deputy in Avondale was shot Saturday night. 

Officials said that 30-year-old Clinton Hurley was shot by a homeowner around 6:30 p.m. when he attempted to enter a home near Buckeye and Wintersburg roads in Tonopah. He was airlifted to the hospital after the shooting where he is in critical condition.

Hurley and the homeowner had a "history" and gunfire was exchanged, according to Maricopa County Sheriff Paul Penzone. 

Hurley was wanted by law enforcement after a sheriff's office deputy was found unconscious and bleeding allegedly after an altercation with him on Saturday morning.

More Here

Friday, October 15, 2021

IN: Woman Shoots, Kills Armed Intruder who Claimed to be Police


Home in Anderson where shooting took place


On September 27, 2021, a little after midnight, in Anderson, Indiana, surveillance cameras captured a man lurking around a home on a quiet residential street. 

The address on 8th Street is not far from the university and the police station. The man, later identified as Jeffrey Flowers, was not content to lurk and look in windows. It has been reported he broke into the house through the back door. 

On Fox59.com, prosecutor Cummings states the recordings reveal Flowers pretended to be a police officer. He demanded to know the location of a woman, saying "Where is she?!" and "Where is the money?!". Cummings described the man as wearing a mask over his face.

The resident of the house, a woman, saw Flowers breaking into her home. Police say she retreated to an upstairs bedroom and accessed a firearm. It was reported Flowers threatened to start shooting. Instead, the woman shot and killed him. 

 From fox59.com:

ANDERSON, Ind. — An Anderson woman shot and killed a man suspected of breaking into her home overnight.

911 dispatchers received a call from a female homeowner in the 1300 block of E. 8th Street around 12:47 a.m. The woman told police there was a break-in at the home, and she shot the suspected burglar.

By the time police arrived, they found the alleged suspect dead in an upstairs bedroom.

With home surveillance cameras rolling, prosecutors insist a man forced his way into the woman’s home.

“Neighbors had videos of him parking in front of the residence and looking through windows, ultimately breaking through the door and pulling a weapon out,” said Madison County Prosecutor Rodney Cummings.

Prosecutor Cummings says the suspect could also be heard on video asking for money and pretending to be law enforcement.

After the shooting, the woman ran from the house seeking help from neighbors. The neighbors described what they observed to a reporter. From wthr.com:

ANDERSON, Ind. — Neighbors in Anderson say a woman was going door to door in the middle of the night asking for help after she shot and killed a man who broke into her home early Wednesday.

"There was somebody screaming, 'Help me, help me! Please call the police!'" said Amari Lewis.

Lewis and Caitlin Knox woke up to their doorbell ringing over and over and their neighbor from across the street desperate for help. 

"She was very scared and frantic. She didn't want to go to jail. She wanted to make sure her kids were OK," Lewis said.

No toxicology reports have been released. The neighbors reported the woman said she did not know Flowers. This may be a case of the wrong address and/or the influence of drugs. This correspondent has read of many cases where people on meth, alcohol, or other drugs have committed stupid and dangerous crimes under the influence. 

Prosecutor Rodney Cummings illustrated the changing attitude toward defense of self and others, especially in your own home. From fox59.com:

“In your home is probably the most protected place you can be,” said Cummings. “If you’re breaking into someone’s home in the middle of the night, if you don’t get shot or killed you should feel fortunate.”

A defender who forces the attacker to come to them has many advantages. They can be behind cover. They have the advantage of surprise, where the aggressor has to look for and locate them. Legally, when you have retreated to a defensible position, it strengthens their case for self defense.

As nations around the world have trended toward authoritarian, the United States stands out as one where defense of home, one's self, and others, is enshrined in law and the public mind as morally just and acceptable. 

The investigation in Anderson will continue. The purpose should be to insure the initial impressions are consistent with the physical evidence and personal history of those involved. 

©2021 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

Gun Watch

MD: Homeowner Shoots, Kills Intruder who Broke into Home


A homeowner in Poolesville fatally shot a man inside his home Monday morning as he was on the phone with 911 reporting a burglary, Montgomery County police said.


Around 9 a.m., the homeowner called the county’s Emergency Communications Center (ECC) to report that a man was trying to break into his home in the 18000 block of River Road, which runs through Montgomery’s relatively spread-out western area.

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IA: Bail Jumper Arrest by Bondsman turns Violent

CEDAR RAPIDS, Iowa (KWWL) - Cedar Rapids Police are reporting that a man being taken into custody was shot by a bail bondsman as he was attempting to escape, and also hit a bondsman with his car.

Around 4:50 p.m. Friday, two bail bondsman were attempting to take 40-year-old Richard Hamilton Jr. into custody near the Dairy Queen at Wilson Ave. and Bowling St. SW.

More Here

Thursday, October 14, 2021

Grizzly Attack on Moose Hunters Found with FOIA Request


 

This is one of a series of detailed accounts of bear attacks found with Freedom of Information Act (FOIA) requests by AmmoLand. The author believes this is the first publication of this account.

On September 7, 2010 a pair of out of state archery hunters were stalking moose in a remote part of Wyoming out of Pinedale. The area is known as Horse Creek. They were attacked by a large boar grizzly bear. Fortunately, they were able to shoot the bear and stop the attack.

In the morning, one of their guides had been scouting the area. He had seen two bull moose and what he thought was a large black bear. When he told the hunters about the moose and the bear, the guide mentioned he had a black bear tag. He asked the archery hunters if they would mind him taking a gun along in case they saw a black bear to be harvested. The gun belonged to the lead guide.

The gun was a Marlin lever action rifle chambered in .450 Marlin, sporting iron sights. It was loaded with four rounds of ammunition. It is not clear if the guide carried any additional rounds. It was reported the lead guide took the rifle from a saddle scabbard and handed it to the guide.

The hunters were able to spot two moose, one of which was a bull. They proceeded to stalk the bull. They stalked to withing 60 yards, but the wind changed, the bull winded them, and walked away through the burned out timber. They decided to go back to the horses to see if they could get downwind of the moose for another try.  It was about 2 p.m.

As they cautiously worked their way through the dense cover, they passed near where the guide had seen the bear. They did not see the bear. Suddenly, the guide heard a roar and turned to see a bear charging from his left, very fast and very close. From the report: 

I hear a big roar. As I looked I saw a bear charging, he was coming very fast and was very close.  I acted all on instinct and knew I only had 1 chance. I shouldered my rifle and shot at the bear which was way close, probably 10 feet. My bullet hit him and he sorta rolled but was still clearly alive and moving so I shot again. I had backed up 3 to 4 steps and he was still wanting to get up so I placed my shot in the neck.

The lead guide reported he was shouting "Hit him again!" after the first shot, then "Hit him again! after the second shot.  The attack was stopped.



The adrenaline aftermath set in. The guide who shot had kept his calm as the attack occurred. Shortly after, he felt nauseous; his legs started to shake so much, he had to sit down. 

Many hunters have experienced variations of this. In Wisconsin, it is called "buck fever". This correspondent recalls similar reactions after shooting his first buck.

When they saw the dead bear, they discovered it was a grizzly. This immediately changed their plans. The lead guide, who owned the rifle, told everyone not to touch anything. He told them not to even take a picture. (This correspondent believes taking pictures is a good idea, to preserve evidence) They left the area to return to where they had cell phone coverage. They reported the incident to the Wyoming Game and Fish office in Pindale, Wyoming. The Game and Fish officer was able to receive the report less than two hours after the attack.

The next day two wardens came out to investigate the incident. They accompanied the lead guide back to the location of the attack. They investigated the area, took pictures, and performed a field assessment of the gunshot wounds. They found two bear day-beds 45 feet from where the men were attacked. 

 


Two cartridge cases were recovered. It wasn't clear if the third case had been ejected. The bear had been hit with all three shots. The first shot hit the bear in the back over the top of the head, about two inches right side of the spine. The second shot hit the bear in the middle, about six inches down from the spine. The third shot hit the bear in the neck, from the side. The bear was in good condition with about three inches of fat over the rump.

The wardens interviewed the hunters separately. One of the hunters had bear spray in a fanny pack. The fanny pack had been left with the horses. 

Given the speed of the encounter, it was unlikely a hunter would have been able to drop a bow and access bear spray from a fanny pack in time to be of use. 

The hunters all agreed to give written statements to the wardens for their investigation.

The physical evidence and the written statements were consistent with the verbal account. The wardens secured the bear head and four paws as evidence.

A report of the incident was forwarded to the the US Fish and Wildlife service.

On September 27, 2010, a letter of declination to prosecute was signed by the Assistant United States Attorney, Darrell L. Fun, because  no crime had been committed. The letter was sent to the Fish & Wildlife Service in Lander, Wyoming. 

It is not clear when, if ever, the hunters and guides were informed of the decision.

Both guides noted it was fortunate they had decided to take the rifle with them.

This points out the advantage of a pistol over a rifle. Pistols are designed to be worn on the person. A pistol you have with you is far superior to a rifle left in a scabbard.

Pistols can be very effective in such scenarios as this. It is a very similar attack to what happened in Alaska in 2018, when Jimmy Cox stopped a charging grizzly with a 10mm Glock at 10 feet.

©2021 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

Gun Watch


LA: Armed Woman Shot Back at Armed Robber, Wounded Him

A man who robbed and shot at a woman who was selling him an Xbox fled and was arrested after she managed to wound him with her own gun, Baton Rouge police say.

Police issued an arrest warrant for 20-year-old Dane Johnson on Sept. 29, the day after the shooting. He was booked Wednesday evening on counts of attempted murder and armed robbery.

Authorities responded to a report of a shooting at Willow Bend Apartments, 11070 Mead Road, around 8:10 p.m. on Sept. 28, according to the affidavit. Upon arrival, they found shell casings and the victim inside her home.


More Here

GA: Homeowner Shoots Intruder During Confrontation, is Wounded during Altercation

UPDATE: Homicide detectives were able to determine that the surviving victim was the homeowner at the residence. The investigation found that the decedent entered the home through a window and then attacked the homeowner when confronted. The homeowner shot the decedent. The homeowner sustained also sustained a gunshot after shooting himself accidentally during the incident. The homeowner remained at the scene and was cooperative with the investigation. No charges are anticipated in this case.


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GA: Domestic Defense; Father shoots Daughter's Boyfriend to Stop Attack

The Habersahan Sheriff's Office reports 55-year-old Corey Merchant shot 26-Year-old Justin Rachal to stop an attack on Merchant's daughter. There were significant injuries to the daughter. After the initial investigation, charges were dropped against Corey as the shooting appeared to be justified in defense of his daughter.

 

More Here

Wednesday, October 13, 2021

NICS September, 2021, Gun Sales Continue Trend to Second Highest Year

 
In the continuing trend for gun sales measured by the National Instant background Check System, (NICS), September 2020 was the second highest in the history of NICS, coming in behind last years record number of about 1.61 million. September of 2021 had about 1.31 million gun sales recorded.

In 2019 the gun sales were less than a million, about 974 thousand guns sold in September. 

The number of gun sales traditionally picks up in September as hunting seasons are opening and approaching. This probably accounts for the converging numbers of handgun and long gun sales.
 
Handgun sales were about 681 thousand, long gun sales were 515 thousand. There were about 57 thousand "other" sales. "Other" can be anything from an unassembled receiver which could be made into either a handgun or a long gun, or a generic "firearm" such as the Mossberg Shockwave. There were about 24 thousand sales with multiple firearms on one form.

In the formulation to estimate total sales, this correspondent assumes 2.5 firearms per multiple sale.

Uncertainty in the world, in the federal government, concerns about the ongoing COVID19 pandemic and lack of trust in governmental institutions all are likely contributing to the ongoing demand for firearms in the United States of America.

The United States stands out, with the Second Amendment, as one of very few countries where the right to keep and bear arms has not been denigrated and emasculated to a mere privilige, doled out to those who the local government trusts and is willing to allow to be armed.
 
Even 35 years ago, it was simple and relatively easy for Australians and Canadians to obtain rifles and shotguns, with almost no restrictions. The same could be said for Costa Rica and Switzerland. Politicians in England started distrusting their people after World War I, fearing a Bolshevic style revolution. The contagion spread to the rest of the world.
 
With the first three quarters of 2021 in the bag, the trend is for 19 million gun sales to be recorded in the NICS system by the end of the year. That would mean about 481 million private firearms in the United States, up from about 308 million private firearms at the start of President Obama's first term in 2009.

The limitations on sales in the United States appear to be limitations imposed by industrial capacity to produce arms and ammunition, rather than by demand. Prices continue to be high, with few arms sold below retail. 

Ammunition may be the most critical factor. It is much easier to start manufacturing firearms than to start a major ammunition manufacturing plant. Ammunition is not difficult to make a few rounds at a time in a home workshop; it is much harder to make safely in a mass manufacturing plant which can compete, even at today's inflated prices.
If a person cannot find ammunition available, they very likely will delay purchasing a firearm. As Rudyard Kipling wrote in Kim:
 
Of what use is a gun unfed?
 

Record numbers of Americans fear a second Civil War. Record numbers consider a break-up of the United States a possibility. 

With those scenarios in mind, the record number of guns being sold in the last two years are easily understandable.

©2021 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

Gun Watch




 
 

OH: Apartment Resident Stops Home Invasion with Gunfire

A suspected intruder was shot and killed during an attempted home invasion at an apartment complex in Gahanna, Ohio, Sunday night, police said.

A resident in the 800 block of Falcon Hunter Way called 911 to report a shooting around 8:31 p.m.

The man reporting the incident told police someone knocked on his door and upon answering it, a man with a gun tried to push his way in. That's when the man living in the apartment said he shot the suspect and observed a second man take off running.

More Here

KS: Homeowner Shoots man who was Breaking Windows

Wichita police report a homeowner shot a man who was breaking the windows on his house.

Officers were called to a home in the 2500 block of East Wilma, near Harry and I-135, around 7 p.m. Monday. Responding officers found a 40-year-old with a gunshot wound, and he was sent to a hospital with critical injuries. As of Tuesday morning, there has not been an update on the man’s condition.

g.

More Here

PA: Domestic Defense? Man Wounded while Attempting to Break in to Woman's Apt.

A man was shot at while attempting to rob an apartment in Harrisburg, according to Swatara Township police.

Lareese Rashshawn Dean, 33, of Harrisburg, was found with a wound to his left arm outside an apartment complex he was attempting to rob on Tuesday, police say.

A shooting was reported at Chestnut Pointe apartment complex located at 3655 Chambers Hill Road at 6:22 p.m.

More Here

Tuesday, October 12, 2021

D.C.: Judge Holds D.C. Government Liable for Violating Second Amendment Rights


 

On 15 May, 2015, a class action lawsuit was filed against the government of the District of Columbia, for violating the constitutional rights of people who had been arrested before the  Wrenn case was decided on July 25, 2021. The lawsuit was brought under the 1983 Civil Rights Act.

There originally were 10 claims. Judge Lambert struck down seven of those claims in May of 2019 in a memorandum and opinion

Three claims, numbers I, III, and VI remained. On September 29, 2021, Judge Lambert granted summary judgement for the plaintiffs on claims I and III, and granted summary judgement for the defendants (the District of Columbia) on claim VI.

Summary judgement for the plaintiffs on claim number I, the Second Amendment reads:

In sum, the plaintiffs were arrested, detained, and had their guns seized under a gun control regime that completely banned carrying handguns in public. That fact is undisputed.

Accordingly, this Court finds that there is no genuine dispute of material fact as to the District's liability on Claim 1. Construing the facts most favorably to the defendants, the District violated the plaintiffs' Second Amendment rights by arresting them, detaining them, prosecuting them, and seizing their guns based on an unconstitutional set of D.C. laws. This Court will GRANT plaintiffs' motion for a partial summary judgement and DENY the District's motion for summary judgement as to liability on Count 1. 

Claim number III, the Fifth Amendment claims, were about equal protection rights and the right to travel. Judge Lambert granted summary judgement for the plaintiffs on these points as well.  From the decision:

B. There is No Genuine Dispute of Material Fact Regarding Plaintiffs Fifth Amendment Claims, and No Reasonable July Could Find for the District

Judge Lambert applies some excellent logic here. In short, the equal protection claims apply because the Second Amendment is a fundamental right, and the District of Columbia treated residents and non-residents very differently. Residents had the potential to obtain a permit, even if difficult. Non-residents did not have that option.

Judge Lambert notes the right to travel applies because non-residents were categorically denied the right to travel with firearms.

Unfortunately, Judge Lambert falls short when analyzing claim number VI, the Fourth Amendment claims.  Judge Lambert writes, on page 18

It is undisputed that basic registration requirements are constitutional. See Wrenn, 864 F.3d at 677 ("[T]raditional limits include, for instance, licensing requirements.")
This is poor analysis. Licensing applies to people. Registration applies to firearms. Your car is registered. You are licensed. Licensing does not lend itself to government confiscation nearly as readily as registration of firearms does. There have been licenses to carry for a considerable period in a considerable number of states. This is not true for registration of firearms, which is far more recent, uncommon, banned by federal law, and by state law in eight states. From Wrenn page 29:

At the Second Amendment's core lies the right of responsible citizens to carry  firearms for personal self-defense beyond the home, subject to longstanding restrictions. These traditional limits include, for instance, licensing requirements, but not bans on carrying in urban areas like D.C.or bans on carrying absent a special need for self-defense.

Registration of guns illegal in several states. It is not certain all the victims of the District of Columbia's unconstitutional gun control scheme could get their property back by showing gun registrations, when registering a gun may be illegal for some members of the class action lawsuit.

The three specific laws mentioned in the class action lawsuit have been repealed. From thehill.com:

The three gun laws that the six plaintiffs were arrested under have all since been repealed.

William Claiborne, the attorney for the six plaintiffs, told The Washington Post that they “are very happy with the ruling, which completely vindicates their claim that they had a constitutional right to carry their handguns in public for self-defense.”

The District of Columbia continues to have some of the most restrictive firearms laws in the nation. Open carry is prohibited outside the home or a place of business, according to The Hill. A license is required to carry at all.  There are numerous "gun free" zones. 

Analysis: the most interesting part of this decision is the precedent that governments can be sued for damages, stemming from infringements of Second Amendment rights under the 1983 Civil Rights act, and those rights are intrinsically wound together with the right to travel and equal protection under the law. 

The decision could be appealed, but it may not be, by the District of Columbia. The Wrenn decision was not appealed. Those who want a disarmed population feared it would be upheld at the Supreme Court, establishing precedent for the nation, instead of merely the District of Columbia. 

The same fear applies in this case, more emphatically, with two new Supreme Court Justices appointed by President Trump, on the Court, since Wrenn. 

©2021 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

Gun Watch

 


 


Monday, October 11, 2021

AL: 93-Year-Old Stops Burglary in Progress, Leading to Arrest of Carreer Criminal

Jordan was charged with second-degree and third-degree burglary, as well as second-degree and third-degree criminal mischief.

He is currently being held in the Covington County jail without bond for probation violation.

The investigation is still ongoing.

“The victim protected himself and his property from a career criminal. The victim was at a disadvantage physically, but his weapon enabled him to protect himself. The investigation revealed that Jordan fled the residence because the homeowner had armed himself. Thank God this had a good ending, and the victim should be commended on his courage and quick thinking,” Turman said.

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WA: Man Shoots 2 of 3 Burglary Suspects

The woman called 911 and the man got a gun and went and spoke to the two men and a woman in his yard, a blotter post said.

The man told police that he fired his weapon after one of the suspects came toward him carrying a handsaw.

When police arrived, they found a 53-year-old female suspect with a gunshot wound to her abdomen. She was taken to Harborview Medical Center for treatment.

A 59-year-old man was arrested at the scene.

More Here

Sunday, October 10, 2021

Two National Firearms Surveys in 2021 Cause Confusion

 

Images of announcements of different 2021 National Firearms Surveys

Two different National Firearms Surveys were completed in 2021. One of them was done by Dr. William English of Georgetown University. He published a draft of his study in July of 2021. This correspondent wrote about the results in a previous article. A different 2021 National Firearms Survey was designed by Deborah Azrael and Matthew Miller, as reported in thehill.com, had preliminary results obtained by the Wall Street Journal

Both surveys are the latest version of previous surveys. The English survey is much larger than the Azrael - Miller survey. 

This correspondent received confirmation of the confusion from Dr. English:

As you surmised, there are two different surveys. The one I ran was separate from and much larger than the one by Azrael and Miller, and it looks like we focused on some different questions. I believe their team has done a version of their survey in a few earlier years as well. It appears that neither of us thought up a more creative name than "2021 National Firearms Survey" to publish our initial results for this year, which has understandably been a source of confusion.

Neither of the 2021 National Firearms Surveys (NFS) have been released, in their full form, with all data, to the public. From the limited information in the draft released by Dr. English and the coverage of the information obtained by The Wall Street Journal, and published in The Hill, it appears the surveys have somewhat different areas of focus.

The English 2021 NFS has much more information about defensive gun uses than does the Azrael and Miller 2021 NFS. Azrael and Miller have much more information about when people purchased firearms. The English survey starts with over 54,000 contacts. The Azrael survey appears to start with over 19,000.

One finding from the English NFS supports a reported finding from the Azrael & Miller NFS. The English NFS shows 42% of gun owners in the United States are female. The Azrael & Miller NFS shows 3.5 million of 7.5 million new gun owners are women, or 47%. It is a reasonably close agreement. 

The 2015 survey done by Asrael, Hepburn, Hemenway, and Miller only showed 27% of gun owners were women, and 73% were men.  The 2015 Survey estimated the percent of gun owners in the United States at 22 percent of adults, which is significantly lower than several other surveys. Both the 2015 survey by Azrael and the 2021 survey by English show an average of 5 firearms per firearm owner.

The much larger 2021 NSF by English shows the percentage of adults owning guns in the United States at 32%. Add in those who own firearms and do not respond to surveys about firearms; the number is almost certainly more than one third.

To determine how far apart the two 2021 National Firearms Surveys are on basic numbers, such as how many firearms are in the United States, and how many people own firearms in the USA, we will have to wait for the release of the full surveys.

When released, their survey questions and methods used to conduct the surveys should be available to the public for comparison. 

Under the Second Amendment of the Bill of Rights, national registration of firearms is illegal in the United States. Several states also make state registration illegal. A small number of states require registration of all firearms, with a few more requiring registration of particular types of firearms. There is no official count of legally owned firearms in the United States.

©2021 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

Gun Watch



 

 


 







SC: No Charges for Sumter Woman who Shot, Killed Intruder

No charges are expected after a Sumter woman shot and killed a man who entered her home and attacked her early Saturday morning. Sumter police said in a Facebook post that Eugene Rhinehart III, 31, was transported to Prisma Health Tuomey Hospital with a gunshot wound, where he later died. Police say Rhinehart entered the woman’s home on Robney Drive around 4:15 a.m. through an unlocked door, and then began punching a 43-year-old woman inside the house.

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Saturday, October 09, 2021

FL:Miami Store Owner Killed, but Fired Back at Armed Robber

“He was carrying with him a lunch bag,” CastaƱeda Jr said. “I believe he used to put money in the lunch bag of what was done that day, how much he accumulated of sales.”

CastaƱeda Jr. says his father fired back but the robber managed to escape quickly with a person waiting in a white sedan.


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OH: Armed Victim is Wounded, Shoots, Kills Assailant

Prior to heading into surgery, the 36-year-old man told investigators the other man had approached him and shot him in the leg. The man, who police say is a CCW permit holder, fired shots in return, fatally wounding the man. 

Police recovered two handguns at the scene. The investigation is ongoing, but there have been no charges filed at this time. Police have not yet identified the suspect. 

More Here

Friday, October 08, 2021

WI: Judge in Rittenhouse Case Denies Prosecution and Defense Motions

 Rittenhouse hearing in Kenosha, Wisconsin, September 17, 2021

 

On August 25, 2020, Kyle Rittenhouse was at the scene of the Kenosha riots. In the next few hours, he scrubbed grafitti, offered first aid, was threatened, was attacked, and shot three people in claimed self defense. The situation has been covered in depth at AmmoLand. A good summation of the actions that night are here. Kyle was charged by local prosecutors in spite of voluminous video evidence of his legitimate self defense claims. Eventually supporters raised two million dollars for bond in Wisconsin.

On Friday, September 17, 2021, there was an evidentiary hearing in Kenosha, about what will be allowed as evidence in the trial of Kyle Rittenhouse. Jury selection is scheduled to start on November 1, 2021. The hearing may be seen on YouTube. The video is two hours and 36 minutes long.

Youtube link to video

The hearing was held by the Honorable Judge Bruce E. Schroeder. The view seen is from the bench. Seated at the table on the left of the screen  are the prosecutors.  DA Thomas Binger is in the blue suit, wearing glasses. On the right of the screen is the defense table. Defense attorney Mark Richards is on the aisle side of the table in the black or very dark blue suit; defense attorney Corey Chiriafsi is in the grey suit in the center of the table; defendant Kyle Rittenhouse is on the far side from Richards in a blue suit.

Judge Schroeder is considering several motions for evidence to be admissible at  trial by prosecutors and defense. Both sides have presented their arguments to the Judge, in writing, before this hearing.

On video, both sides give a preview of what their case will look like at trial. Several facts are mentioned which this correspondent has not seen in previous coverage.

DA Binger  attempts to show Kyle Rittenhouse as a "teen-age vigilante" with a pre-disposition to shoot people. Binger claims Rittenhouse is from outside the community, and came looking for trouble. Binger claims Rittenhouse was "armed with an illegal weapon." 

Defense attorney Mark Richards counters with statements Kyle had a job in Kenosha as a lifeguard, and Kyle's father lives in Kenosha. Richards says he has not found any evidence, after an intense search, that Rittenhouse had any interest in or knowledge of militias or any racist organizations.  Richards:

"All three of these people shot were chasing Kyle Rittenhouse. All of them. That is not debatable."

The prosecution wants to include a fight between Kyle's sister and another girl, which happened 2 months before the Kenosha riots, where Kyle stepped in on the side of his sister. The defense says:

"The probative value of this is substantially outweighed by its prejudicial value."
Judge Schroeder: 

"No connection to these two events at all." 
Judge Schroeder denies the  prosecution is the use of the event in court.

The next motion is about evidence of an event after Kyle is released on bond. 

Rittenhouse goes to a bar to celebrate. At the bar are members of the Proud Boys in Wisconsin. This is four months after the events of August 25. The prosecution attempts to claim this association has some bearing on the state of mind of Kyle Rittenhouse, four months earlier.  The prosecution claims the Proud Boys is a far right, racist, violent organization, based on a newspaper article.  Judge Schroeder makes extensive comments about the situation. Here are some:

"I don't think it is for the court, except in most appropriate circumstances, to be making determinations, and certainly not on the basis of an article in a newspaper in Seattle, about what an organization is." 

"It is an unfortunate fact that this case has become a surrogate for a lot of emotional reaction that has nothing to do or little to do or nothing to do with the issues of the case, but if then the accused is ensconced, which can send him to prison for life, and he encounters some people who embrace him and start to, can we take pictures with you and somehow make him feel better about himself; and he reacts by smiling with them and taking some pictures; for me to let that in as evidence, of a motive that existed, four months earlier? Can't see it. Absolutely not. I would expect to be reversed if I did that."
"I am not interested in these accusations about group responsibility, unless it is directly connected that the defendant is active in the criminal enterprises of the organization."

"Pope Benedict was a member of the NAZI youth, because he had to be. This type of evidence is very dangerous. You make some points that might be legitimate. I certainly will keep the door open, if you can show that there was any connection between the defendant on the day in question and this organization."

Judge Schroeder's use of "on the day in question" refers to the events of August 25, 2020. 

The defense wishes to enter evidence the first man shot by Kyle, Joseph Rosenbaum, was a convicted felon. Mark Richards claims Rosenbaum had a motive to steal the rifle Kyle Rittenhouse was carrying because he could not obtain one legally. The defense mentions Rosenbaum was heard saying (in evidence revealed by discovery from the prosecution) "I just got out of jail, and I am not afraid to go back."  

Judge Schroeder found this of interest. DA Binger denied the statement is decipherable. 

Judge Schroeder refused to allow the evidence of Rosenbaum being a convicted felon to be entered at the trial.

The prosecution did not endear itself to Judge Schroeder over the issue of a list of witnesses, which the defense is entitled to, as a matter of law.

The prosecution provided a potential witness list of 175 witnesses to the defense.  The defense complained it was too many witnesses, citing precedent. The Judge agreed. The prosecution narrowed the list to 27 possible witnesses. The prosecution did not provide the addresses of the witnesses. The prosecution does not want to make a public filing in court, to avoid witness intimidation.

Judge Schroeder asks defense attorney Mark Richards if he was satisfied. Richards says he could deal with 27 witnesses, but he says, the prosecution had not provided the addresses. Then defense attorney Richards states:

I was told by Mr. Binger, they are in discovery, find them.

Judge Schroeder to DA Binger: Is that true? 

DA Binger:

I emailed Mr. Richards yesterday. I gave him a narrowed down list, I said the addresses that we would be providing to him would require us to go through the same 400 plus pages of police report...

Judge Schroeder: (interrupting) What does the statute say?

DA Binger:

The statute does requires us to provide addresses in a written filing with the court. 

Judge: (Interrupting)  Well, I can expect that will be done by Monday at five. 

DA Binger: Would you like us to file with the court? 

Judge Schroeder: 

 I understand your desire to keep this from being filed. If the defense objects, we can discuss about it. No, you can do what you did, but you need  to send to him the addresses. 
By five o'clock, Monday.
The prosecution wants the defense to provide lists of people who had donated to Kyles defense fund. Judge Schroeder says he does not have the authority to order a third party to provide a list to the defense to give to the prosecution.  

The motion was denied.

There was some discussion of expert witnesses, which was deferred to later.

The prosecution wished to have admitted, as evidence, video of Kyle Rittenhouse, two weeks before the riots in Kenosha, commenting on watching people loot a CVS in Chicago. Defense Attorney Corey Chirafisi, reiterates Rittenhouse took no action, it was merely words, and should not be admitted.

At about 1:47 on the hearing video, DA Binger makes a startling revelation. He says Rittenhouse does take an action at the CVS looting. Rittenhouse calls 911. From DA Binger: 

"There is an actual action he takes at the CVS incident, and that is, he does call 911, using his personal cell phone."

At about 1:50 in the hearing video, Judge Schroeder, after the prosecution finishes, says: "I think I heard now, for the first time, that he called 911."

That neither the Judge or the defense team knew this before is amazing. All prosecution evidence should have been made available to the defense team long ago.

 Judge Schroeder says, in differentiating the two incidents, about Kenosha, "you could call 911 all you wanted, there was no law and order. "

DA Binger continues his attempts to justify including the CVS incident as evidence at the trial. Then DA Binger makes revealing comments about the rifle Rittenhouse was carrying.

At about 1:59, Binger talks about the rifle. To this correspondent, Binger seems to be making the case for the defense.  It is difficult to see this as a prosecution argument.

DA Binger:

"He was running around with a assault rifle type weapon, a very threatening,  aggressive weapon. One that deters people, it is designed to deter people. It is designed to threaten others; to let them know, don't mess with me, look what I've got.  Other people that night are carrying around semi-automatic pistols, Glocks, which you can conceal and hide. Other people can't see it.  It is not designed to tell people to go away. It is not designed to tell people to leave me alone. You carry around an assault rifle like this you are sending that message to other people. That is what the defendant was doing."

The defense picks up the revelation that Kyle called 911 at the CVS incident.

At about 2:02 Defense attorney Chirafisi: 

"I was unaware that Mr. Rittenhouse had actually called the authorities on the August 10th date."

Binger continues to try to convince Judge Schroeder the CVS video should be included as evidence.

At about 2:06 in the video, DA Binger states the FBI made an infrared video from an orbiting plane which shows Rittenhouse running after Mr. Rosenbaum.  Binger says the defense was made aware of the video on 3 May, but he does not believe defense attorney Richards has seen it.

Binger claims there was a confrontation between Rittenhouse and Rosebaum, He claims Rittenhouse was chasing Rosenbaum. The defense has not seen this FBI infrared video.

Judge Schroeder says the events are too dissimilar for the CVS incident to be included as evidence, but he will not make a final decision at this time, pending seeing the video evidence, which he has not viewed.

The Prosecution then makes a claim about a defense motion to dismiss the charge of illegal possession of a firearm by a minor. The defense is probably calling the attention of the judge to the structure of Wisconsin statute 948.60, with regard to possession of rifles and shotguns by minors.

To this correspondent, DA Binger appears to misstate the statutory law.

DA Binger appears to ignore Wisconsin statute 948.60 (3)(c), which excludes most firearms from the law. 

Judge Schroeder agrees to send the brief by the prosecution, about the firearms possession issue from the Dominick Black case, to the Rittenhouse defense team, which has not seen it before.

Judge Schroeder says he will take the issue of legal possession of the firearm under advisement. He has not considered it in either the Rittenhouse or Black cases, as of September 17th, 2021.

Judge Schroeder has required DA Binger to read or refer to statutes at least twice at other points in this case.

Many have wondered if Dominick Black would be charged with the straw purchase of the rifle, under federal law.

Earlier, DA Binger noted Kyle Rittenhouse's access to the rifle was limited. It was stored in Wisconsin. Rittenhouse had only shot the rifle one time prior to August 25, 2020. 

This makes federal prosecution of Dominick Black for a straw purchase of the rifle unlikely, as the rifle was never permanently transferred to Kyle Rittenhouse. It is permissible to loan a rifle for a limited time and purpose, without transferring it through a federally licensed dealer.

Both the prosecution and defense agreed they would be ready for a November 1 start of trial. 

There is an issue about the use of questionnaires for jury selection. 

 The judge states he did not like to use questionnaires during jury selection. Judge Schroeder said no questions will be allowed about gun ownership, gun possession, or membership in a particular organization.

He said: "This is not a political trial, it is not going to be a political trial."

Both the defense and prosecutors want to use questionnaires for jury selection.

Because both prosecution and defense attorneys want questionnaires, the Judge Schroeder said he will take the use of questionnaires under advisement. 

Judge Schroeder makes comments on media coverage of the Rittenhouse case:

"There has been some grossly irresponsible misreporting on a few occasions about what happened in this case."

 "The case should not be tried in the media."

If you are following the case closely, it is worth taking the time to watch the entire two hour and 36 minute hearing. 

Coverage by other national media was extremely limited. There is much detail in the video. It would require tens of thousands of words to completely cover it in a written article.

©2021 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice and link are included.

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