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Newslinks for 10/3/2013

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NY: Rome teen faces charges for shooting airsoft gun on his own property
Submitted by: none

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Three weeks later, a Rome Police Officer showed up at her door.

"Expressing to me that he really wasn't sure why he was at my home. That he thought it was all very silly but that a couple of people above him were pushing for a charge," says Oshel.

About a week later, she was told to bring her son into court to face an unlawful possession of a weapon charge.

"I asked police if they had a complainant, somebody that said they were firing upon them. At that point I was told no and asked if they showed up at the scene and found 15 year old children playing with a weapon did they secure the weapon into evidence? And again was told no,"
 

WA: Burglar caught breaking into Kent farm office shot by owner
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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A burglar caught rummaging through an office at Kent's Frager Farm is dead after being shot by the business owner, police said.

The farm's owner went to his office in 25000 block of Frager Rd. S. around 1:30 a.m. after being alerted somehow that it was being burglarized, said Sgt. Cindi West with the King County Sheriff's office. The man arrived to find two young men in his office.

Deputies are still investigating exactly what happened next but eventually a fight ensued, the owner pulled out a gun and fatally shot one of the burglars. The second burglar stayed at the scene until deputies arrived.
 

FL: Marissa Alexander gets another chance to 'stand her ground'
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Alexander pleaded self-defense and sought protection under the controversial “Stand Your Ground” law but was denied and sentenced to 20 years in prison under the “10-20-Life” law. No one, including Alexander’s husband, suffered any injuries due to the warning shot, so why is she being subject to such a harsh sentencing?

However, justice has prevailed. Thursday, after spending five months in jail, the First District Court of Appeals ruled to grant Alexander a retrial. The jury was not properly instructed when handling Alexander’s case, according to the appeals court.
 

OH: Columbus Rally Opposes Ohio’s Proposed Stand Your Ground Law
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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House Bill 203 expands situations in which Ohioans can use force to defend themselves. It also relaxes the training requirements for gun owners and makes it easier for some low level drug offenders to get a gun license.

Akron City Councilwoman Linda Omobien is among those planning to speak at the rally. Akron is one of a handful of cities that have passed a resolution in opposition to the bill.

“We believe in joining forces with other major cities in the state of Ohio that we do not need this legislation,” Omobien says. “We don’t need this kind of law.”
 

Supreme Court poised to tilt further to the right
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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And it’s only a matter of time before the court is faced with another Second Amendment case following its 2008 decision protecting the right of private citizens to possess firearms. Lower courts have set varying limits on the right to carry weapons in public —so-called concealed-carry laws.
 

PA: Penn Township church to conduct four-week lecture on gun rights
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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With gun control ranking as one of the most hotly debated topics in the nation, a local church is turning its attention to the history of the Second Amendment in a new program.

Starting Oct. 9, Ruth Anderson, co-owner of the Delmont Sport Shop, will lead a four-week lecture program at Living Word Congregational Church in Penn Township that she says will cover the significance of the amendment and why it should be protected.

Anderson, who is a minister at the church, said the program will be based on documents by the county's Founding Fathers, including the Declaration of Independence and the Constitution.
 

OH: Toledo woman defends her property, holds suspect at gunpoint for the second time in months
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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When she went to see what the noise was, she found 21-year-old Thomas Lee Johnson attempting to steal a bike that was chained to her porch.

Collins promptly told Johnson to leave, but instead of just walking away, he went around to the other side of the porch and tried to lift the bike off in a different manner. Johnson still had his hands on the bike when Collins’ boyfriend came out of the door.

And since Johnson didn’t heed Collins’ warning and just walk away, Collins then pulled out her .357 Magnum revolver for a little persuasion. But even after pulling out the very large handgun and ordering Johnson to get on his knees, he still hesitated.
 

NY: A Few Simple Ideas About Gun Control
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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First, fix the background-check system by doing small things such as giving the F.B.I. ten days, instead of three, to complete them; prohibiting “high-risk” individuals from getting their hands on guns (anyone with a restraining order filed against him for a threat of violence, for example); and accelerating federal legislation to keep the violent and mentally ill from having guns. Second, make the A.T.F. more effective through such simple measures as getting the agency a director. Third, encourage research on “personalized” guns and gun triggers. Fourth, ban assault weapons, carefully defined, and with them magazines that fire more than ten rounds. And finally—radical idea—fund research on what actually works to end gun violence.
 

PA: Leader of gun owners’ group speaks in city
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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"You may be the federal government, but you ain't my boss," said Larry Pratt, executive director of Gun Owners of America, at Wednesday evening's Williamsport Tea Party meeting at the Genetti Hotel.

Pratt took stark stances on the federal government shutdown, gun ownership and more.
 

Gun control advocates should heed NRA’s words
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Gun-control advocates think the only way to keep guns out of the hands of people who shouldn’t have them is to make it harder for everybody to get them.

They should listen to some of the things National Rifle Association Executive Vice President Wayne LaPierre, their biggest nemesis, has been saying.
 

FL: Fla. lawmaker files bill to eliminate punishment for warning shots
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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I’m not quite convinced. A basic rule of handling firearms is that you never display a weapon, aim it or place your finger on the trigger unless you intend to use it in defense of yourself or others. A “warning shot” is not self-defense. A shot directed at your attacker’ is.

If Combee was looking for a cause to champion in promoting his bill, he chose poorly.
 

OH: A Potential Ohio Stand Your Ground Law Gets New Foes
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Black state lawmakers in Ohio have joined with other foes against the new legislative effort to give citizens more freedom to protect themselves, and that Ohio Black Legislative Caucus has rounded up 10,000 signatures of support for their opposition to any Ohio stand your ground law. They plan to give the name printout to Gov. John Kasich, hoping to influence him and their fellow congressional leaders in the state to cease and desist from trying to adopt this new protective law.
 

NY: New York's Governor Cuomo Sued by National Gun Rights Group
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Rather than fighting the New York government through the state court system, the Second Amendment Foundation filed its lawsuit in federal court seeking to prevent the New York government from enforcing provisions of the SAFE Act that prohibit the use of gun magazines containing more than seven rounds, according to the lawsuit.

SAF is joined in the federal lawsuit by the Shooters Committee for Political Education (SCOPE) and Long Island Firearms LLC. The groups are all represented by New York attorneys David Jensen and Robert P. Firriolo.
 

MI: Well Armed Woman chapter encourages gun safety
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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As her interest in shooting as a sport grew, Joey Lee found it hard to find other women in the area with the same hobby. So she started an all-women gun club.

The Well Armed Woman-Saginaw Valley Chapter includes about 60 gun-toting women from throughout the Great Lakes Bay Region, said Lee, chapter leader.

A 60-year-old retiree, she said she has been shooting guns since she was a kid.
 

Armed American Radio, Mark Walters, Expand Into Louisville, KY & Harrison, AR
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Armed American Radio continues its growth adding its newest affiliates in Louisville, KY on WGTK 970 AM and Harrison, AR on 1600 AM KNWA.

Host Mark Walters said, “It’s always fun announcing new affiliates and welcoming new listeners in cities across America. In today’s upside down political climate fostered by a rabid, gun hating media vocally pushing its agenda against law-abiding citizens, the more people we can reach with the truth, the better!”
 

Rest easy hunters, shutdown not affecting gun sales
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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And, it turns out, you can still purchase firearms. Despite paranoid Internet chatter to the contrary, the federal National Instant Criminal Check System — required for all firearms purchases — remains operational.

I personally checked and regular transactions through licensed dealers should not be affected. Slowdowns and delays are possible, but they always were.

But, if you recently filed an application for a federal firearms license and having heard anything back from the BATFE, your answer will have to wait. Processing FFL applications is not considered an essential part of the BATFE’s mission, and that function will likely be suspended during the shutdown.
 

MD: Judge refuses to block Maryland's gun law; opponents vow continue fighting
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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A federal judge on Tuesday refused to block implementation of Maryland's new gun control law, citing the late date of the challenge — just two business days before it was set to take effect — as an indication the law posed no imminent threat to core Second Amendment rights.

U.S District Judge Catherine Blake's refusal to grant emergency relief allowed Maryland to implement some of the nation's toughest firearm restrictions Tuesday. The disputed provisions include an expanded list of banned assault weapons and a 10-bullet limit on removable magazines. A separate lawsuit challenged a provision requiring prospective handgun buyers to submit fingerprints and get gun safety training.
 

CA: Prosecutors to determine if Del Rey shooting was self-defense
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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About 20 minutes before the shooting, Merkel came in contact with some people out looking for a missing bike about a block away. He became enraged at them, and robbed them, Morgan said.

Merkel then went to the condominium, where he severely beat a 43-year-old man in the garage. Merkel and the victim, who rented a room in the home, knew each other, Morgan said.

“The homeowner, who was not involved in any of that, came to see what was going on in his garage,” Morgan said. Finding his tenant taking a beating and overwhelmed, the homeowner pointed his registered gun at Merkel and ordered him repeatedly to leave.

He pulled the trigger when Merkel pulled a knife and lunged at him, police said.
 

PA: NRA self-defense method not working well
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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That last point adds up to a new Sandy Hook Elementary School massacre every three days. Their parents are just as devastated as the parents in Newtown, Conn., but don't get the media attention.

America's civilians own 310 million guns — undoubtedly including millions of good people. The National Rifle Association says that "the only thing stops a bad guy with a gun is a good guy with a gun." That's not working so well, is it?
 

NJ: New Jersey GOP Senate candidate nabs NRA endorsement
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Republican Steve Lonegan has nabbed the endorsement of the National Rifle Association in his bid for New Jersey Senate.

The group will be "active" in the final weeks of the race, Lonegan spokesman Rick Shaftan told PolitickerNJ.

"Mr. Lonegan is the only candidate in this race who will stand against Senators Dianne Feinstein (D-CA) and Dick Durbin (D-IL) for your Second Amendment rights in the U.S. Senate," reads a release posted on Ammoland.com by the the National Rifle Association Political Victory Fund.
 

OH: Charges won’t be brought in fatal shooting
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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A Lucas County grand jury Wednesday declined to bring criminal charges against two security officers involved in the fatal shooting of a Toledo man in the parking lot of a South Toledo bar.

...

Police said at the time that the shooting appeared to be self-defense. Police said Smith had been escorted out of the club after he and his friends got into an argument with another group.
 

CA: NRA to File Legal Challenge if Gov Brown Signs Unconstitutional Semi-Automatic Firearm Ban
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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By banning millions of the most common hunting, sporting, and self-defense rifles in existence, SB 374 is in direct conflict with the U.S. Supreme Court’s Heller decision. In Heller, the Court made it clear that arms “typically possessed by law-abiding citizens for lawful purposes” or those “in common use” are constitutionally protected.

If SB 374 is signed by the Governor, the NRA intends to immediately file suit challenging this unconstitutional law.
 

Hidden-compartment furniture for gun owners
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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When there's the proverbial bump in the night, your defensive firearm is not going to do you much good locked away in a gun safe.

Conversely, defensive firearms that are not secured in a safe can be subjected to dust, rust, theft or unauthorized use.

Gun owners with young children face additional challenges.

There are options, such as lock boxes and small safes for handguns. Those with biometric locks are quick to open. However, there's nothing similar offered for long guns.
 

China: Talking Second-Amendment Rights in China
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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I’m proud that my cousin and most Americans treat the Second Amendment with deep respect, and I wish I could tell Chinese friends that our laws reflected this respect. I could brag a little about my nation’s unique ability to handle such an extreme individual right.

But I can’t. We’re clearly not ready enough to handle it, at least as the culture and gun lobby currently stands. My government doesn’t have a healthy relationship, right now, with the Second Amendment. The United States could pass sensible gun-control laws, and treat the Second Amendment with real responsibility. But Congress hasn’t.
 

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