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Newslinks for 3/25/2003

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FL: Clerk has close call with robber
Submitted by: Newslinks Admin

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"As she lay face down between the cash register and the merchandise aisles, a gun pointed at her head, all store clerk Carol Barrera could think of was her children." ...

"Someone who saw the scene alerted the store owner, who then challenged the robbers and exchanged shots with them, police said." ...
 

Claire Wolfe has a new site
Submitted by: Newslinks Admin

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"At Clairewolfe.com you'll find teeny, humble observations on life, entered frequently in Wolfesblog. The focus of the blog is freedom (what they're doing to it and how to grab some of it back). But on any given day you can eavesdrop as I (and occasionally a guest commentator or two) ramble, maunder, ruminate, fulminate, babble, grouse, or exclaim about Beauty, Truth, self-sufficiency, Really Stupid People Tricks, government (speaking of Really Stupid People Tricks), justice, Attitude, life, privacy, books, monkeywreching, gun rights, things that make me laugh, and dogs."
 

CA: D.A. says killing of boyfriend was in self-defense
Submitted by: Newslinks Admin

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"Mysti Weidmann, 30, called police early on the morning of Jan. 22 to report her boyfriend had been shot. When officers arrived at the Thunderbird Drive house where the couple lived, they found 30-year-old Aurelian ...Iancu dead from a single gunshot."

"Investigators questioned Weidmann, but released her while they looked into her claim that she and Iancu had a volatile relationship and that she had acted in self-defense."

"An autopsy showed Iancu died from a gunshot to his chest."
 

OR: Controversial terrorism bill to get legislative hearing
Submitted by: Newslinks Admin

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"A tough anti-terrorism bill that has ruffled feathers from human rights activists to police departments comes before the Senate Judiciary Committee Monday."

"It would create a new class of terrorists and punish them with a life sentence. It would expand the ability of local law enforcement to conduct surveillance and keep files on groups who opponents say are guilty of nothing but their political affiliation."

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Sounds like their own little version of the "Patriot" Act.
 

Sharp rise in number of spy warrants issued
Submitted by: Newslinks Admin

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"The warrants allow authorities to tap phone and fax numbers. Agents can also conduct physical searches for up to 72 hours before being subjected to a review by the secret Foreign Intelligence Surveillance Court."

"Ashcroft defends the increase."

"Earlier this month, he told Congress the accelerated use of the warrants is one reason why there have been no further terrorist attacks in the U-S."
 

CA: Man fatally shoots Poway woman
Submitted by: Paul Raynolds

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"As their 11-year-old daughter watched in fear, a man fatally shot a woman Saturday at a busy Poway Road commercial area, witnesses said." ...

"Wisniewski said the victim had a court restraining order against the 38-year-old Poway man, who worked at a Rancho Bernardo hotel."

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Maybe this woman should have been armed with something more than a restraining order.
 

Courting anti-gun ambitions
Submitted by: Anonymous

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"The National Shooting Sports Foundation (NSSF), an industry group, notes that Miss Barnes mysteriously omitted Beretta USA, the country's third-largest handgun-maker, from the list of defendants, although the company was included in her earlier suit. Why? Perhaps because Beretta USA and the NAACP are both incorporated in Maryland, which would have made it impossible for Miss Barnes to assert the 'diversity jurisdiction' that got her case into federal court."
 

Eco-terrorists declare war
Submitted by: P. Jones

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"I am reprinting much of Rosebraugh's rallying cry to his America-hating leftists so you know exactly what we are up against:"

"(1) Attack the financial centers of the country. Using covert or black block techniques ... physically shut down financial centers which regulate and assist the functioning of U.S. economy." ...

"(2) Large-scale urban rioting. With massive unrest and even state of emergencies declared in major cities across the country, the U.S. government will be forced to send U.S. troops into the domestic arena, thereby taking resources and political focus away from the war."

"(3) Attack the media centers of the country. ... Using any means necessary, shut down the national networks of NBC, ABC, CBS, CNN, etc." ...

"(4) Spread the battle to the individuals responsible for the war and destruction of life — the very heads of government and U.S. corporations. ...Hit them in their personal lives, visit their homes, and make them feel personally responsible for committing massive atrocities."

"(5) Make it known publicly that this movement does not support U.S. troops as long as they are serving an unjust and horrifying political regime. Create an atmosphere lacking of support to assist U.S. troops at home and abroad in losing their morale and will to fight." ...

"(6) Actively target U.S. military establishments within the United States ... use any means necessary to slow down the functioning of the murdering body."

"(7) When engaging in the above six activities, strike hard and fast and retreat in anonymity. ... Do not get caught. Do not get sent to jail."
 

U.S. Steps Up Secret Surveillance
Submitted by: P. Jones

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"The FBI, for example, has issued scores of 'national security letters' that require businesses to turn over electronic records about finances, telephone calls, e-mail and other personal information, according to officials and documents. The letters, a type of administrative subpoena, may be issued independently by FBI field offices and are not subject to judicial review unless a case comes to court, officials said."

"Attorney General John D. Ashcroft has also personally signed more than 170 'emergency foreign intelligence warrants,' three times the number authorized in the preceding 23 years, according to recent congressional testimony."
 

U.S. Wins Appeal on Domestic Spy Powers
Submitted by: P. Jones

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"The Supreme Court refused Monday to be drawn into a dispute over the boundaries of a law giving the government broader surveillance authority after the Sept. 11 terrorist attacks."

"The American Civil Liberties Union and other organizations wanted the justices to consider when the government should be allowed to monitor someone's telephone conversations and e-mail, then use the information to prosecute them."
 

MD: Baltimore officer is arrested on drug charge
Submitted by: Orange Fuzzy

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"A Baltimore police officer has been charged with possession of heroin with intent to distribute and has been suspended from police duties pending an internal affairs investigation, city police said yesterday."

"Aleacia L. Hill, 25, who graduated from the police academy in September 2001 and was assigned to the Southern District, was arrested by members of the Internal Investigation Division on Friday on the heroin charge. She also was charged with altering the identification number on a handgun, police said."
 

MD: Man accused of firing gun at his home
Submitted by: Orange Fuzzy

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"Gregory Saylor, 52, of Cardinal Drive accosted the driver and passengers in the truck, which repeatedly had run across his lawn in the early morning hours, police said. When several people got out of the vehicle and allegedly threatened him, Saylor fired two rounds from a 16-gauge shotgun in their direction, police said."

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And yet, this man is being charged with assault and reckless endangerment, even though his property was assaulted and he was threatened.
 

Michael Moore booed as he slams Iraq war at Oscars
Submitted by: Orange Fuzzy

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"Famed US documentary maker Michael Moore his win of an Oscar to launch a violent attack on US President George W. Bush and war in Iraq amid loud boos from the audience."

" 'We live in fictitious times,' he said when picking up the award for best documentary for his anti-gun film 'Bowling for Columbine.' "
 

MD: Jessamy notes budget in shunning governor's conference on gun crime
Submitted by: RPA-PAC
Website: http://www.rpa-pac.org

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"Baltimore State's Attorney Patricia C. Jessamy refused to attend a State House conference on gun crime yesterday, rebuffing the governor's efforts to build consensus among law enforcement officers for a new program he favors."

"Jessamy told Gov. Robert L. Ehrlich Jr. in a letter that she wouldn't participate in the Project Exile event - which brought together Ehrlich and U.S. Attorney Thomas M. DiBiagio for the first time in more than a year - because the governor's budget would force her to lay off prosecutors."

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This whining bureaucrat won't participate not because she doesn't believe in the dubious effectiveness of Project Exile, but because she won't get more taxpayer dollars for more whining bureaucrats to feed of the public teat. Some integrity!
 

UK: Police chief launches Welsh guns amnesty
Submitted by: Newslinks Admin

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"Gwent Police’s Chief Constable, Keith Turner, spoke on behalf of all four Welsh police forces today - urging Welsh people to comply with a national firearms amnesty taking place between 31 March and 30 April."

"The Firearms Amnesty is part of a Home Office campaign to tackle gun crime in the UK." ...
 

MA: Holyoke police chief seeks switch to Glock firearms
Submitted by: Jim F.

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"Holyoke Police Chief Anthony R. Scott has proposed arming officers with the Austrian-made Glock semiautomatic pistol because of complaints about ammunition misfeeds, broken firing pins and jamming in the department's Smith & Wesson firearms."
 

Veterans group outraged over budget cuts
Submitted by: LFA Editor
Website: http://www.libertyforall.net

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"The Disabled American Veterans (DAV) has labeled as 'indefensible and callous;' a plan by the House Budget Committee to slash $470 billion from domestic spending, including health care for sick and disabled veterans. The draft budget resolution would leave the $1.6 trillion Bush tax cut plan intact and allow huge spending increases on defense and homeland security."

"DAV National Commander Edward R. Heath, Sr. expressed the organization's outrage at the spending cuts proposed in a March 12 House Budget Committee hearing. 'You are asking veterans to swallow a bitter pill to remedy an illness of your own making,' National Commander Heath said in a letter to Committee Chairman Jim Nussle (R-Iowa). 'Cutting already under funded veterans' programs to offset the costs of tax cuts is indefensible and callous.' "
 

Canada: Liberals close ranks as gun registry vote nears
Submitted by: Newslinks Admin

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"Most Liberal MPs appeared to be closing ranks behind Prime Minister Jean Chretien in support of the federal gun registry Monday, turning a deaf ear to opposition appeals to deny further funding to the troubled program."

" 'You've either got to stand with the team and with the family or you don't,' said Hamilton MP Stan Keyes, chairman of the Liberal caucus."

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Yeah, screw that whole integrity and voting for what's right thing! Just do as we, the Liberals, tell you or else.
 

Gun Laws Get Credit for Homicide Declines
Submitted by: Newslinks Admin

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"An article published by the American Journal of Public Health last December showed that the six states with the highest rates of gun ownership--Alabama, Arkansas, Louisiana, Mississippi, West Virginia, and Wyoming--had homicide rates that were three times higher than the four states with the lowest rates of gun ownership--Hawaii, Massachusetts, New Jersey, and Rhode Island. The study's lead author, Matthew Miller of the Harvard School of Public Health, concluded that "guns, on balance, lethally imperil rather than protect Americans." Combined with a 2000 assessment of gun laws around the nation by the Soros Foundation, the data also show that lax gun laws imperil Americans. That's because the Soros scorecard listed each of the six high-homicide states among the bottom third of states with the weakest gun laws, and it listed the four low-homicide states among the top 10 states with the strongest gun laws."

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The mere fact that Miller and crew at Harvard were involved in this "study" makes its data suspect, as Miller is notoriously anti-gun leaning and has time and again been shown to be an extremely biased "researcher."
 

NAACP Battles Gun Makers
Submitted by: Newslinks Admin

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"A gun battle of a legal kind got under way in Brooklyn federal court Monday with jury selection in an NAACP against major firearms manufacturers alleging they negligently allowed weapons to be sold to criminals." ...

"...it will be Weinstein who decides questions of law and fact, with input from the jury."

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Weinstein is one of the most notoriously biased anti-gun judges out there. Makes one wonder how impartial this trial will be.
 

CO: Summary of legislative action
Submitted by: Newslinks Admin

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TUESDAY

"The House State, Veterans and Military Affairs Committee is scheduled to vote House Bill 1119, which removes a provision that licensed gun dealers obtain a background check if any part of a firearm transaction occurs at a gun show."
 

Abstract Freedom
Submitted by: LFA Editor
Website: http://www.libertyforall.net

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"So, why then do I state that most people don't understand the concept of freedom? Because they are clueless! They complain about taxes and in the same breath they complain that there isn't enough money going into education, regulation of big business, fighting crime, keeping the roads paved and protecting our borders. They complain about police brutality and they praise the war on drugs. They scream about the crime rate and they advocate gun control (victim disarmament). They demand that something be done to keep murderers, rapists and child molesters off the street and they vote for politicians who pass laws that cause the worst of society to be pushed out of prison to make room for hundreds of thousands of non-violent offenders. They believe in the concept that "ignorance of the law is no excuse," and yet they know that there are hundreds of thousands of laws on the books that even the most brilliant attorney could never hope to understand in a lifetime. They keep voting for politicians who promise that they are either socially liberal or economically conservative and they get more socially controlling and economically regulating legislators and after that the people still vote for these same politicians again and again. They are outraged that terrorists could kill over three thousand people using only boxcutters as weapons and still they can't comprehend that armed citizens on those flights would have prevented the tragedy. They are hard pressed to recognize that citizens even deserve to exercise the right to carry arms on any flight, much less carry arms at all."
 

PA: Gun sales up, but not because of war
Submitted by: Newslinks Admin

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"The war with Iraq has not sent local residents scurrying for firearms, according to three local business owners who deal in handguns."

"Wes Morosky, co-owner of Duke's Sport Shop in New Castle, said his business has been busy, but not from people buying weapons because of the war or the threat of terrorism."
 

IL: Seven Killed In Weekend Gun Violence
Submitted by: Newslinks Admin

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23 Shootings Reported Over Weekend

"...there were 23 shootings, one stabbing and one beating reported to the First Deputy Superintendent's office this weekend. At the time of the reports, 12 victims were in good condition, four were in serious, three were in critical, one was described as in "guarded" condition and 10 were described as 'stable.' "

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This in a city with some of the most restrictive gun laws in the US.
 

Canada: Gun registry cost could hit $2B, critics warn
Submitted by: Newslinks Admin

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"As members of Parliament prepare to vote Tuesday on a bill to let the government spend another $59 million on the national gun registry, critics are warning that registry costs could reach $2 billion during the next 10 years."

"Canadian Alliance MP Garry Breitkreuz said today a Library of Parliament research paper suggests the cost of enforcing the Firearms Act could easily top $1 billion."
 

OH: Pistol Squad Takes Fourth At National Collegiate Pistol Championships
Submitted by: Newslinks Admin

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"The Ohio State pistol squad took fourth place at the National Collegiate Pistol Championships held at Ft. Benning in Columbus, Ga. The Buckeyes posted a 6,221 three-gun score, just six points from third place Army (6,227). The Navy defended their 2002 championship with a 6,388 mark. The Citadel took second at 6,339. OSU's Jessica Marshall (Sr., Columbus, Ohio) won individual championships in women's air (461.70) and women's sport pistol (651.00) and captured the two-gun aggregate title."
 

FL: Escambia commissioner candidate arrested on gun charge
Submitted by: Newslinks Admin

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"An Escambia County commissioner candidate was free on bond Monday after being charged with firing a gun into the ground and slightly injuring a juvenile who was hit with concrete fragments scattered by the bullet."

"James E. Jones, 58, was arrested Sunday on charges of aggravated battery with a deadly weapon, kidnapping and false imprisonment, discharging a firearm in public and reckless display of a firearm, all felonies, sheriff's spokeswoman Rhonda Ray said."
 

UK: Pub man found shot dead on his last night
Submitted by: Newslinks Admin

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"A well-known and highly popular Cumbrian pub landlord, David Harrington, was found dead in the garden of his home at Plumpton, near Penrith, yesterday evening."

"Mr. Harrington, who was 51, is understood to have died of a shotgun wound."
 

NC: A Call To Arms
Submitted by: Newslinks Admin

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"Safety concerns of American citizens at home were minimal during the Gulf War; this time around, the specter of the terrorist attacks of 18 months ago could have many citizens a little less certain of their impregnability."

"Betty Pate at the sheriff’s department said almost 100 pistol permits have been filed already in March, which she said was 'more than we’ve had in a while. Much more.' "
 

UK: Dad jailed for gun collection
Submitted by: Newslinks Admin

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"A Gun collector has been jailed after an arsenal of illegal weapons was found in his home, including a loaded revolver under his bed."

"Police raided the house Andrew Curwood shared with his two children after gathering intelligence about his collection thorough Operation Stealth, a gun-related Notts police crime initiative." ...
 

UC Davis Study Shows Gun-Related Death Common for Handgun Purchasers
Submitted by: Newslinks Admin

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"In the study were 1,162 persons who died in 1998 and who had purchased handguns during 1996-1998. Almost 22 percent of deaths in that group were gun-related. Gun suicide alone was the leading cause of death among women who purchased handguns..."

"By comparison, gun suicide made up just 0.2 percent of deaths among women, and 1.1 percent of deaths among men, who did not purchase handguns."

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What these Masters of Stating the Obvious have failed to show, however, is a causative link between these deaths and the guns purchased.
 

RI: Former prison guard begins sentence for illegal gun possession
Submitted by: Newslinks Admin

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"Thirty-four-year-old Dunn M. Beckett of Cumberland was convicted by a jury in March 2002 for possessing a sawed-off shotgun."

"He had been free on bond pending appeal. But his appeal was denied last month."

"Federal agents found the illegal gun in Beckett’s garage last August."
 

UK: Family dog is shot dead by gun thug
Submitted by: Newslinks Admin

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"A family pet has been shot dead in south Wirral."

"The 11-year-old pedigree Shetland sheep dog Toby had been let out into the back garden by its owner Susan Chatterton, 40, of Overpool Road, Ellesmere Port."

"But when she called him back in for a feed she was horrified to find him slumped on the ground. A vet confirmed the dog had been shot in the head."
 

The crash that killed my data (Letter by John Lott to the Washington Post)
Submitted by: Newslinks Admin

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FULL TEXT BELOW

Eight academics at eight different universities have informed me that they have written to your paper in response to two recent attacks on me and my research. But your paper has chosen not to publish the letters, not even one from an academic who wanted to correct a statement attributed to him that was the opposite of what he had written.

A Feb. 11 Federal Page article questioned the existence of a 1997 survey that was used to "support claims in [my] provocative book." My discussion of the survey actually involved only one number in one sentence, and even then I qualified my statement by beginning that sentence: "If a national survey that I conducted is correct." In any case, despite my past willingness to talk to your reporters, no one at your paper asked me about my survey. The bottom line is that I lost data for most of my various research projects, as well as the files for my book "More Guns, Less Crime," in a computer crash in July 1997. With the help of other scholars, primarily David Mustard at the University of Georgia, the massive data sets using county and state level crime data were reconstructed so the data could be given to academics who requested it. This enabled researchers at dozens of universities to re-estimate every single regression in my book. I redid the survey last year and obtained similar results. (Academics have confirmed my hard-disk crash as well as discussions that I had back in 1996 and 1997 regarding the survey, and there is also verification by a participant in the survey.)

This data set and all the other data used in my new book, "The Bias Against Guns," have also been made available to anyone who requests them at www.johnlott.org.

As to the claim, raised in a Feb. 1 Style article, that I used a fictitious identity in making posts in Internet chat rooms, I did indeed do that. I originally used my own name but switched after receiving threatening and obnoxious telephone calls from other Internet posters.

-- John R. Lott Jr.
 

IL: Three Sue Chicago Police Alleging Illegal Search
Submitted by: Newslinks Admin

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"Chicago police officers unlawfully frisked Olympic speed skater Shani Davis, rifling through his pockets, and making him feel "like dirt," he claimed Monday in a lawsuit filed against the city and the police department." ...

"The three African American men said undercover white police officers stopped them on the North Side, patted them down in an apparent search for guns or drugs when the officers had no reason to suspect the men had committed any crime."
 

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