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Newslinks for 4/16/2016

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MI: Man faces sentencing in home invasion where 11-year-old girl pulled shotgun
Submitted by: Corey Salo

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A plea deal has been reached in connection with a home invasion where an 11-year-old girl used a shotgun to defend herself inside a Lapeer County home.

James Wasson, 54, pleaded no contest on Thursday, April 14 to multiple counts of first-degree and second-degree home invasion among 18 felony offenses connected to nine break-ins ...

One of the cases against Wasson revolves around a Jan. 30, 2015 home invasion on Five Lakes Road in North Branch Township during which an 11-year-old girl was home alone.

She locked herself in a bathroom and hid with a shotgun, until Wasson eventually opened the door and closet where the girl was hiding. She pointed the shotgun at Wasson, who then fled the home in a van filled with stolen property.
 

NC: Fatal shooting in Nebo likely self-defense, deputies say
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Deputies in McDowell County say a fatal shooting that happened in Nebo on Thursday was likely a case of self-defense.

Officers say it was reported that 71-year-old Allen Causby parked on private property off of Lake Lamar Loop on Thursday afternoon.

According to authorities, landowner Larry Gilliand smashed Causby's car window with a cane and told him to leave.

Deputies say Causby, who lives nearby, returned to the property around 6 p.m. armed with a handgun and began firing shots at the 67-year-old owner.

Gilliand returned fire and fatally shot Causby in the head.
 

NC: No charges after Winston-Salem woman killed in domestic violence incident; Forsyth DA rules self-defense
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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According to Winston-Salem police, Caldwell armed herself with a machete and attempted to attack the victim.

"The victim unsuccessfully attempted to flee the assailant, before finally grabbing [Caldwell] around her neck and lying on top of her while holding her on the floor," the news release said.

The victim then called 911 and requested that EMS and law enforcement personnel respond.

After reviewing the evidence gathered, Forsyth County District Attorney Jim O’Neill has determined that no criminal charges will be sought in this investigation, the news release said.
 

AZ: How crossing a street can make crime invisible to universities
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Education experts say Clery stats don’t give a realistic picture of crimes committed against college students.

University of Arizona Police Chief Brian Seastone said Clery doesn’t accurately capture crimes against students off campus.

He equates it to having two towns right next each other, each with their own police departments and each only required to report crimes that happen within their boundaries.
 

Senator Says U.S. Needs Gun Control Laws to 'Protect Ordinary Citizens'
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Senator Ed Markey (D-Mass.) said on Thursday that laws are needed to restrict gun ownership to “protect ordinary citizens,” like those killed in mass shootings.

“Now is the time for the families of Aurora, Newtown, Charleston, and all the cities who are saying that it is time for this scourge to end,” Markey said at a press conference.
 

Packing Heat: Should Photographers Carry a Gun on the Job?
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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It's an unavoidable topic in American conversations. In the photography world, it seems to pop up on the forums and Facebook groups often enough to warrant further consideration: guns. Not necessarily in the heated, political debate sense, but to ask this question: In a world where carrying a concealed weapon has become more normalized and photographers spend more time in remote and urban locations, do firearms have a place in your business?
 

CT: State Police Say “Gotta Cover Our Ass” Make Up Charges For Illegally Detained Man
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Michael Picard, 27, of East Hartford, was charged with creating a public disturbance and reckless use of the highway for letting motorists know of an illegal search and possible seizure that was up ahead.

Picard said he was just standing on a public sidewalk before the 4th Amendment violating DWI checkpoint, close to the on-ramp of I-84 on Park Road. He was just waving a sign that read “Cops ahead. Keep calm and remain silent.” While he was out there, he was legally carrying his self defense tool, Connecticut is an open-carry state and he has a valid permission slip to exercise that right without being arrested or detained.
 

MS: Mississippi Governor Signs Permitless Carry Bill
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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On April 15 Mississippi Governor Phil Bryant (R) signed permitless carry legislation into law.

The bill–House Bill 876–expands permitless carry in backpacks and satchels “to include belt and shoulder holsters.” It also allows churches to set forth safety policies that allow certain congregants to concealed carry in church buildings for the protection of themselves and others.

The NRA-ILA reports that Bryant’s signature comes “despite months of misleading attacks by New York gun control advocate and billionaire Michael Bloomberg and his anti-gun state groups, Everytown for Gun Safety and Moms Demand Action.”

HB 876 takes effect immediately.
 

Howard Stern: The Handgun Is ‘The Great Equalizer’
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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During the April 11 airing of The Howard Stern Show on Sirius XM, Howard Stern told a caller that the handgun is “the great equalizer.”

Stern defended the Second Amendment, saying, “I believe every citizen needs the right to be armed.”

He was interacting with a caller named Joel from Wyoming, who pointed out that it would take law enforcement “fifteen to twenty minutes” to reach him in the event of an emergency, so having a gun is his first defense.
 

CA: Civil Rights Suit Alleges CA Gave ‘Exemptions’ to Former Officers to Secure Gun Ban
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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On April 14, the Firearms Policy Foundation — together with other organizations and individuals — filed a suit against the state of California and Attorney General Kamala Harris, alleging the state made special “exemptions” for former police officers in order to secure passage of Senate Bill 707, which banned concealed carry on college campuses.

The suit alleges that the state violated the Equal Protection Clause of the Fourteenth Amendment by creating a group who can carry concealed: former police officers; and a group who cannot: concealed carry permit holders. And the suit accuses of the state of doing this in order to win the support of “anti-gun ‘peace officer’ political organizations.”
 

MI: Guns at the State Capitol
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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This week at the state Capitol, open-carry advocates got together for an annual plea to lawmakers to honor the 2nd Amendment’s right to bear arms. The day is often used as an occasion to show the juxtaposition between the right to bring guns into the state Capitol, alongside a rule that prohibits signs with words on them. [Political consultant Greg] Bowens says he doesn’t think lawmakers would be so keen on 2nd Amendment Day if the group were not a majority of white men. ”Particularly if a bunch of Arab Americans showed up with guns, it would be the end of Second Amendment Day,” he says.

Ed.: Ah, the good old 'gun owners are racists' meme strikes again.
 

AK: Campus gun bill will increase safety
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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That’s why it’s so important that every law-abiding Alaskan contact their legislators and urge them to pass SB 174, a campus safety bill that allows adults aged 21 and older to carry firearms on campus if they choose.

Often, opponents to campus carry legislation cite fears of “wild west” scenarios as the reason behind their opposition. This is what billionaire Michael Bloomberg’s out-of-state front group, Moms Demand Action, would have you believe — that mixing young adults with firearms will end in lives lost. They’ve come into Alaska and attempted to mislead the public about SB 174, but there are no facts to back up their allegation.
 

DE: Congressional candidates stake ground on gun rights
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Without a recent massacre in the headlines or new federal legislation doomed to failure, the conversation about gun violence has faded in the American dialogue.

At some point that will change — someone will empty a firearm into unsuspecting innocents again — and even Delaware's one vote in the U.S. House of Representatives could have an impact on future legislation.
 

NY: Sen. Ted Cruz visits MCC
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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He told Republicans that it is time to stand together.

"We want to see jobs back, we want to protect our freedom and we want to be safe and secure in our home and in our nation," said Cruz.

Cruz said would protect the Second Amendment if he was elected president, and that he would also enact a single flat tax.
 

FL: Pigman talks about bills passed
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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“There were three things which were substantial failures,” Pigman said. One was an open carry bill, which would have allowed concealed carry permit holders to openly carry guns. The other would have allowed students to carry guns on campus.

Both passed the House; neither was heard in the Senate. “I don’t think we have any college administrator in favor of that bill. Obviously, the Second Amendment rights’ people were very fervent about it. They were an important lobby. The campus administrators were also an important lobby. It did pass in the House, pretty much right along party lines.”

That included Pigman, who voted yes on the version that passed the House, 80-38.
 

Gun lawsuit threatens industry, perpetuates blame game
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Yesterday’s decision by a Connecticut judge that will allow a lawsuit by families of Sandy Hook victims against the makers of the rifle used by killer Adam Lanza to proceed could pose a threat far bigger than the immediate one to Remington and Bushmaster.

If firearms manufacturers, wholesalers and retailers can be held responsible for the actions of people over whom they have no control, the same standards could theoretically be used against other industries. Imagine legal actions against manufacturers of such common items as baseball bats, chainsaws or knives because someone uses one of these instruments to commit a heinous act.
 

Attitudes toward guns have changed, so must response
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Have you heard of the latest trend in the handgun market? It's the gun shaped to look just like a smartphone. I can hear the pitch: "Folks, you won't have to wait much longer for this deadly cutie."

Such a gun opens up a whole new world of self-defense possibilities. How about glam guns? Can I personalize my smartphone gun with a pink, glittery cover that showcases my fashion sense? Can I add a ring-tone? I don't know about you, but I really want my gun to match my shoes.

The maker of the smartphone gun defends his design, saying it's more inconspicuous and less likely to end up in the wrong hands. Fiction can be fun, but the reality is any gun can end up in the wrong hands eventually.
 

AL: Student Wearing Empty Gun Holster Cited for ‘Threatening Safety of Campus’
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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A student who attends the University of South Alabama was spotted carrying an empty gun holster on campus. D.J. Parten, president of Students for Concealed Carry at the school, was involved in a protest, while promoting a new documentary.

According to Campus Reform, the police were called on Parten and Tews and they showed up to confront the students.

According to the university’s website, “all weapons are prohibited in University housing buildings, parking lots and on University property.”
 

MS: Mississippi governor signs bill allowing guns in churches
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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That fact has never been lost on self-defense advocates who oppose the idea of “gun free zones” that include many churches. Prohibiting firearms in various locations, including churches, has never prevented crazed killers from ignoring such prohibitions.

Under the new Mississippi law, according to CBS News, churches can designate people who can carry guns in their buildings. Another section of the law allows carrying holstered sidearms without a permit, a provision that was opposed by the police chiefs, according to published reports.

NPR quoted Lorenzo Neal, pastor at the New Bethel African Methodist Episcopal Church in Jackson. He opposed the legislation.
 

NY: Donald Trump loves New York, and New York’s GOP loves him
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Donald Trump regaled a well-heeled New York Republican audience Thursday night as though he’s known them for years. Which he probably has.

With that one rambling, off-the-cuff 27 minute speech, the billionaire businessman showed why he’s drained much of the suspense from Tuesday’s New York GOP primary. Polls show he has more support than John Kasich and Ted Cruz combined.
 

Ice Cube Speaks Out on #BlackLivesMatter and Gun Violence
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Before you go see the latest installment of the comedy franchise, take an exclusive look at the film’s star Ice Cube discussing the importance of the #BlackLivesMatter movement and the responsibility of the Second Amendment. The film also tackles these real current issues, but in a very entertaining and interesting way.
 

Newly Released Fast & Furious Docs Show Obama Administration Efforts to Stonewall and Mislead Congress
Submitted by: Mark A. Taff
Website: http://www.marktaff.com

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Long after it would have made any difference, President Obama finally turned over thousands of Fast and Furious documents to the House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, revealing a deliberate attempt by some in the Justice Department to keep secret details about the deadly gun-running operation. It's an effort that continues to this day.
 

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