Design of AR-15 could derail charges tied to popular rifle

This photo provided by the U.S. Department of Justice shows AR-15 lower receivers, which federal agents have seized, including these unfinished ones taken in 2014 in California, for firearms investigations nationwide.

DALLAS — A subtle design feature of the AR-15 rifle has raised a technical legal question that is derailing cases against people who are charged with illegally buying and selling the gun’s parts or building the weapon.

At issue is whether a key piece of one of America’s most popular firearms meets the definition of a gun that prosecutors have long relied on.

For decades, the federal government has treated a mechanism called the lower receiver as the essential piece of the semi-automatic rifle, which has been used in some of the nation’s deadliest mass shootings. Prosecutors regularly bring charges based on that specific part.

But some defense attorneys have recently argued that the part alone does not meet the definition in the law. Federal law enforcement officials, who have long been concerned about the discrepancy, are increasingly worried that it could hinder some criminal prosecutions and undermine firearms regulations nationwide.

“Now the cat is out of the bag, so I think you’ll see more of this going on,” said Stephen Halbrook, an attorney who has written books on gun law and history. “Basically, the government has gotten away with this for a long time.”

Cases involving lower receivers represent a small fraction of the thousands of federal gun charges filed each year. But the loophole has allowed some people accused of illegally selling or possessing the parts, including convicted felons, to escape prosecution. The issue also complicates efforts to address so-called ghost guns, which are largely untraceable because they are assembled from parts.

Since 2016, at least five defendants have challenged the government and succeeded in getting some charges dropped, avoiding prison or seeing their cases dismissed entirely. Three judges have rejected the government’s interpretation of the law, despite dire warnings from prosecutors.

Federal regulations define a firearm’s “frame” or “receiver” as the piece considered to be the gun itself. But in an AR-15, the receiver is split into upper and lower parts — and some of the components listed in the definition are contained in the upper half. That has led judges to rule that a lower receiver alone cannot be considered a gun.

The lower receiver sits above the pistol grip, holds the trigger and hammer, and has a slot for the magazine. By itself, it cannot fire a bullet. But by treating the piece as a firearm, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives is able to regulate who can obtain it. Because authorities consider the part to be a gun, people prohibited from having firearms have been charged for possessing them.

In 2018, prosecutors said a ruling against the government would “seriously undermine the ATF’s ability to trace and regulate firearms nationwide.” CNN first reported the case and its implications.

Last month, a federal judge in Ohio dealt the latest blow, dismissing charges against two men accused of making false statements to buy lower receivers.

“Any public citizen would be concerned about this loophole that we exploited,” said attorney Thomas Kurt, who represented defendant Richard Rowold. “As a citizen, I hope the ATF corrects this. As Mr. Rowold’s attorney, I’m grateful the judge followed the law in getting to the correct result.”

The gun industry estimates there are more than 17 million AR-15-style rifles in circulation, and the National Rifle Association once dubbed it “America’s rifle.” AR-15-style weapons were used in attacks in Newtown, Connecticut, Las Vegas and Parkland, Florida.

In the case of Rowold, who is prohibited from buying or possessing firearms because of felony convictions, the government claimed that he used another man as a proxy to purchase 50 lower receivers. The 2018 indictment also charged him with having 15 lower receivers. Kurt declined to comment on why his client had the parts.

The case rested on the ATF’s claim that the components were legally firearms. Judge James Carr called that a “plainly erroneous” reading of the law and said the agency has a duty to fix the problem.

“Misapplying the law for a long time provides no immunity from scrutiny,” Carr wrote in his order to dismiss.

Federal prosecutors in Rowold’s case and several others declined to comment. An ATF spokeswoman would not answer questions posed by The Associated Press but said the agency is “keenly assessing” Carr’s decision.

The problem has attracted attention at the highest levels of law enforcement.

In 2016, then-Attorney General Loretta Lynch wrote a letter to House Speaker Paul Ryan after a judge dismissed a case in Northern California involving a man with a felony record who was accused of buying an unmarked AR-15 lower receiver from an undercover agent.

Prosecutors argued that the case against Alejandro Jimenez should proceed even if the part “does not perfectly fit” the legal definition. The judge dismissed the charges.

The decision prompted Lynch to write that if the ATF wants an AR-15 lower receiver to be considered a firearm under the law, then it should pursue “regulatory or administrative action.” But there’s no public record of the ATF taking such a step.

“I can’t imagine why no one has taken the initiative to correct this,” said Dan O’Kelly, a former senior ATF agent and director of a gun-training company known as International Firearm Specialist Academy. His testimony has guided several defense attorneys.

Since Lynch’s letter, such prosecutions have continued to secure prison sentences.

In April, for instance, an Oklahoma man was charged with illegally possessing a firearm after police who pulled him over found loaded high-capacity magazines and the lower receiver of an AR-15-style rifle in his truck.

Jason Scott Pedro, a 37-year-old with a felony record for domestic violence, was sentenced in November to seven years in prison.

There’s no evidence in court records that Pedro’s lawyer challenged whether the lower receiver was rightly considered a gun. The attorney did not respond to requests for comment but has filed a notice of appeal.

“I think the criminal defense bar has kind of let their clients down for letting this go on for all these years,” Halbrook said.

In one case, an ATF expert testified that the same principle could apply to many other firearms. Prosecutors worry that more rulings against the government could allow people prohibited from having guns to purchase weapons piece by piece with no regulation or background check.

Franklin Zimring, a professor at the University of California, Berkeley School of Law, is skeptical of that claim and said the same behavior could often be prosecuted under state laws.

The AR-15 is a popular model for gun enthusiasts to legally build at home. The rifles are sometimes constructed out of partially machined receivers, often called “80% receivers,” which can be bought and sold without background checks and need not have serial numbers because they are unfinished.

If federal officials want to maintain control in this growing do-it-yourself gun market they need to first establish functional regulation of lower receivers, said Kristen Rand, legislative director at the Washington, D.C.-based Violence Policy Center.

“From a public safety standpoint,” she said, ”this is very important and isn’t just an in-the-weeds legal definitional problem.”

———

Dazio reported from Los Angeles. Associated Press Writer Lisa Marie Pane in Boise, Idaho, and researcher Jennifer Farrar in New York City contributed to this report.

Copyright 2020 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

(52) comments

jagman

Apparently, it is now a violation of the fnp comment censors "rules" to point out the obvious truth about mass shooters...that they are mentally ill.

Trying to start a discussion with those who refuse to engage on this is the first step in solving the problem.

Yet, leftist comments full of all sorts of blatant lies about the NRA and law abiding firearm owners are allowed to stand. None of which advances the debate to a point we can start to figure out a solution.

You'd think the fnp, claiming to be a local newspaper representing all of the community, would welcome some sort of discussion that might just be a beginning to figuring out what to do about such an obvious problem.

gabrielshorn2013

Agreed jag, and it is sad. Smarmy rhetoric is OK, but a rational fact-based discussion apparently is not. Also notice that we get crickets in response to any of questions posed to the divine Mme. M.

Comment deleted.
gabrielshorn2013

Maybe if Mme. M read "Why Meadow Died" by Andrew Pollack, father of one of the MSD shooting victims in Broward County Florida, she might understand. The shooter, Nicolas Cruz, was a nutcase, yet he was constantly given a "pass" for his behavior. Because of the BoE PROMISE policy, they were not allowed to report him to the police. The students all knew about him. They had a time bomb in their midst, but did nothing about it.

phydeaux994

LEGAL guns owned by responsible, GOD fearing people for legal use from hunting to self defense are not the problem. Here’s the problem....anyone of any age can get any gun for any purpose, ANONYMOUSLY!!!! Thanks to the NRA.

gabrielshorn2013

Not legally, and the NRA has always supported prosecution of those that violate any part of 18 USC 922 to the full extent of the law.

MRS M

This is good to know, gabriel! All of America should feel safer, knowing, that after heinous gun violence has been committed, "the NRA has always supported prosecution of those that violate any part of 18 USC 922 to the full extent of the law". So exemplary, that the NRA is going to persecute those who obtained their gun illegally, particularly effective if the shooter is still alive after his massacre! America is now safe! The NRA, so proudly supported by so many gun owners, has done nothing to diminish the wide availability of military weapons in our society. The NRA's main goal is not the protection and safety of the majority of Americans, nor the persecution of those who by law are prohibited for having gotten the gun they killed with illegally, BUT by keeping alive the craven lie of threatened 2nd Amendment rights, while working to guarantee to keep the money-flow going into the political campaigns of desperate and money-hungry politicians who will trade an infusion of $$$$$ for votes. So much for "Responsible Gun Ownership" in the U.S., with proud members paying their NRA dues, and looking the other way as the violence against society continues, with the AR-15's and others like it, proudly touted as "America's guns", available to just about anyone, just about any where. 17 million in circulation, with no end in sight. Thank you, NRA and it's committed members, and the members of congress committed to doing nothing......except offering pious "thoughts and prayers" to broken families.

gabrielshorn2013

Ah, another fact-free emotional missive from Mme. M. I know you find it distasteful to answer any questions that people ask of you here in this forum. I also know that you have a hard time focusing on the facts in order to answer such questions as demonstrated here today, but let’s give it a go, eh? As you must know, the NRA is not responsible for prosecuting anyone. They are not law enforcement. That is the justice system’s job. Do you believe that the justice system has done a good job of prosecuting violent offenders to the fullest extent of the law? If so, how so? If not, why not? Would you believe that most violent criminal offenders are repeat offenders? Did you also know that their sentences are whittled down to essentially a slap on the wrist after shooting someone, and they’re back out on the streets in a few months? Would you also find it shocking that in one instance a thirty year sentence for homicide was whittled down to 18 months, and the perp got out early, only to murder three of his coworkers at The Granite Factory outside Baltimore? You again use the term “military weapon”. Could you please elaborate on what a “military weapon” is? What is the difference between a “military weapon” and a civilian weapon? Would my semiautomatic hunting rifle count as a “military weapon”? You seem to know what the NRA has and is thinking and doing about illegal use of firearms. How do you know this? Are you a member? Have you read anything by them? Have you visited their website? Or are you just going by what you have heard, or what some people have told you? Do you believe that the Second Amendment is as important as the other nine inalienable rights as stated in the Bill of Rights? If no, why not? Would it be OK for the government to quarter troops in your home, as prohibited by the third amendment? You seem to have couched your statements about the AR15, to “just about anyone, just about anywhere”. Good for you, but you didn’t narrow the ability to obtain any firearm as it currently exists. Did you know that all firearm purchasers must undergo a full background check, and truthfully answer all of the questions in Form 4473? Did you also know that an untruthful answer to any of those questions is a Federal felony? Would you be amazed that neither Federal nor State justice systems has prosecuted anyone for lying on Form 4473? Why is that, and do you believe that is right? Have you ever read anything from James Alan Fox or Jack Levin of Northeastern University? They are two pre-eminent experts on mass murder who have written extensively on the subject of mass shootings. II know that this will be difficult for you to actually show what you know about the issue, but take a deep breath and give it a shot. Whattaya say?

collinsm65

Maybe your grampa’s NRA did that.

gabrielshorn2013

You obviously have obviously not been reading anything from the NRA. Go to their website and learn. www.nra.org

collinsm65

No god so nothing to fear there.

KellyAlzan

Test

public-redux

It worked, Pb.

gabrielshorn2013

[lol]

gary4books

Fear "Machine Gun Kelly?"

For years the publicity was on "machine guns" and we all knew that a common hunting rifle was not a problem. Or was it. It is "semi-automatic." Got to be bad if it says "anything" automatic. Even the ordinary hunting rifle that shoots every time the trigger is pulled. What next? The dreaded single shot .50 cal. anti-tank rifle? That can shoot through an engine block?

MRS M

No question....the NRA and the gun-owners of America win this debate. Note all the data cited! Guns vs knives vs airplanes. Knives kill! No wait....it's the airplanes! "Unassailable", "strong" evidence that GUNS DO NO HARM, folks. GUNS SAVE LIVES, all over America. See that case in N.C. And, strong evidence showing a gun saved a life in Florida. The more Americans carrying the weaponry of warfare in society today....the better for all concerned. There's no need to live in fear, repression, or worry that the very brave and entitled gun owners of America, or their loved ones, will EVER be threatened. Yet, it's difficult to understand, having lived, commuted, and worked in large cities all over the United States, what mentality makes so many gun owners so very, very afraid. So threatened, and so incapable of conducting their lives and managing their fearful thoughts, that they have convinced themselves, that armed danger is around ever corner; that threats to their very safety and existence are a constant; and that only by owning and packing weaponry are they able to ensure a life of some peace and mental harmony. What a sad commentary on those who believe their very survival in America today requires that they own military-style weapons. Along with loads of "impressive" data to justify their thinking. The most convincing evidence of all? That "the vast majority of gun owners are law abiding citizens" ! Until of course, they aren't............ having killed or maimed a spouse, a co-worker, a family member or neighbor mistaken for an intruder, a fellow-church-goer or motorist or shopper, another guy or gal at the local bar, or any number of innocent children who "find" the loaded gun in the house, left there by the "adult" in charge, who can't seem to live his or her life in peace and harmony, without packing a loaded gun in the house, in the car, in their belt or purse. No wonder gun owners are so very, very afraid.

jagman

And nowhere in your screed did you mention the faction of mentally ill people who are the perpetrators of crimes against the law abiding.

Also, ever wonder why most of the mass shootings occur in gun-free zones? DUH!

MRS M

"Screed"? Funny! The rebuttal of the gun lovers of America......so very tough, yet afraid of their own shadows. The gun free zones which have become the "killing fields" of America? I guess you mean places like elementary, middle and high schools. Churches. Hotels. Nightclubs. Shopping centers, stores and meetings. Movie theaters. Concerts. Bars and Restaurants. University lecture halls. And let's not forget where all those "law abiding citizens" cited live and die.........in their own homes, too, by a "loved one' or tragically, by their own hand. It must be terrible to live a life so dominated by "fear' and perceived threats, that only a loaded gun is able to provide "security".

gabrielshorn2013

A lot of puffery in your opinion Madame M. Lets pare it down into its essentials, without the gratuitous mockery. Yes, defensive gun use does save lives. Do you deny that fact? If so, let me point you to the Bureau of Justice Statistics report (https://www.bjs.gov/content/pub/pdf/fv9311.pdf), which states that there were 235,700 documented defensive uses of a firearm against a violent attack between 2007 and 2011. Many other sources claim up to 3 million. Do those people who are alive today because they defended themselves against a violent attack not count? Nobody has any reason to be afraid if they are prepared. We just go about our daily lives as usual, unless attacked. The instances I gave were people in their own homes who were attacked. Is there never a reason for self defense? Is there never a reason to use deadly force, even if you are threatened with deadly force? No civilians own “military-style weapons”. If you are referring to the AR platform, they are not military style, and never claimed to be. They are semi-automatic (one trigger pull, one round fired) and not fully automatic (one trigger pull yields either a 3-shot burst or continuous fire). No military force would take an AR15 or similar into battle. Those are M16s, which are significantly different. I take it you are a “romantic”, leaving reason and data behind in your thought process. Arguments are not proven without data and reason. Do you deny the factual statement “the vast majority of gun owners are law abiding citizens”? What proportion of legal gun owners go bad? Your statement is true, just as water flows downhill, or the sun rises every morning. However, while water always flows downhill, and the sun always rises, not all firearm owners go bad. As a matter of fact, very few actually do.

MRS M

gabriel, I'm unsure why you are so desperately committed to defending the possession and helpful use of guns. Obviously, you're not one of those "living in fear' or needing a gun to feel whole, you just need your gun(s) to protect you from what I'm sure you believe is an imminent attack. By whom, I'm unsure. After all, someone else has already noted the brilliant statistic here, that "stats-show-5-times-more-murders-by-knives-than-rifles-in-2018" . (Perhaps you should start defending knife ownership). In the meantime, back here on Planet Earth, the innocent will continue to die, and just as the sun rises, and water flows downhill, big NRA money and 2nd Amendment fear-mongers will continue to defend the indefensible. And note.....not one mention of the true gun lovers of America.....the sportsmen and women and their families.........whose greatest fear seems to be being reamed by an angry buck, or shot by another sportsman on a lovely November morning.

gabrielshorn2013

No Mme. M, I have no need to be afraid of anything. Yours is merely an emotional opinion, devoid of any factual basis. My firearms all have a specific primary purpose. I hunt multiple species, from rabbits to elk. You can't hunt rabbits with an elk gun, and vice-versa. I also compete in various NRA sanctioned shooting events around the east coast. I wouldn't use any of my match firearms for hunting either. My secondary use for two of my firearms, a shotgun and a pistol, are for home protection. I'll assume you're a city gal, but many of us live in the country where calling 911 is not an option. In our case, if an immediate response is ever required, the police are minutes away. I get it, you don't like guns, and are afraid of them. If so, save yourself some agita and don't buy one or allow them in your home. Problem (for you) solved. In the meantime the rest of us on earth will go on with our lives...unafraid. Not even of a rogue buck, or our fellow hunters any time of the year.

jagman

And yet again, Mrs M, you have completely ignored my original question to you. Why will you not address the factor in 100% of these mass murders: Mental illness?

CRSmith88

So if the lower isn't the "firearm" component what part gets the serial? Does it only get the serial if sold as a complete lower, do drop in trigger kits get serials? I'm not going left or right on this one but I think if the legal conclusion is that no part is officially the "firearm" component, then what do you do with a fully assembled one? Sell it like a black powder? This argument could easily apply for glocks/sigs sold in parts as well. Seems very slippery slope if the conclusion is that guns are technically not guns.

tatt2ed

CR... The argument is about the lower being consider "the gun", which it is not. It is certainly a component, no argument, but alone, it is nothing but a blunt force object. Yes, only the lower gets a serial number, but that alone does not make it a functioning firearm, that requires an upper receiver and a BCG. When the components are assembled, it becomes a functioning firearm, and should at that point be considered one.

On Glocks, you are again correct. At the simplest, a Glock is 4 pieces; slide, frame, barrel and recoil spring. Of course, there are several smaller parts that make the trigger assembly, but those are the major 4 pieces. None of those are a firearm, the frame has the serial number, but again, the frame cannot cause any damage short of blunt force.

I would not classify it as a slippery slope, I believe this makes the definition of a firearm much more defined.

CRSmith88

Right, but what I'm getting at is if the item can be sold as parts, and none of them are serialized, then it is up to the consumer to determine when it is a firearm and the responsibility is on the consumer to declare it officially as a firearm, even if they shipped you a fully disassembled kit with fully functioning parts. That's dangerous and really sketchy. The 80% bypasses this because they can sell you everything except the one part that's not YET a firearm so while you may have bought a box of parts, you have to take willful action to make it function, then because you could take that willful action at any time, its assumed you take it in to get serialized at your discretion once complete. Here you could just buy a box of parts that upon sale are knowingly fully functional when assembled but disassembled the law could just assume your an enthusiast of an off-branded erector set.

CRSmith88

Additionally, if this makes the definition much more defined then it could arguably greatly limit the sale of lowers, since they are NOT firearms, they are NOT protected by the 2A. The slippery slope is that currently no weapons are sold functional yet disassembled. Even Krink, Sten or other collectors kits. If this is made legal it's just one more step at encouraging the proliferation of untraceable weapons. That should scare the government, law enforcement and law abiding citizens. You might as well argue why the Anarchists Cookbook is freedom of speech and should be kept in county libraries.

tatt2ed

You cannot buy a lower receiver (milled for a trigger group, ready to be mated to an upper) without a serial number. You can purchase a 80% lower without a serial number, but the trigger group cavity is unfinished, meaning you it will require substantial machining to allow for a trigger group to be installed. Vast majority of people do not have the time, skill or tooling to complete this. ATF does not classify an 80% receiver as a firearm.

CRSmith88

100% aware of the difference and the exact tools and skill required.

Alice Jones

Gun manufacturers are nothing but merchants of misery and death. How they can look their families in the eyes is beyond comprehension.

jagman

https://americanmilitarynews.com/2019/10/fbi-stats-show-5-times-more-murders-by-knives-than-rifles-in-2018/

Alice Jones

Dead is dead. How many mass knife killings?

jagman

100% of mass murders are committed by PEOPLE. By definition, all those people are mentally ill (you'd have to be to commit such an act). Do you support banning them?

Conversely, the overwhelming number of firearm owners are law abiding citizens who have never committed a crime.

It is a well recognized fact that the National Rifle Association is the nations oldest civil rights organization.

Our nations largest mass murder was carried out using aircraft to do the deed (9/11/01). Would you support banning aircraft?

gabrielshorn2013

Sam, here are a few references.

https://www.nationalreview.com/2019/08/mass-murder-without-guns/

https://www.usnews.com/news/us/articles/2019-08-07/4-dead-2-wounded-in-southern-california-stabbings

https://www.heritage.org/firearms/commentary/6-reasons-gun-control-will-not-solve-mass-killings

richardlyons

To use your words jag; "100% of mass murders are committed by people. By definition, all those people are mentally ill." "Our nations largest mass murder was carried out using aircraft to do the deed (9/11/01)." It would seem by your logic that the 9/11 perpetrators were not terrorists but mentally ill. Strange you are.

jagman

Those guys were both terrorists and mentally ill, Lyons. What's so hard to figure out about that?

Consider that a terrorist who likes to chop off heads and post the video on the internet is obviously a mental wack job and a terrorist.

richardlyons

You logic is non existent dpst

gabrielshorn2013

Sam, The stories below are people that used a firearm to defend themselves against armed intruders. They are with their families because they were able to successfully defend themselves. This is only a partial list that I was able to compile in ten minutes.

Pregnant Florida woman kills home intruder with AR-15

by Mike Brest | November 04, 2019 10:02 AM

A pregnant Florida woman saved her husband and daughter's lives by killing a home intruder with an AR-15.

The mom, who is eight months pregnant, retrieved the weapon after the intruders pistol-whipped her husband and violently grabbed their 11-year-old daughter last week.

https://www.washingtonexaminer.com/news/pregnant-florida-woman-kills-home-intruder-with-ar-15

Bread man delivers heroics to foil armed robbery at Georgia fast-food restaurant

Posted: 5:31 PM, Dec 01, 2019 Updated: 5:31 PM, Dec 01, 2019

When Chilton realized a pistol-wielding man was allegedly holding up the business, he ran back to his truck and grabbed his gun, authorities said.

https://www.abcactionnews.com/news/national/bread-man-delivers-heroics-to-foil-armed-robbery-at-georgia-fast-food-restaurant

Second deadly home invasion in 24 hours leaves intruder in Fayetteville dead, another at large

FAYETTEVILLE, N.C. — Fayetteville police reported a home invasion Thursday evening that left one intruder dead and another at large after being shot by the homeowner. It comes less than 24 hours after another home invasion in the county.

https://www.wral.com/second-deadly-home-invasion-in-24-hours-leaves-intruder-in-fayetteville-dead-another-at-large/18632006/

Here is a list of instances where a firearm was used to defend someone in August. There are links to January through July in the article, s well as links to the original stories on TV and in newspapers.

https://www.dailysignal.com/2019/09/27/lawful-gun-owners-defended-their-lives-and-livelihoods-in-august/

richardlyons

FL, GA, NC, hmmm.

gabrielshorn2013

OK, as you wish. Here are stories from other areas of the country. These were all in the links found in the Daily Signal. Did you look?

Aug. 20; Washington, D.C.—A concealed carry permit holder shot at two armed men who approached him at a bus stop and threatened to rob him. The would-be robbers blocked the permit holder’s path, telling him not to move while brandishing a gun. The permit holder then drew his own firearm and fired several rounds, striking one assailant in the arm and sending both fleeing.

https://www.washingtonpost.com/local/public-safety/legal-gun-owner-fears-robbery-shoots-person-at-bus-stop-dc-police-say/2019/08/21/058cfdb6-c392-11e9-b72f-b31dfaa77212_story.html?noredirect=on

Aug. 27; Akron, Ohio—An elderly homeowner told journalists that a would-be burglar “picked the wrong house” after being caught by the homeowner and held at gunpoint until police arrived. The house had been broken into just days earlier, and some of the homeowner’s firearms and ammunition had been stolen. Since other valuable items had been left behind, the homeowner feared that the burglar might return to finish the job armed with one of the stolen guns. This time, however, the homeowner was ready.

https://www.foxnews.com/us/ohio-grandfather-gun-intruder

Aug. 28; Dallas—An 84-year-old man protected himself and his sleeping wife by shooting an armed home intruder, who then fled the property. Burglars had targeted the couple in the past and the man told journalists that he had decided not to be a victim anymore. He explained that the police can’t be everywhere at once, so “sometimes you’ve got to take responsibility of your own to protect your own.” The neighborhood crime watch leader agreed, saying: “If more people would shoot at the robbers or invaders, they would think twice about breaking into their homes. [They would think,] ‘Hey this person might be armed.’

https://www.nbcdfw.com/news/local/attempted-home-invader-shot-in-dallas/207736/

July 16, San Diego. A man armed with a knife broke into a home and began stabbing the 54-year-old homeowner until the homeowner’s son was able to intervene, shooting and killing the attacker with his father’s gun.

The home invasion caused some residents to question the logic of a proposed local ordinance that would require gun owners to keep their firearms locked in a safe or left inoperable when not on their person.

https://www.kusi.com/lake-murray-burglary-calls-new-gun-law-into-question/

And many, many more.

DickD

Cherry picking, gabe!

tatt2ed

Richard, you right. None from MD are listed because we are forced to be victims, if one abides by the law.

richardlyons

I could list an equal number of stories of children killing each other due to (presumably) parental negligence, friends killing each other while examining or horsing around with loaded (thought to be unloaded) firearms, hunters shooting other hunters or hikers or houses with residents therein due to their negligence. I thought we agreed to disagree on this issue. Perhaps not.

gabrielshorn2013

How in the world is finding evidence online to show that firearms have been used to save someone's life Dick? What findings did I discard when I was searching for "defensive firearm use"? That term doesn't mean what you think it means.

gabrielshorn2013

Ummm…you responded to my comment richard, not the other way around. Therefore, you initiated the discussion. Now, did the people in my examples not have a right to defend themselves, remaining alive? The issue is whether there is a right to self defense (which there is under the 2A). Sam's (Alice’s) claim was that “Gun manufacturers are nothing but merchants of misery and death. How they can look their families in the eyes is beyond comprehension.”. Since my examples had access to firearms, and used them to protect themselves, those manufacturers could proudly look their families, or anyone else in the eye. And the targeted victims can continue to look their loved ones in the eye.

gabrielshorn2013

And just in case you don’t think it happens in Maryland (These took five minutes to look up):

Elderly homeowner shoots at intruder in Mitchellville

A homeowner shot at a suspect who broke into a Mitchellville home early Wednesday morning, according to Prince George's County police.

https://www.wusa9.com/article/news/local/maryland/elderly-homeowner-shoots-at-intruder-in-mitchellville/65-513140375

Prince George's Co. Police investigate fatal shooting after home break-in

by Melissa DiPane/ ABC7 Saturday, July 1st 2017

Prince George’s County Police are still investigating, but say at around 12:30 p.m., two suspects entered a home in the 12600 block of Lusby Lane in Brandywine and then gunshots rang out. One of the suspects was shot and killed. The other one ran away. One of the home’s occupants suffered non-life threatening injuries.

https://wjla.com/news/local/prince-georges-co-police-investigate-fatal-shooting

Police: Lothian homeowner shoots alleged intruder

LOTHIAN, Md. —

An intruder who broke into a Lothian home was shot by the homeowner, Anne Arundel County police said.

https://www.wbaltv.com/article/police-lothian-homeowner-shoots-alleged-intruder/8667793#

tatt2ed

gabe, no arguments on this one. MD still has a duty to retreat law, but the castle doctrine applies inside the home. However, you must still make the case that your use of force was "reasonable".

richardlyons

Sorry Gabe but no. I pointed out the states the articles YOU chose. No comment other than "Hmmm."

gabrielshorn2013

Sorry richard, but you should not have addressed my comment at all. Hmmm is still a comment, albeit a nebulous one. Was it an expression of belief? Non-belief? Concurrence? Who knows. Your hmmm opened the door to respond. The door is now closed, unless of course you choose to comment again.

richardlyons

I'll comment whenever I believe I have something to say, just like you.

gabrielshorn2013

Thats cool richard, no problem. I didn't say don't ever comment, but don't respond to me and then not expect me to respond in turn. I guess our little agreement is off then.

DickD

Why was someone with y felony conviction carrying weapons? That should be enough to convict him. Never mind the rest.

jagman

Convicted felons, by definition, are people who have committed major crimes.

Could be the reason many continue to commit crimes. Human nature 101.

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