Tuesday, July 22, 2014

VA-ALERT: VCDL Update 7/22/14

Not yet a VCDL member? Join VCDL at: http://www.vcdl.org/join
VCDL's meeting schedule: http://www.vcdl.org/meetings
Abbreviations used in VA-ALERT: http://www.vcdl.org/help/abbr.html

1. Home owner fires warning shot at unannounced police in ninja costumes - wins case
2. Reminder about Charlottesville meeting tonight (July 22) - corrected RSVP email
3. Inexpensive .22 LR snap caps
4. Petition to remove sound suppressors from the NFA list
5. Prepper's Festival celebrates survival, self-sufficiency
6. Why can't rifles, carbines be returned?
7. NRA protesters: 'Honk to stop gun violence' [VIDEO]
8. The first amendment guide to the second amendment
9. Personal safety and awareness tips for hikers
10. Homemade guns: legal, unregistered and can kill [VIDEO]
11. Firearm silencer/suppressor sales skyrocket
12. Do guns save lives?
13. Inteliscope targeting device for android/apple phones
14. GA Governor sign's 'unprecedented' bill expanding gun rights
15. [NY] Assault rifle found in pile of trash
16. [NY] Officials argue for flexibility with gun law violators...
17. [IL] At least 8 dead, 44 wounded in weekend shootings

1. Home owner fires warning shot at unannounced police in ninja costumes - wins case

This happened in PORTSMOUTH, Virginia!

Police, dressed up like ninjas in black tactical gear and unannounced, try to open a locked door on a house, the WRONG house, in the middle of the night. The homeowner hears the noise and tries to see who is in his yard. Men in dark clothing point guns with lasers at the homeowner. Homeowner, with a laser beam on his chest and in fear for his life fires a warning shot through a window and flees to neighbor's house to get help. Once the police have finally identified themselves to the homeowner, the homeowner disarms. Then the police, who are at the wrong house and pointing loaded guns at the innocent occupant, charge the homeowner with reckless handling of a firearm!

A jury didn't buy it and rightfully so. (That said, I maintain that warning shots should never be used.)

The charge cost the homeowner his job and he's planning on suing. I hope he wins big.

"'As far as the officers response, I support their response 100 percent,' said Portsmouth Police Chief Ed Hargis, who claims his men never heard Watson say he had a gun or say anything. 'Anytime the police hear there is a firearm, they start giving verbal commands, and they start yelling police.'" Well if that's what it takes anymore for police, dressed in all black and in the middle of the night, to identify themselves, then they should assume every home has a firearm in it. And a person is NOT required to tell anyone that they have a firearm before using that gun in self-defense.

"The jury thought Watson showed restraint by only firing one shot." Amen. And the police were lucky he didn't fire that shot, and more, through the door instead of out a window. By attempting entry into that house and pointing guns at the homeowner, the police set themselves up for disaster.

"'This case, and firearm instructor concerns, as well as executive staff, we have modified the policy and taken the lasers off the weapons,' Chief Hargis said." Call me cynical, but I think they are taking those lasers off because putting a laser beam on someone's chest is evidence that a loaded gun is indeed pointed at them. Such evidence prevents the police from successfully claiming otherwise, as they tried to do in this case.

Police are NOT the military and should not dress or act is if they are. If this trend doesn't bother you, it should. SWAT teams were created to handle hostage situations only, but now they're are involved in all kinds of situations and many times with unnecessarily deadly consequences for innocent citizens AND the police.

From nbc12.com: http://tinyurl.com/nco3wpj

2. Reminder about Charlottesville meeting tomorrow night (July 22) - corrected RSVP email

July 22 is the next VCDL meeting at Rivanna Rifle and Pistol Club, Charlottesville, VA. It is located just 4 miles south of I-64 so it is easy to find and convenient for many in central and western Virginia.

We start the meeting with a potluck dinner and some fellowship. The main course is provided as are the drinks. We ask that those attending dinner bring a side dish or dessert to share. There is no charge for dinner, although contributions to VCDL or the VCDL-PAC are always welcome! If you are unable to bring a dish, please don't let that stop you from joining us. There is always plenty to go around!

We follow dinner with what always proves to be a lively discussion about gun rights in Virginia. Since the new laws take effect the first of July we will look at what the General Assembly passed last year and what is on the wish list for the coming legislative session.

Membership in VCDL or RRPC is NOT required to attend these meetings. In fact, we hope you will bring a friend or neighbor so that they can see for themselves what VCDL is all about. This is also an excellent opportunity to get a peek at the RRPC facilities. Again, we thank RRPC for hosting these meetings.

When: Tuesday, July 22, 2014
Time: Dinner 6:30 pm, Meeting 7:00 pm
Location: Rivanna Rifle & Pistol Club
1570 Old Lynchburg Road
Charlottesville, VA
Directions: From Interstate 64, take exit 120 SOUTH and travel 4 miles to range on right

RSVP: Pat.Webb@VCDL.org
Include the number of people eating dinner in the subject line
(example, 2 for dinner, 7/22 VCDL meeting)

3. Inexpensive .22 LR snap caps

I haven't tried this yet, but I plan to.


4. Petition to remove sound suppressors from the NFA list

Let's make Obama respond to this. It is indeed an idea whose time has come. With noise complaints about people legally shooting in their backyards or legally hunting, suppressors would make a big difference and should be readily available, like any other firearm accoutrement.


Sound suppressors are gaining popularity for a variety of reasons:

- Noise reduction.

- Hearing protection.

- Suppressors act as muzzle brakes/flash hiders without hurting an adjacent
shooter with muzzle blast and associated debris.

- Home defense; that is, not blowing out your ear drums in confined spaces
if firearm discharge is required for self-defense. Losing your hearing will
significantly reduce your situational awareness ability.

However, unnecessary restrictive federal government regulations on sound
suppressors deter purchasing and drives up retail costs. Additionally, in
the state of Virginia, the BATFE wait time for a sound suppressor NFA Tax
Stamp is 9 months.

Petition the Obama administration for the removal of sound suppressors as an
NFA regulated item. Removal would also eliminate the $200 tax stamp,
eliminate legality and travel issues between states, reduce hearing safety
concerns related to discharging firearms, and would reduce sound suppressor
retail costs by lifting restrictive government regulations.

Sign Petition here:

From: petitions.whitehouse.gov: http://tinyurl.com/ma79k86

Need 100,000 signatures forcing the White House to respond.
Petition closes 05 Aug 2014.

Additionally, contact your Congressional House Representative, Senator

5. Prepper's Festival celebrates survival, self-sufficiency

EM John Wilburn emailed me this. Despite the comment at the end of the article about the gun culture being foreign to the town, New Castle actually hosted the first annual Open-Carry Day last November 16th.


From roanoke.com: http://tinyurl.com/oyv5o5g

Prepper's Festival celebrates survival, self-sufficiency
Thousands of people — from organic gardeners to anti-government activists — flocked to New Castle to take part in the first ever Prepper's Festival.
by Tonia Moxley, The Roanoke Times
April 19, 2014

NEW CASTLE — The frontier-style buildings along Craig County's only main street recall the history of this once European pioneer outpost that boomed in the late 1800s around iron ore mining and the railroad, but then busted with the Great Depression of the 1930s.

The spirit of those first self-reliant settlers and gutsy outlaws seemed still present Saturday at the first New Castle Prepper's Festival.

In some ways, it felt like any small town spring festival featuring live music and barbecue and hot dog sellers. But the purveyors of commercial shipping containers meant for use as survival bunkers and the "Damsels in Defense" booth hawking pink stun guns and leopard print pepper spray set this event apart.

The nearly 1-year-old Craig County Business Association was looking for events that would bring people to downtown New Castle, which has been mostly empty in recent years, association Chairman Adam Gentry said.

Many towns have festivals that celebrate spring and other common themes. New Castle's annual Fall Festival is one such event, and it draws up to 8,000 people a year, Gentry said.

But the association wanted to add an original event that would make the town a destination.

Because Craig County is more rural than some of its neighbors, Gentry said many residents grow gardens, can and put up their own food, hunt and keep guns for protection, and make provisions to do without electricity for a few days if a storm takes the power out.

A festival celebrating emergency preparedness and self-reliance seemed a natural fit, he said.

Combine that with the growing interest in homesteading, urban agriculture, sustainability and energy efficiency, as well as the popularity of zombie apocalypse movies, and putting all that together might be a good way to attract visitors.

In the first hour of the festival, which began at 10 a.m., about 3,000 people had already shown up.

"It's way more than we expected," Gentry said.

The festival drew a varied crowd, putting organic and heirloom gardeners in the same two-block area as tea party and anti-government activists.

Some companies that were present, such as Solar Connexion, a Blacksburg-based photovoltaic installation company that's operated since 1993, had something to offer everyone. Solar Connexion is one of the installers working with the Solarize Blacksburg program.

Over the past few years, interest in solar systems has become "more and more urban," Walsh said. The company is doing work in urban centers like Charlottesville.

But the Prepper's Festival brought the company back to its roots in a way, owner Bryan Walsh said.

In the beginning, "the old school off-gridders were our bread and butter," Walsh said. "We're happy to be here."

Roanoke firearms instructor Joe Coty was there with his company, 11 Bravo Training, stressing the importance of education for responsible gun ownership.

One thing his classes teach is the proper mental approach to personal defense. Carrying a concealed handgun does not guarantee an effective response to an attacker, he said.

"Self-defense situations are stressful," Coty said. "It's a different situation than going to the range and standing there shooting at a stationary target."

Coty, who has been an avid competition shooter for about a decade and a firearms instructor for about three years, said people have become more interested in guns for personal protection.

"They want to be responsible for their own safety," Coty said. "They are the first responder."

Then there was Stephen Fischer, a military surplus vendor from Eggleston, whose booth featured a field medic brain surgery kit for $100.

Asked who would be interested in buying such a thing, Fischer said, "Apparently nobody."

"The government sold it to me," Fischer said. "And I'm trying to sell it."

The festival did bring in many people from out of town, according to Jane Echols Johnston, who was working the genealogy room at the Craig County Historical Society during the festival.

"I've only seen two or three people I know," she said. "The rest came from somewhere else."

Johnston's forebears came to Craig County in 1752, she said. And she has lived in the county for 50 years.

Although Johnston said she wishes there were more jobs in the county, she said when city people move to the area, they talk about how beautiful and peaceful it is, then immediately want to make it more like the place they came from.

About one in four men at the festival carried a handgun on his belt, and many wore the blaze orange "Guns Save Lives" stickers provided by members of the Virginia Citizen Defense League, a gun rights lobby group.

But that culture is largely foreign to Johnston, and to New Castle, she said.

"You would not normally see guns being carried around in this town."

6. Why can't rifles, carbines be returned?

Member Walter Jackson emailed me this:


From fredericksburg.com: http://tinyurl.com/ks53wvb

Why can't rifles, carbines be returned?
by Carl M.W. Grenn Sr.
April 21, 2014

Why can't rifles, carbines be returned?

What do the liberal, progressive politicians like [former New York City mayor Michael] Bloomberg, President Obama, Gov. McAuliffe and our two Virginia senators, Warner and Kaine, not understand about the U.S. constitutional right in the Second Amendment for Virginians and all U.S. citizens to keep and bear arms?

President Obama, by presidential order, stopped about 350,000 M1 rifles and carbines from coming back home to America. These weapons were made here and should be returned. By this order, he prevented many people from doing their jobs and disrupted our economy. As a Korean veteran, I, like many others, was looking forward to recovering a souvenir from the Korean War. Our two senators voted for the U.N. program to ban guns and interfere with our constitutional rights. I wrote Sen. Warner and he responded that the U.Ñ. proposal was for the purpose of stopping illegal trafficking of weapons. This is irrational, because no such law would stop the communist countries like China, Russia, North Korea and others from disobeying the law. Since the senators voted against Virginians and for the U.N., this is a valid reason for not re-electing either one.

A World War II story was told on television in an interview with a Japanese general who was asked, "When the U.S. was in a defenseless state after Pearl Harbor, why didn't you invade the U.S.?" His answer was "we knew that every home in America had a gun inside of it." Our Virginia historical ancestors knew what they were doing when they created "the right to keep and bear arms." It is too bad we don't have such forward-thinking politicians today.

7. NRA protesters: 'Honk to stop gun violence' [VIDEO]

Hilarious! Meet the intolerant, anti-liberty bigots. This video shows them in all their glory. ;-)

Member Bill Albritton emailed me this:


From breitbart.com: http://tinyurl.com/kd86by7 [VIDEO]

April 19, 2014

On April 17th, a group of protesters gathered outside NRA headquarters in Fairfax, Virginia, and held signs that read, "NRA: Bought and Paid for in Blood" and "Honk to Stop Gun Violence," among other things.

Media Research Center's Dan Joseph interviewed the protesters, one of whom also supported "knife control" and another who answered "no" when asked if citizens should be able to use a weapon to protect themselves when under attack. The protester contended that "only a law enforcement officer should be allowed to use weapons."

Another lady held a sign that said, "Background checks save lives."

But as Breitbart News has reported, Army Spc. Ivan Lopez (Ft. Hood, April 2nd), Karl Halverson Pierson (Arapahoe High gunman), Aaron Alexis (D.C. Navy Yard gunman), Paul Anthony Ciancia (LAX gunman), James Holmes (Aurora movie theater gunman), and Nidal Hasan (Ft. Hood, November 2009) all went through background checks before committing their heinous crimes and taking innocent lives.

8. The first amendment guide to the second amendment

EM Dave Hicks emailed me this:


From washingtonpost.com: http://tinyurl.com/kunegvs

The First Amendment Guide to the Second Amendment
by David Kopel
April 21, 2014

Back in 1995, the Tennessee Law Review published a symposium issue on the Second Amendment and firearms policy. That symposium was probably the most influential law review symposium ever published on the topic. (More on that issue, below.) This year, the Tennessee Law Review is doing another Second Amendment symposium. My contribution to the forthcoming issue is The First Amendment Guide to the Second Amendment.

As the article explains, post-Heller courts have frequently looked to the First Amendment for guidance on Second Amendment questions. This is sensible, because since the Supreme Court began taking the First Amendment seriously about 75 years ago, a rich body of precedent has been developed. The First and Second Amendments both safeguard natural, pre-existing human rights, whereas Amendments 4-8 are mainly controls on particular government processes, and Amendments 9-10 are interpretive rules.

Part I of the article explains how the Supreme Court in Heller and McDonald used First Amendment tools and analogies to help resolve Second Amendment issues. This was consistent with several earlier Supreme Court cases, which treated the First and Second Amendments in pari materia.

Part II of details how the influential lower court decisions of Ezell v. Chicago (7th Cir.) and Heller II (D.C. Cir.) have followed (or misapplied) the Supreme Court's First/Second Amendment teaching.

In Part III, I argue that the First and Second Amendments share several common interpretive principles. These are:

The Amendment Is Not Limited to Its Core. First Amendment free speech/press is not only about politics, and the Second Amendment is not only about self-defense.

The First and Second Amendments Have Synecdoches. "Press" means more than just printing presses, and "arms" includes more than just weapons.

Rights That Are Not Expressly Stated May Be Inferred from Other Rights—Examples Include the Right of Association and the Right of Self-Defense. Both Amendments protect non-textual rights whose existence is readily inferred from the text.

Not All Original Practices Are Per Se Constitutional Today. Laws against blasphemy or seditious libel are clear examples in the First Amendment context. They warn us to not accept uncritically every possible municipal gun law from the Founding Era.

Both Amendments Accommodate Technological Change. The First Amendment applies to the modern press (e.g., television and blogs), and the Second Amendment applies to modern firearms and accessories.

Both Amendments Aim for the Preservation or Restoration of Ordered Liberty and Civic Virtue. They seek to cultivate virtuous, responsible, and self-controlled citizens who will use their rights to improve the moral character of themselves and of the public, and who will preserve constitutionally ordered liberty.

Guns and newspapers are not like movies of men having sex with sheep. A point that is perhaps more obvious to the general public than to legal academia.

Part IV examines the application of particular First Amendment doctrines to the Second Amendment. Some of these doctrines are an easy fit: Courts should strike legislation whose purpose was to suppress the exercise of a constitutional right. Courts should be especially vigilant against vague laws which may chill the exercise of rights. "Less restrictive means" and "overbreadth" should be used when assessing the constitutionality of particular restriction. Minors have fewer rights than adults, but the minors may not be categorically prohibited from exercising First or Second Amendment rights.

The most notable First Amendment doctrine which does not transpose to the Second Amendment is the rule against prior restraints. Heller has clearly stated that laws prohibiting gun possession by convicted felons are presumptively constitutional. In the First Amendment, this would be an invalid prior restraint. (E.g., a law stating that someone convicted of libel, obscenity, or of revealing troop movements in wartime could not write newspaper articles in the future.) In the Second Amendment, this is not unconstitutional, according to modern precedent.

Instead, courts should follow the teachings of the Supreme Court cases that have allowed limited prior restraints on some forms of speech: the restraint must last no longer than necessary; there must be a speedy process for the initial decision and for review; and the final determination must be made by a neutral decision-maker, preferably a court under a de novo standard.

The foreword to the Tennessee symposium is written by Glenn Reynolds: The Second Amendment as Ordinary Constitutional Law. His essay examines the intellectual re-discovery of the Second Amendment by the legal academy and the courts during the late 20th century, following the Burger Court period of ignoring the right to arms.

As for the 1995 symposium, some of the articles are available at the Second Amendment Law Library section of www.guncite.com. The article with the most enduring relevance is probably Stephen Halbrook's Congress Interprets the Second Amendment: Declarations by a Co-Equal Branch on the Individual Right to Keep and Bear Arms. Halbrook details various congressional legislation to expressly protect the individual Second Amendment right to arms. The Halbrook article was the first to discuss the 1941 Property Requisition Act, which expressly forbade the seizure or registration of firearms for national defense.

Don Kates, Henry Schaffer, John Lattimer, George Murray, and Edwin Cassem wrote a huge article, Guns and Public Health: Epidemic of Violence or Pandemic of Propaganda? which deconstructed the "public health" argument for gun prohibition, and some of the very poor-quality research on it which had been funded with tax dollars.

Finally, there was Glenn Reynolds's A Critical Guide to the Second Amendment. Reynolds summarized the "standard model" that had become the norm among most (although not all) Second Amendment scholars; the standard model would later be adopted by Heller: The Second Amendment guarantees the right of the individual to own and carry firearms, including handguns. The right aims to promote the militia, but the right is not dependent on the militia. Some non-prohibitory regulations are constitutional. (Reynolds offered his own list of such controls, but whether he was right about any particular item on the list is less important than his general point that the Second Amendment does not forbid all gun control.)

Also in the 1995 issue was an article by Clayton Cramer and me, "Shall Issue": The New Wave of Concealed Handgun Permit Laws. We did a before/after study of states which had enacted Right to Carry laws, and found that there was usually a notable decline in homicide, compared to national rates. However, our simple study has been supplanted by much more sophisticated studies after 1995.

9. Personal safety and awareness tips for hikers

Guns are not good for self-defense, so says the National Park Service (NPS). That comes as a surprise to their own armed police and security guards, I'm sure.

Jeff Smith of Ohio RKBA emailed me this:


Given VCDL's fantastic work on NPS carry, I thought you would be interested in these words of discouragement on the subject of firearm carry:

(under the subject of "Defensive Weapons on the trail"

"...Along with any distance hikers and the Appalachian Trail Conservancy, we discourage the carrying of firearms (see the Conservancy's website for additional information about trail safety). The threat of firearms being turned against you or an accidental shooting outweighs the benefit. An increased presence of firearms could also change the culture of the Trail..."

From nps.gov: http://tinyurl.com/k6aqz5l

10. Homemade guns: legal, unregistered and can kill [VIDEO]

Well, unregistered swimming pools and registered cars are both legal and dangerous,too.

From abcnews.go.com: http://tinyurl.com/lsjhgbq

11. Firearm silencer/suppressor sales skyrocket

Member Bill Albritton emailed me this:

These are perfectly legal in Virginia, and they can be obtained directly with LEO signature (by the way, the supposed anti-gun new Sheriff in Fairfax County has not changed the one-week procedure for returning an ATF form with their LEO signature - painless - no fee) or via Trust. [PVC: Good to hear about the Fairfax Sheriff.]

Wait times for return of the tax stamp have basically tripled in the last four years with the increase in demand. The website www.nfatracker.com has real data for these.

In Europe where firearms are generally more tightly regulated than here, suppressors are unregulated, and in some places, it's even considered bad form to shoot without one (disturbs the neighbors, etc.).

An interesting note: suppressors affect the path of the bullet, an often over-looked aspect of these accessories. It can be challenging to be as accurate with a suppressed firearm, unless it is an integrally-suppressed model.


From breitbart.com: http://tinyurl.com/kskcakk

April 22, 2014

Sales of firearm silencers/suppressors climbed 37% in 2013 over what they were in 2012.

CNN Money reports that "nearly half a million" silencers/suppressors were sold in 2013, up from 360,000 in 2012 and 285,000 in 2011.

Gun industry analyst Ben Shim said, "People have gone crazy buying guns, but they're done buying them for the time being, so they're buying accessories."

Shim referenced the number of AR-15s that were sold amid the gun control push following the heinous crime at Sandy Hook Elementary. He said, "The AR-15 weapons platform is very modular. It's a Barbie for men."

SilencerCo chief finance officer Jason Schauble indicated the spike in purchases means more people are realizing you can legally own a silencer in many states. He said, "Most people just don't know you can buy [one]."

On April 10th Breitbart News reported on silencers/suppressors, which are legal in nearly 40 states.

Getting one involves a background check, a wait period, registration of the silencer, and the purchase of a federal stamp (tax) to own the device.

12. Do guns save lives?

Board Member Bruce Jackson emailed me this:


From theblaze.com: http://tinyurl.com/n392ngm

Do Guns Save Lives? Here's How These High-Profile Conservatives Plan to Prove Definitively the Answer Is 'Yes'
by Jason Howerton
April 22, 2014

Author, economist and researcher John Lott announced on Wednesday that he is creating a new research center to "advance the scientific understanding of the relationship between laws regulating the ownership or use of guns, crime and public safety."

The Crime Prevention Research Center will seek to educate the "public, journalists and policy makers" by countering "bogus" anti-gun studies with "high-quality peer-reviewed academic studies."

There is currently a fundraising campaign underway to jumpstart the research center. Without much publicity, the campaign has raised nearly $3,000 of its $300,000 goal — with 50 days left.

Best-selling author Brad Thor told TheBlaze on Tuesday that the CPRC is "really important for liberty and the Second Amendment," so he decided to support the initiative in a big way.

The first person who donates $10,000 or more to the CPRC fundraising campaign will actually get to name a character in Thor's next thriller, scheduled to be released in summer of 2015.

Rocker Ted Nugent, who like Thor is a CPRC board member, is also offering backstage passes to one of his concerts to donors who give $5,000 or more. Those donors will also get the chance to talk with Nugent about the Second Amendment.

In a YouTube video released on Monday and uploaded on the CPRC fundraising page, Lott explained that after decades of research, he has learned that "allowing people to go and protect themselves saves lives, deters criminals from attacking."

He said people like former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, billionaire investor George Soros and President Barack Obama are spending hundreds of millions of dollars to produce "bogus academic studies" to scare people into not owning guns. Bloomberg recently announced a $50 million anti-gun campaign to battle the National Rifle Association.

"There's only so much that I can do by myself," Lott added. "That is the reason why myself and other advocates have put together the Crime Prevention Research Center to try and do quality academic research to go and look at these issues and try to show with real numbers what is best for trying to go and protect people and save their lives."

13. Inteliscope targeting device for android/apple phones

To see the pictures and captions in the article below, you will need to click on the story's link.

Member Walter Jackson emailed me this:


From gunsamerica.com: http://tinyurl.com/mtwhvp6

APRIL 11, 2014

By Paul Helinski
InteliScope, LLC

This is a cup-half-full, cup-half-empty product. It all depends on the way you look at it. First of all, what is InteliSCOPE? InteliSCOPE is a smartphone holder that mounts on your picatinny rail, allowing you to use your phone as a sighting scope while providing you the ability to record video. The mount physically holds your phone on the top of the rifle, and a standard Google Play or Apple Store app does the sighting through the camera on your phone. We tried the Android version with a Samsung Galaxy S4, and it does what it says it does, with a few important caveats.

First, the hardware itself is not a clip. It is a screw-adjustable squeezing mechanism with rubber feet to hold the phone securely. We found that the phone moves in the mount unless you really tighten it down tight. Do you want to do this? You could damage your case or crack your screen. The newest models come with cases for iPhones, and you could technically use this model we tested with a case, but you are still squeezing the outside of your phone. I'm not sure that is worth the potential trouble compared to just buying a separate GoPro or Contour camera that is made specifically for weapon mount.

The InteliSCOPE software app is not as dicey as the hardware but not perfect either. Please see the pictures and captions below. The InteliSCOPE gun mount is $99 or $169 for the one we have pictured here. The app is free. You can download it from your Play store now. Just search for InteliSCOPE with one "l", not two, or the wrong one comes up.

14. GA Governor sign's 'unprecedented' bill expanding gun rights

Member Bill Albritton emailed me this:


From foxnews.com: http://tinyurl.com/k9cw8rm

Georgia governor signs 'unprecedented' bill expanding gun rights
by FoxNews.com
April 23, 2014

Georgia Gov. Nathan Deal on Wednesday signed legislation significantly expanding gun rights in the state.

The bill, described by the National Rifle Association's lobbying arm as "the most comprehensive pro-gun reform legislation introduced in recent state history," expands the scope of public places where licensed owners are allowed to carry firearms.

The bill makes several changes to state law. It allows those with a license to carry to bring a gun into a bar without restriction and into some government buildings that don't have certain security measures. It also allows religious leaders to decide whether it's OK for a person with a carry license to bring a gun into their place of worship.

Democrats resisted the proposal, although they conceded it would pass in the GOP-dominated House of Representatives. They argued that allowing guns in more places will not make society safer and may lead to more deaths.

Under the bill, school districts would now be able, if they wanted, to allow some employees to carry a firearm under certain conditions. The bill also eliminates the fingerprinting requirement for renewing weapons carry licenses.

According to the Marietta Daily Journal, the legislation prohibits the state from creating and maintaining a database of licensed weapons carriers and repeals the state-required license for firearms dealers.

Colin Goddard, who survived the 2007 campus shooting at Virginia Tech, told Georgia Public Broadcasting he's alarmed by a provision that waives criminal prosecution of felons who use illegal firearms in the act of self-defense.

"The stand your ground expansion is truly a new type of stand your ground as we know it," Goddard said. "To expand it in such a way to remove all carrying or possession offenses is really unprecedented."

Jerry Henry of GeorgiaCarry.org told GPB News he doesn't expect to see a surge in gun sales or an increase in gun-related businesses in the state. He noted that other states have far less restrictive gun laws than Georgia.

"I don't think people are going to look at it and say, 'Oh Georgia just passed a new law and I'm going to move over there because it's so much easier.' I don't think we're going to see that," he said. "Arizona, Wyoming, Alaska, Vermont – they all have Constitutional Carry."

15. [NY] Assault rifle found in pile of trash

Bill Albritton emailed me this:


"Smith and Wesson .22 caliber M&P 15-22 assault rifle."

Since when is a .22 an assault rifle?! I guess because it "looks mean."

From syracuse.com: http://tinyurl.com/mhj8cxk

Assault rifle found in pile of trash on Syracuse's West Side, police say
by Ken Sturtz
April 18, 2014

SYRACUSE, N.Y. -- The Onondaga County Sheriff's Office is investigating after deputies discovered an assault rifle in a pile of trash on the city's West Side.

At about 7 p.m. Thursday evening deputies assigned to Operation IMPACT conducted a routine patrol on the West Side of the city of Syracuse. They found a large pile of trash and other debris near the backyard of an abandoned house on Putnam Street, the sheriff's office said.

In the middle of the pile of trash, under some roofing material, the deputies discovered an unloaded Smith and Wesson .22 caliber M&P 15-22 assault rifle.

The sheriff's office said the owner of the rifle still hasn't been found and that there was no one in the immediate area when the rifle was found.

Authorities are testing the rifle for ballistics and latent fingerprints.

Operation IMPACT is an initiative of the state Division of Criminal Justice Services that supports crime reduction initiatives in the 17 counties outside New York City that account for about 80 percent of the crime in upstate New York and Long Island.

The sheriff's office said it is continuing to investigate.

16. [NY] Officials argue for flexibility with gun law violators...

Member Max Padon emailed me this:


I know that you closely follow all things gun, but I have not seen in the VA-ALERT any mention of this matter: a NYC police officer detained in India for having a few rounds of ammunition in his luggage. He did no harm, and there is no indication that he had any malicious intent.

This is a story similar to those we have heard regularly of "innocent" persons being caught up in New York, New Jersey, and the People's Republic of DC. The difference in this story is that people you would expect to be yelling, "lock him up and throw away the key," are taking the opposite tack.

There have been a number of stories about this incident, but this one best discusses the hypocrisy of Schumer, et al, defending the officer.

Heck, I don't think the guy did anything wrong, (although I think there is more chance that he knew what he was doing then some people who have been caught in New York, New Jersey, and DC.) I would let him go, and say, "Know the law, dummy, next time it won't be so easy."

From dailycaller.com: http://tinyurl.com/mfhclbq

New York officials argue for flexibility with gun law violators… As long as they're on the city's payroll
April 14, 2014

Some of New York's most strident gun control advocates have rushed to the defense of an unwitting traveler who was arrested at an airport for a technical violation of a draconian gun law. Has a new era of sanity arrived in the Big Apple? Not really. This defendant happens to be an NYPD officer who is alleged to have violated India's strict firearm regulations.

On March 10th, NYPD Officer Manny Encarnacion was arrested when officials at the airport in New Delhi discovered three rounds of ammunition in his baggage. New York City's NBC affiliate reports that Encarnacion had been to the shooting range before his trip and put three rounds into a jacket pocket. Encarnacion later packed that jacket, forgetting that it contained the ammunition. Since his arrest, he has not been allowed to leave India and faces charges that could land him seven years in prison.

Encarnacion's detainment has turned into somewhat of an international incident between officials in New York and India. New York City Mayor Bill de Blasio expressed support for the officer and suggested that the Indian government may have had an ulterior reason for the arrest. Rep. Peter King (R-N.Y.) wrote a letter to Secretary of State John Kerry, in which he states, "This excessive act by the Indian government is clearly politically motivated," and alleges that the incident is retaliation for the December 2013 arrest of an Indian official in New York. The New York Daily News reports that Sen. Charles Schumer (D-N.Y.) has also lent his support to the stranded officer, remarking, "I would hope that India, a country that we have a good relationship with, would not stoop to the petty level of making a political pawn of this decorated NYPD cop and veteran." [PVC: New York stoops low regularly with good people who inadvertently break New York's draconian gun laws. And you better believe that politics plays a roll in that pettiness, too.]

These three staunch gun control proponents apparently don't have a highly-developed sense of irony or of their own breathtaking hypocrisy. New York City has been engaged in a longstanding effort to persecute travelers that mistakenly violate the City's unusually harsh firearm laws or commit the "offense" of believing an out-of-state permit will be recognized in New York. These visitors often face a felony charge that mandates a minimum three and a half year sentence if convicted. The persecution of these peaceful and otherwise law-abiding persons who, like Encarnacion, pose no threat to public safety, is entirely politically motivated.

Year after year, dozens of travelers unfamiliar with New York's byzantine gun laws have been arrested at New York's Kennedy and LaGuardia airports, even when complying with a federal law designed to protect those lawfully transporting unloaded firearms. The City is aware of the federal law, but treats it as an "affirmative defense" to be raised before a court. In other words, the attitude of the mayor and police department for those who stand on their rights under the federal law is to arrest them for technical violations of local regulations and then let the accused, "Tell it to the judge." Even if the case is later dismissed, as it often is, the traveler is still subjected to an embarrassing, inconvenient, intimidating, and expensive ordeal.

A June 9, 2013 New York Times article cites a number of incidents where overzealous enforcement at New York's airports has ensnared travelers, ranging from the case of a military wife and mother to that of a professional football player. Martin D. Kane, a defense attorney who has handled these types of cases described for the Times the treatment a mistaken traveler can expect, stating, "They're locked up the same as anybody else on any other felony charge… . People's lives are really, really disrupted, as you can imagine."

An Associated Press article from March tells a similar story, placing the number of travelers charged at the New York airports in 2013 at 25. Illustrating the significant difference in flexibility exhibited by New York officials in Encarnacion's case versus that of the average traveler, Queens Executive District Attorney Robert J. Masters told the AP, "There is, frankly, an element of irresponsibility… . They've travelled. They realize that licenses are different around the country… . They still have this fear, even though this is the safest big city in America, and they think, I'm going to bring the gun with me just in case."

New York City visitors unfamiliar with local laws don't fare any better outside the City's airports. A January 27, 2012 South Bend Tribune article chronicles the story of former Marine Ryan Jerome, who was arrested in 2011 while in line at the Empire State Building after he attempted to check his pistol with a security guard. Jerome had erroneously thought that his Indiana carry permit was valid in New York. The Marine spent 48 hours in jail following the arrest. After several months of legal wrangling, Jerome plead to a misdemeanor and was sentenced with a $1000 fine and community service. Another notable case is that of Meredith Graves, a nurse and Tennessee tourist who was arrested following an attempt to check a pistol with security at the 9/11 Memorial.

While the newly found ability of de Blasio, et al., to recognize an honest mistake when they see one strikes us in this case as typically self-serving, we can agree with them on this much. India's detainment of Encarnacion, whether motivated by politics or a severe intolerance for the NYPD officer's undoubtedly honest mistake, is an injustice. The charges should be dismissed, and he should be swiftly returned to the U.S.

Yet this incident should serve as a lesson to New York officials about how even harmless, well-intentioned travelers can inadvertently run afoul of an unfamiliar jurisdiction's gun laws, especially when those laws are unaccustomedly broad. The lesson is even more important when the violation results in no harm, and the law is enforced despite extenuating circumstances or legal protections to the contrary. In the future, de Blasio and his prosecution-happy cohorts should ensure the understanding and consideration they have shown to Encarnacion is also extended to other law-abiding travelers who find themselves in similar predicaments when visiting New York City itself.

17. [IL] At least 8 dead, 44 wounded in weekend shootings

Member Mark Shinn emailed me this:


What a surprise! Gun control continues to be a spectacular failure in Chicago.

From chicago.cbslocal.com: http://tinyurl.com/kqlpp94

At Least 8 Dead, 44 Wounded In Weekend Shootings
April 21, 2014

CHICAGO (CBS) – Police Supt. Garry McCarthy said a bloody holiday weekend that saw at least eight people shot and killed and dozens others wounded "doesn't wipe out" reductions in violent crime in the past two years.

Since Friday evening, at least eight people were shot and killed in Chicago, and at least 44 others were wounded, police said

"This doesn't wipe out what has happened over the last two years, and this is a conversation that we've had time and time again," Police Supt. Garry McCarthy said Monday morning. "There's no magic formula here. We have a plan, we have a strategy, and it's hard work. That's what it is. … It's a day-by-day, minute-by-minute grind, and we're into busy season. That's what it is."

Although murders in Chicago spiked to 516 in 2012 – only the second time homicides surpassed 500 since 2003 – they dropped to 415 last year, the lowest murder total for Chicago in nearly 50 years.

The superintendent said the vast majority of shootings in Chicago are gang-related, and detectives were working to determine "which of the hot conflicts" were to blame for the most recent spate of violence.

Mayor Rahm Emanuel said addressing the violence isn't just about what the police do but what the schools, community groups and parents do to instill values in their children.

"You can't do this just by discussing how many police we have and counting heads. You can't do this by figuring out many kids are in after school. We have to do all of that and more and we all know we have tough budgets," said Emanuel.

Among those killed were two men who were slain Sunday afternoon in the South Lawndale neighborhood. The victims were sitting in a Lincoln Navigator near the corner of 28th Street and Sawyer Avenue around 1 p.m., when an orange Hummer blocked their path. Two people wearing masks and armed with guns exited the Hummer, and sprayed the Navigator with nearly a dozen bullets, right near a police "blue light" camera.

Two men — 32-year-old Juan Ocon, and 19-year-old Timmy Bermudez — were shot and killed.

The Hummer fled south on Sawyer Avenue after the shooting. The Navigator also drove off, but was found a short time later at the corner of 24th Street and Kedzie Avenue, police said. Ocon was pronounced dead at the scene. Bermudez died less than an hour later at Mount Sinai Hospital.

Earlier Sunday, a married couple, both law enforcement officers, were killed in an apparent murder-suicide at their home on the Southwest Side. Authorities said Cook County corrections Officer Javier Acevedo, 50, shot and killed his wife, 49-year-old Chicago police officer Veronica Acevedo, at their home in the 5300 block of South Austin Avenue.

Veronica Acevedo was an 18-year veteran of the Chicago Police Department, and had won 23 commendations during her career. Javier Acevedo was a 25-year veteran of the Cook County Sheriff's Department.

Also killed over the weekend were two teens found dead around 10:30 a.m. Saturday in an apartment building in the 8200 block of South Houston Avenue. Jordan Means, 16, and Anthony Bankhead, 18, both had been shot in the head. Means' mother said the boys were killed over a dispute that played out on Facebook.

"An argument led to this, that's crazy," said Camille Cochran, 42. "Now, I don't have my son no more."

The other victims of fatal shootings over the weekend included 4e-year-old Darren Rey, who was killed Saturday morning in an alley in the 2900 block of West Flournoy; 19-year-old Nicholas Ramirez, who was killed early Saturday in the 1600 block of West Hubbard Street, after someone in another vehicle shot him during a chase; and 20-year-old Trevolous Pickett, who was killed Friday night in a gangway in the 5200 block of West Congress Parkway.

Eugene Andrews, 37, has been charged in connection with the murder of Darren Rey.

It was the second weekend in a row at least 36 people were shot in Chicago.

Asked how a spike in gun violence affects his department's approach to fighting violent crime, McCarthy said "we can do things to improve what's happening, but until such time as we get some help with the gun laws in the state of Illinois, we're up against it. We're drinking from a firehose."

McCarthy repeatedly has urged state lawmakers to enact mandatory minimum sentences for repeat gun offenders. He has said "lax state and federal gun laws" hamper the department's ability to reduce gun violence, by allowing repeat offenders to stay on the streets.

Last year, the Emanuel administration backed a proposal to raise the mandatory minimum sentence for aggravated unlawful use of a weapon from one to three years, and require offenders to serve 85 percent of their sentences — a "truth in sentencing" provision.

In November, sponsors removed language that would impose the new mandatory minimum on first-time offenders, but the measure was sent back to committee in December, and has yet to move forward since.

VA-ALERT is a project of the Virginia Citizens Defense League, Inc.
(VCDL). VCDL is an all-volunteer, non-partisan grassroots organization
dedicated to defending the human rights of all Virginians. The Right to
Keep and Bear Arms is a fundamental human right.

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