Judge Upholds California Gun Microstamping Law

Herschel Smith · 01 Mar 2015 · 13 Comments

CBS Sacramento: A federal court has rejected a challenge to California’s gun safety law, possibly paving the way for a requirement that new guns mark the bullets they fire so they can be traced. The ruling on Wednesday was a defeat for two gun rights groups that argued the Unsafe Handgun Act violated the constitutional right to bear arms. The law prohibits the manufacture or sale in California of any gun that doesn’t meet certain safety requirements. It was aimed at outlawing cheap…… [read more]

Winchester SPX Shotgun Recall: Guns May Unintentionally Fire

BY Herschel Smith
1 day, 17 hours ago

In Defense In Depth In Firearms Design And Operation, I explained:

This is why I have always been an advocate of professional engineering registration for firearms designers.  It has nothing to do with supposed qualifications to become a PE, but the legal liability associated with the license.  I can speak from experience.  This legal liability means something special and particular, and you want it in firearms design, whether you know it or not.

You want to follow all of the rules of safety, but you also want firearms that operate as intended because of the fidelity of the design.  Malfunctions because of poor design or fabrication aren’t acceptable, because this defeats the design and operational philosophy of defense in depth.  Yes, follow the rules, and yes, you should be able to rely on well designed products.

It isn’t “either-or.”  It is “both-and.”

And we are presented with an example that precisely demonstrates what I said.

Winchester Repeating Arms has issued a recall on some of its SXP-model 12-gauge shotguns that the company says may fire while the discharge is being closed.

A YouTube video is making its way around the Internet showing a gun owner seemingly demonstrating the flaw with the gun’s safety on, although Winchester has not officially confirmed that the video is related (see video below).

Winchester issued the following recall:

“Winchester Repeating Arms has discovered that a limited number of SXP (3½-inch chamber) shotguns (also called the Super X Pump) may, under certain circumstances, unintentionally discharge while closing the action. Failure to return any affected shotguns for inspection and/or repair may create a risk of harm, including serious personal injury or death.

“If you own one of the following firearms, please immediately contact our Winchester Consumer Administrative Center to find out if your firearm is affected and should be returned. Please be prepared to provide the serial number of your firearm.”

Guns listed under the recall include are the Waterfowl Hunter (26- or 28-inch barrel), Black Shadow (26- or 28-inch barrel), Turkey Hunter (24-inch barrel) and Long Beard (24-inch barrel).

The relevant video is below.

It’s best that Winchester is getting on top of this and issuing the recall.  I hope they take full responsibility for the design deficiency.  It would be more than Remington did with the 700 series trigger problems.

Idaho Police Shoot Pregnant Woman In The Stomach With AR-15

BY Herschel Smith
1 day, 17 hours ago

MintPress News:

The dashboard and body camera footage has now been released in the fatal shooting of Jeanetta Riley. Riley, 35, was shot and killed by Sandpoint, Idaho police after they were called to a hospital where she had been treated for mental health problems.

The department has cleared its officers “of any criminal wrongdoing,” claiming that they followed all proper procedures when they chose to use an AR-15 assault rifle on the mentally ill, pregnant woman who was holding a knife outside of the hospital.

The officers could have used less-than-lethal weapons, like a taser, but instead they chose not only a firearm, but an AR-15 when they approached her outside of Bonner General Hospital.

The police can be heard on the video telling Riley to show her hands.

Riley, obviously mentally distressed, replied: “f*** you” and “bring it on!”

After shots ran out, the officer ran to Riley but instead of applying first aid, he cuffed her.
The policeman is then heard running to Ms Riley, lying injured in the road.

Bonner County prosecutor Barry McHugh said: “Officers were faced with a quickly evolving set of circumstances that left them convinced the Ms Riley had the intent to use the knife to do them great bodily harm and had the ability to do so.”

Ms Riley’s ex-husband, Dana Maddox, is suing the city for $1 million, as the officers ended his wife’s life as well as her pregnancy with Maddox’s daughter.

The autopsy report reveals that Riley was shot in the chest and hit in the liver as well as her shoulder, back and heart. The Magic Valley Times News explains that “Five shots were fired during the confrontation, three of which came from Valenzuela’s AR-15 rifle and two of which came from Ziegler’s .40-caliber Glock pistol.”

Hey, I have an idea for the cowards in this department.  How about using OC spray and letting her surrender peaceably (as she surely would have)?  Or better yet, how about talking to her?  What’s wrong with talking?

Notes From HPS

BY Herschel Smith
1 day, 17 hours ago

David Codrea:

“Terri and I made a decision to put this deal together [to] attempt to reconstruct our family’s lives,” Rick Reese noted, explaining to this column why a settlement attempt could spell the end of four years of torment and uncertainty wherein the family has received insufficient outside assistance to press on. Barring surprises from the government reneging on agreements to bring the matter to closure, that reconstruction may be forthcoming.

Hey, if you’re fighting the behemoth of the federal government, this is about as good as it’s going to get.  It occurs to me that the government doesn’t need the weapons, and they don’t need the proceeds from the sale of the weapons.  They are doing this for vengeance and spite.

David also gives us the following practical note: “Sometimes real life calls. I was out all day yesterday taking care of other business, and unless somebody comes over and volunteers to do my first yard work of Spring for me, I have some rich, full days ahead of me this weekend.”  He ends with this: “The thought of sitting under the trees later this afternoon with a book, a beer and a stogie after I finish up today’s labors seems pretty attractive.”  Yes, to all of the above.  I know how David feels.  I am in the middle of a difficult move down the road a piece, and the time it takes to fix every little problem with the house, close on two loans, perform inspections of the new house, and on and on the pain goes, is about to kill me.  Please be patient with my lack of posts as well.

Mike is in Colorado.  Pray for his success and safety.

Via Mike, Bob Owens doesn’t like the tactical aspects of open carry.  I’ve seen this argument before, and I don’t buy it but I don’t begrudge the belief.  If someone wants to conceal, that’s just fine with me.  But what I don’t like about Bob’s argument is that he seems to blame the crime on the fact of open carry, as if the primary cause of the sin was an innocent person openly carrying a weapon.  Of course, that’s a stupid position if Bob is actually saying that.  God will by no means leave the guilty unpunished (Ex 34:7, Num 14:18).

You mean to tell me we don’t have universal background checks on aerosol cans, sledge hammers and canes?  I’m astonished!  I told you this sort of thing would happen, and I demand Congressional action on assault hammers.

Texas Police Chiefs On Open Carry

BY Herschel Smith
5 days, 15 hours ago

The title is a little bit of a misnomer (since the article focuses on one chief) but follows the title at KXAN.com:

CEDAR PARK, Texas (KXAN) — At McBride’s Guns in Central Austin, gun sales are up in advance of an open carry law potentially being passed at the state Capitol. But Cedar Park Police Chief Sean Mannix says there are several unanswered questions attached to the law.

“What are the requirements of open carry, what about proof of eligibility?” he said. “Will people have to carry it with them?”

All 84 of his officers attend training on a daily basis for a variety of reasons, and even more training will be required if the bill passes.

“I will say that’s just a reality,” said Mannix. “It is going to be difficult for the beat cop to know who should have a gun, who shouldn’t have a gun, and frankly there are people out there who shouldn’t own guns.”

Mannix also serves as the chair of the Texas Association of Police Chiefs. He worries open carry could make situations, like ones involving an active shooter, more dangerous.

“The last thing you want to see is somebody with a gun who’s not a police officer at an active shooter situation not immediately responding to commands to drop their weapon and get on the ground,” the chief said.

The Chief has raised two different issues in the same breath.  The first issue has to do with proof of eligibility, and I told you this would be a problem.

… licensed open carry in a state with no stop and identify statute for enforcement is a shooting-by-cop waiting to happen.  And I certainly don’t support empowering the police state any more by giving them a stop and identify statute.  That would be making something bad even worse.

Gun rights advocates are better off to hold out for constitutional carry rather than begging for scraps that fall from the master’s table.

I didn’t say give Texas LEOs a stop and identify statute.  I said give the citizens of Texas recognition of their constitutional rights with un-permitted open carry.

The second issue the Chief raises has to do with situations of responses.  He said, “The last thing you want to see is somebody with a gun who’s not a police officer at an active shooter situation not immediately responding to commands to drop their weapon and get on the ground.”

Why does he think this is going to be a problem?  First of all, the situation is likely to be mitigated by the time LEOs get there if there are carriers in the area, and whether they are open carriers or concealed carriers isn’t relevant to the question (there are concealed carriers all over Texas and always have been).  So what problems has the Chief seen that he thinks will get worse because of some unstated characteristic of open carriers?  My suspicion is that there are no problems the Chief can cite because he is using boogey-man arguments.  Boo!  Boo!  Be askeerd!

In the end we all know the truth, and it is that constitutional carry, concealed or open, is the best option because it comports with the rights God has granted to men and women.  The politicians and LEOs in Texas have apparently yet to learn (or acknowledge) that.

Cop Refused Treatment For Carrying Gun In Hospital

BY Herschel Smith
6 days, 14 hours ago

Mansfield News Journal:

Officer safety is a chief concern in the streets, but now some are questioning it at care facilities, too.

Two months ago, Plymouth officer Wayne Liggett Sr. said he was denied treatment at Walk In Urgent Care, 1341 S. Trimble Road, because he was carrying his duty weapon. Even after it was verified he was a police officer and legally within right to carry his firearm, he was asked to leave, he said.

Eyesight problems brought him to the clinic Feb. 8.

The officer, who has been in law enforcement for 33 years, said he was seeing floaters and flashes of light in his vision and knew something wasn’t right. He called ahead to the urgent care to ensure they had equipment to view the eye.

In a private room, an employee asked him to remove his jacket to take his vitals. As a courtesy, Liggett said he told the person he was carrying his duty weapon under his shirt, in case they would see it. He also had written down on the sign-in form he was employed as a Plymouth police officer, he said.

The employee took his vitals, said the doctor would be in soon and left.

The next knock at the door Liggett didn’t expect.

Several Mansfield Police Department officers told him to come out slowly with his hands up. More than one of them were pointing their firearm at him, he said.

Liggett said he was placed in handcuffs while police verified his identity as an auxiliary officer, which took only minutes. He was carrying his badge and ID in his wallet.

Mansfield police did not file an official report on the incident. The only documentation on the matter is an event report showing dispatch logs.

But after releasing him and returning his .45 Smith and Wesson, Liggett was told the staff still refused to treat him, and he was escorted from the building. There was no sign at the facility denying concealed carry, Liggett said.

He called his eye doctor and had an appointment the next day, where he found out he had a tear in his right retina. He was in surgery by the end of the week.

On Monday, he undergoes a second surgery on the same eye for cataracts.

“They were very unprofessional with how they treated me,” Liggett said. “Something could have been seriously wrong.”

Urgent care owner Muzhar Hussain declined to comment.

The incident was cause for concern for Plymouth Police Chief Charles Doan. He questioned how other law enforcement officers will be treated in an emergency and whether the urgent care mishap was an isolated incident.

“Officers carry to be prepared, and citizens do too,” Doan said. “If you have a concealed carry and get hurt, are they going to say, ‘Get him out of here?’

According to the Ohio Revised Code, officers are exempt from any concealed carry prohibitions. The federal Law Enforcement Officers’ Safety Act supports the same.

Paul Johnson, director of security at OhioHealth MedCentral Mansfield Hospital, said that facility have rules and signs prohibiting people from carrying in the hospital.

If a patient comes in and happens to be carrying their firearm, staff members will ask him or her to take the gun to a vehicle, if possible. If it’s an emergency situation, staff will store the firearm in a locked safe until the patient is recovered and outside of the hospital walls, he said.

But those rules don’t apply to law enforcement.

“Most law enforcement are required to carry whether on or off duty,” Johnson said. “They’re never really off.”

This is an interesting case.  They have a policy but don’t post, in which case their policy is irrelevant.  Yet they called the police on the police, and so the police drew weapons on the police like they were criminals.

How does it feel, sir, to have guns brandished in your direction for no good reason?  Unsafe?  Now, your argument that goes like this: “Officers carry to be prepared, and citizens do too,” Doan said. “If you have a concealed carry and get hurt, are they going to say, ‘Get him out of here?’ , is a little head scratching.  I want to believe that you care about concealed carriers, but it’s hard given what most of your colleagues think about us.

I’ll tell you what.  I want you to lobby for the repeal of laws that give LEOs special dispensation for carrying in court, parades, schools and everywhere else, and lobby for the codification of that right for everyone.  Then I’ll believe that your having invoked our good name in order to argue for your officer was in good faith.  Otherwise, you’re just a liar.  And maybe you said more than you wanted to.  Yes, concealed carriers do have to be “prepared,” which is why we care about this issue as much as you do for your officers.

Concealed Carrier Stops Attacker

BY Herschel Smith
6 days, 15 hours ago

Yakima Herald:

YAKIMA, Wash. — A 32-year-old man who was shopping with at least three children at a Yakima Wal-Mart was the victim of an unprovoked assault when a stranger picked up a metal tee-ball bat and struck him, according to Yakima police.

The victim was not injured, but he did have a concealed weapons permit, which he immediately put to use, police said.

A store security officer reported hearing a man in the sporting goods department yelling “Get on the ground!” and found one man pointing a pistol at another, who was lying on the floor.

Police arrived a short time later and arrested the 30-year-old suspect, who remains in Yakima County jail in lieu of $30,000 bail set Monday.

The incident took place about 11:20 a.m. Saturday at the east Yakima Wal-Mart.

The victim told police he did not know the suspect, nor had the two exchanged any words before he was hit by the bat, according to an affidavit filed by police.

A video from the store’s security system shows the victim shopping with at least three children. According to the affidavit, the video shows some of the children move out of view as a man is seen coming over, picking up a metal tee-ball bat from a rack and striking the other man in the shoulder with it.

The victim, who police said has had a concealed pistol license since March 2013, then pulled a .357 Sig Sauer pistol from a holster and pointed it at the suspect, the affidavit said.

Well, okay, as long as the perpetrator believes that the person holding the weapon will shoot him if he attempts to escape, this method can be successful.  But don’t ever do this and actually shoot the perpetrator trying to run from you.  You can only shoot if your life is in danger, contrary to what some people believe.

New York Detective Steals During Police Raid

BY Herschel Smith
6 days, 15 hours ago

The New York Times:

A New York police detective has been suspended after a surveillance video appeared to show him taking money from a Brooklyn deli during a sweep of the store for loose cigarettes.

The detective, Ian Cyrus, 49, who was assigned to the Brooklyn North narcotics unit, was suspended “based on the nature of the allegations in this incident, in addition to the video provided to us,” Stephen Davis, the top spokesman for the Police Department, said in a statement on Thursday.

Detective Cyrus’s supervisor in the narcotics unit, Sgt. Fritz Glemaud, 44, has been placed on modified duty, Mr. Davis added.

The police said the Internal Affairs Bureau and the Brooklyn district attorney’s office were conducting a joint investigation of the episode.

WABC-TV obtained surveillance footage taken of the counter area last Friday night at Yemen Deli & Grocery, in Bedford-Stuyvesant.

Gosh, I hate it when that happens to me.  I remember the last time I was caught stealing when I ran into a store with a gun pointing it at people.  The pictures they took weren’t very flattering.  One of them made me look fat.

Notes From HPS

BY Herschel Smith
6 days, 15 hours ago

David Codrea:

That titles of nobility were viewed by the Founders as incompatible with the Constitutional form of government they established is a given. So it should come as no surprise that Michael Bloomberg, one of the foremost advocates for infringing on the right to keep and bear arms, was pleased beyond measure to accept the honorary title of Knight Commander of the Most Excellent Order of the British Empire, as The New York Times reported Thursday. Also no surprise: He declared the heirs apparent to two wannbe political dynasties, Jeb Bush and Hillary Clinton, to be the only two candidates capable of ascending to the throne.

After all, they are two peas in a pod.  And let David remind you of the positions of Jeb and Hillary on the “pathway to citizenship.”

David gives us another piece of the puzzle.  You know, people who demand to know sources are idiots.  What do they think – that journalists and bloggers are going to give up people who entrusted themselves to give needful reports?  I always protected my sources.  I expect David and Mike to do the same thing.  I would lose respect for them if they didn’t.  It’s about more than just expediency.  It’s about honor.  People who demand to know sources don’t understand honor.

Mike Vanderboegh cites an excellent summary of the sporting purposes conundrum in which the ATF finds itself.

Man shoots at armadillo, hits mother-in-law.  Or so he says.

It appears as if South Carolina and Georgia are on the verge of recognizing each others’ carry permits.  Should have happened a long time ago.  And there shouldn’t be any such thing as carry permits to begin with.

Guns Tags:

The Sporting Purposes Tweak

BY Herschel Smith
1 week, 1 day ago

In order to understand the sporting purposes tweak, you need to read this article cited David Codrea.  This weapon shouldn’t be an NFA device to begin with regardless of barrel length because it doesn’t have a butt stock.  But David initially reported this.

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives’ classification of pistol grip only firearms with 14” barrels that fire shotgun shells and are over 26” in overall length as neither “shotguns” nor National Firearms Act “Destructive Devices” or “Any Other Weapons” has created a situation wherein the agency must either quietly save face or have it exposed that untold numbers of good faith gun owners currently legally possess firearms problematic for the government to allow. In order for that status quo to continue, ATF, in conjunction with certain members of Congress and lobbying interests, is working at “tweaking” its definition of the arbitrary “sporting use” term, insider sources tell Gun Rights Examiner. And with that will come a push to expand definitions to allow for further importation bans on certain types of presently legal ammunition

Mike Vanderboegh (who is at the NRA convention) follows up with this.

Sipsey Street Irregulars can now confirm the broad outlines of a story first disclosed two days ago by National Gun Rights Examiner columnist David Codrea. Last week, a secret deal involving the National Rifle Association lobbying arm and brokered by politicians of both national political parties was struck in Washington DC that would save the ATF from the political and legal consequences of its own regulatory errors. In the process, this deal would broaden the language of the 1968 Gun Control Act regarding “sporting purposes” and allow ATF to extract itself from the potentially catastrophic political damage of enforcing its arbitrary ruling that makes every owner of a pistol grip 12 Gauge shotgun like the Mossberg Cruiser a felon in possession of a “destructive device” subject to the penalties of the National Firearms Act of 1934 — currently up to 10 years in federal prison and a quarter million dollar fine.

[ … ]

“There are people currently rotting in federal prison on NFA violations and others walking around scot-free. At some point, unless the Congress gives them the cover by changing the law, they are going to have to explain that in open court.”

[ … ]

… other sources familiar with the internal fallout of these revelations say that David Codrea’s original story was “spot on,” adding “they can’t believe they were found out.” Other sources in the nation’s capitol indicate that the deal was intended to be kept secret until it could be attached as a innocuous rider at the last moment to a “must-pass” appropriations bill. Said one: “The plan was to pass it, claim victory on all sides, and pray that no one noticed the ‘sporting purposes tweak.'”

Well, it’s been noticed thanks to David’s hard work.  David follows up his first article with this update.  Basically, the NRA and politicians from both parties are planning to give the ATF cover for their misuse of power, abusive rulemaking, and contradictory guidance.

The sporting purposes test remains in my estimation the most unconstitutional abomination in firearms laws in history.  There is no basis whatsoever for such a thing, nor could there be such a basis as “sporting purposes” for disallowing ownership of certain kinds of firearms given that the second amendment has nothing whatsoever to do with sporting.

The most disturbing thing is that politicians from both sides of the isle are planning to give cover to the ATF, and those politicians will be given cover by the NRA.  Shame on the NRA, and the NRA board of directors is making it difficult if not impossible to trust them, even a single one of them.

God’s governance and economy requires that men face the consequences of their actions.  There is no free ride, and when a government bureau has acted in bad faith, they must accept the punishment.  As for the Congress, the only acceptable tweak … let me say this again for emphasis … the only acceptable tweak to the sporting purposes test is to undo it entirely and erase it from the face of the earth.  Anything else will be considered treason by gun owners across America.  And we will know who you are.  Watch your step, men.  Gun owners never forget.

South Carolina Communists On Gun Laws

BY Herschel Smith
1 week, 1 day ago


More than 200,000 South Carolinians have concealed weapons permits. Some Upstate gun instructors say there’s no way to know if all of those people meet all the requirements to carry a weapon in public.

Johnny Horton, former Army gunner and card-carrying member of the National Rifle Association, love his firearms and doesn’t go anywhere without his pistol.

He says South Carolina’s concealed weapons permit law terrifies him.

The law forces the state to issue a permit to anyone who passes a CWP course and shows either proof of 20/40 vision within 6 mont5hs or a valid driver’s license.

You need 20/40 vision to get a driver’s license, but gun instructors say just because you have one doesn’t mean you have good enough eyesight to safely handle a gun. That’s because the state only requires drivers to update them every 10 years.

“They are shooting in the dark,” Horton explains.

He says he knows there are people out there who aren’t qualified; those who have lost their sight within the last 3 years and have a CWP.

Warren Sanders, a CWP instructor, didn’t lose his eyesight, but ran into some serious problems with his vision a while back.

Sanders knew he had no business handling a gun at the time, but under state law, he could still carry a concealed weapon.

“I personally have had cataract surgery,” he says. “My vision deteriorated. I saw the need for corrective lenses and took care of it.”

Sanders says his concern is people like him who have vision problems, but don’t tell anyone and use a valid driver’s license to take advantage of what he calls a loophole in the law to get a concealed weapons permit.

“A person may make a decision based on faulty vision and it may cost someone else dearly,” he adds.

There’s no way to know how many people out there don’t meet the vision requirement, but are carrying guns. But Horton says there’s one thing we do know: they’re out in public with the rest of us.

“The last place you want to be is in the grocery store and catch a stray bullet while you’re buying a loaf of bread,” he says.

And so what do Messrs Horton and Sanders recommend?  Allowing gun “instructors” to perform eye examinations?  Or perhaps forcing gun permit holders to obtain yearly eye examinations and submit the results to the state for approval for continuation of their permit?

This is called corruption, and we in North Carolina have had our share too.  Mr. Jim Black was convicted when he pushed legislation through to force minors to obtain eye examinations from Optometrists prior to entering school (and Mr. Black is, not coincidentally, an Optometrist).  There is more to this than meets the eye.  I want to know what’s in it for Messrs Horton and Sanders.

And as for Mr. Sanders, who ran into serious problems with his eyesight a few years ago and “took care of it,” would he have forced people in similar positions to interact with the state to do what he did?  He knows that he isn’t going to be buying a load of bread and “catch a stray bullet” from a blind permit holder.  That is perhaps the stupidest thing I have every seen in print, and the “journalist” is a rube and tool for printing it.  He’s invoking the “boogeyman under the bed” tactic.  Boo! … boo! … be askeerd.  Wild gun battles in the streets and stores by blind men!

I think we can safely put Horton and Sanders in the same category as State Senator Larry Martin of Pickens, S.C., who opposed open carry legislation in S.C. because those horrible Negros might open carry around Charleston, affecting the tourism industry (“The word is the SC tourism industry lobby killed the open carry bill. It was feared that “minority youth” walking around Charleston with pistols strapped to their hips would scare off the tourists”).  They are all communists.  They deserve to be treated as such.

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