CCRKBA CALLS UPON SARAH BRADY TO INTERVENE, CLEAR ILLINOIS MAN IN GUN BAN CASE

Friday, January 16th, 2004

BELLEVUE, WA—In an open letter to gun control advocate Sarah Brady, the Citizens Committee for the Right to Keep and Bear Arms is asking her to intervene in the case of a Wilmette, IL man who has been charged with violating local and state gun laws, simply because he defended his family with a handgun against a home invader.

In his letter to Brady, CCRKBA Chairman Alan Gottlieb reminded the longtime gun rights opponent that she and her organization, the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence, has long insisted that it does not oppose gun ownership, or self-defense. Wilmette resident and restaurateur Hale DeMar stands accused in this case, which has raised the ire of gun rights activists from coast to coast.

“Yet,” Gottlieb wrote, “through the years, your organization has yet to actually defend a single law-abiding citizen who has been victimized by an extremist firearms law, and instead your group has supported handgun licensing and registration schemes, waiting periods and other restrictive statutes that have placed many American citizens at risk.

“Mr. DeMar is a victim of the type of gun laws that your organization has supported as being ‘reasonable’,” Gottlieb continued. “What’s reasonable about a father and husband being prosecuted for defending his home and family against a man who, as it turns out, has a criminal record in another state?”

Gottlieb reminded Mrs. Brady that, “Even Wilmette Police Chief George Carpenter has admitted in a statement quoted by the Wilmette Life community newspaper that the handgun ban ordinance has seen limited use as a law enforcement tool.” He also told her that an on-line poll by the Chicago Tribune revealed that an overwhelming 83 percent of the respondents oppose the notion that municipalities can ban handgun ownership, while only 17 percent support that approach.

“I am calling on you to help vindicate Hale DeMar,” Gottlieb said, “by asking that prosecutors drop all charges against him, and further, you should request that the Wilmette village council rescind its ordinance, so that we never again see a problem like this.

“After all,” he concluded, “to paraphrase a line you have used many times, Sarah, ‘If it prevents the wrongful prosecution of just one innocent citizen,’ this ordinance should be repealed.”