November 2007

Thursday, November 1st, 2007

In California, Gov. Arnold Schwarzenegger signed into law a measure requiring that the make, model and serial number of a firearm be microstamped onto the internal working parts of all semiautomatic handguns in such a manner that those identifiers are imprinted onto the cartridge case upon firing. The manufacture, sale and transfer of such new or retooled handguns approved for sale in the Golden State after January 1, 2010 that do not imprint their identifying information on a cartridge case would be a crime. According to the Copley News Service, that excludes nearly 1,300 different semiautomatic handguns already approved for sale in California.

In Illinois, Cook County prosecutors dropped criminal charges against Rev. Jesse Jackson and Rev. Michael Pfleger stemming from their June arrests during a protest at a Riverdale, Illinois gun store. Police in Riverdale, in south suburban Chicago, arrested Jackson and Pfleger on June 23 outside Chuck’s Gun Shop, where the two men and other demonstrators had gathered to protest “gun violence.” Jackson and Pfleger were arrested for blocking the entrance and charged with criminal trespassing, a misdemeanor. In August, Jackson and Pfleger requested a jury trial, and one was set for the 26th of this month. However, “after reviewing the evidence, we decided we could not meet our burden of proof,” said a spokesman for the Cook County state’s attorney’s office, according to the Chicago Sun-Times.

Milwaukee County, Wisconsin Circuit Judge Daniel A. Noonan understands the Wisconsin Constitution far better than Gov. Jim Doyle and the Legislature’s Democrat majority, says CCRKBA Chairman Alan M. Gottlieb. Judge Noonan nullified charges recently against a Milwaukee pizza delivery man who had been accused of shooting two would-be robbers, ruling that a state law prohibiting concealed carry – at least as it applies to the case against Andres Vegas – is unconstitutional. Article 1, Section 25 of the Wisconsin State Constitution affirms that, “The people have the right to keep and bear arms for security, defense, hunting, recreation or any other lawful purpose.” Gottlieb said that, “anti-gun Gov. Jim Doyle and his cronies in the Legislature should take a lesson from the Vargas case and stop interfering with the civil rights of their constituents. Twice in the past five years, Doyle has blocked sensible concealed carry legislation.”

In Schenectady, New York, an Albany Street electronics store owner shot a man who was burglarizing his store early one morning about a month ago, police said. Police said Fun Electronics owner Donald Khemraj and his son, Bud, heard glass breaking from their residence upstairs at about 5:30 a.m. The men left the apartment with a shotgun, police said, and found John P. Sayers, 21, in the first-floor store. Donald Khemraj shot the suspect, police said, when he confronted him in front of the store. Sayers was hit in the chest, reported the Albany, New York Times Union. Police say officers responded and found Sayers sitting in front of the store. Sayers collapsed while being taken to the patrol vehicle and said he had been shot. Sayers was flown to Albany Medical Center. Sayers has been charged with third-degree burglary and third-degree criminal mischief. Police say the investigation is continuing.

Utah has stopped issuing concealed gun permits to foreigners because of the rising number of applicants and the difficulty of conducting criminal background checks, reports The New York Times. “Utah has become the state of choice for people who did not live in the United States but wanted to carry a gun in the country,” said Richard Wyss, a lawyer at the Utah Bureau of Criminal Investigation. About 1,000 citizens of other countries have permits that allow them to carry a concealed gun in Utah and 30 states that have an agreement with Utah. Since 1995, Utah has issued 92,000 permits, 30 percent to non-Utah residents.

“In the 1990s, the number of guns went up by 40 million but the murder rate fell dramatically,” notes nationally syndicated columnist Mark Steyn in The Washington Times. “If firearms availability were the determining factor (in crime), Vermont and Switzerland would have high murder rates…It’s the culture, not the technology.”