Thursday, April 11, 2013

More Laws Are The Answer!

Yankeefried sent this story in as a stark reminder why we on the pro-freedom side are so dead-set against any new gun laws.

Sources: Sheriff slaying suspect's mental health history was not in database
(CNN) -- Ten months after being released from a mental institution, the suspect in the slaying of a West Virginia sheriff was able to purchase a gun that authorities say was used in the crime because his mental health information was not entered into a federal database, two sources with knowledge of the investigation told CNN.
Tennis Maynard, 37, has been charged with first-degree murder in the killing of Sheriff Walter E. "Eugene" Crum and with attempted murder after he allegedly pointed a gun at a sheriff's deputy who chased him.
He was involuntarily committed to a mental institution. That's an automatic disqualifier for firearms ownership - it's a question right on the 4473 form you fill out every single time you purchase a firearm. That information should have been sent to the Federal NICS when he was committed in February of 2010, but as of December 2010, nearly a year later, it hadn't. This allowed Maynard to purchase a handgun from a licensed dealer who performed a background check.

Let me repeat that. Licensed FFL holder. Federal background check. This wasn't some nebulous "gun show loophole". This was a dude who walked into a gun store, filled out the forms, and walked out with a firearm. He lied on the form, which in and of itself is a crime, but the background check that should have returned him as ineligible failed.

And yet they want to add more hoops and hurdles for peaceful gun owners?

We have a system in place that is supposed to stop people like Maynard from getting guns. We've been saying this for years - the NICS system that the Bradys and Bill Clinton swore would keep us safe should have been sufficient to stop this transaction from occurring. While a lot of noise is made about the "gun show loophole" - which is a load of crap, mind you, it's about private sales where you can and will be found liable if you sell a gun to an ineligible person - here we have someone who went to a licensed dealer and had a successful purchase despite being a prohibited person.

Please tell me why I should have to pay an FFL a transfer fee rather than conduct a private sale if the licensed dealers using the national system can't stop the mentally ill from getting firearms. All of the mass shootings in recent memory - probably of all time - are people with proven mental health problems. People like Maynard are exactly the kinds of people we want to keep guns away from - the bar for involuntary commitment is pretty darn high for a reason, and for him a mental hygiene commissioner even found him mentally impaired. This is precisely the kind of person the system is designed to stop from getting a firearm.

And yet the system still failed. In 2010, with modern computing power and the instant-access of the internet, this information should have been sent within seconds. Yet it took more than 10 months. Why? There is a serious flaw here, and before we start thinking about what new laws to add, we need to take a long, hard look at the many problems in the existing system and fix them first before we add more laws. Let's fix the broken system we have and see if it works before we come up with something ELSE that we'll neglect.

Unless, of course, the true intent isn't to actually stop the ineligible but to place ever higher burdens on the lawful...

That is all.

8 comments:

Dave H said...

They're screwing up coming and going:

http://www.wivb.com/dpp/news/erie/police-wrongly-pulled-mans-gun-permit

The tl;dr version: NY State Police recommended that a man near Buffalo have his pistol permit revoked and his guns confiscated because he had been prescribed anti-anxiety medication in the past. Turns out it was the wrong guy. NYSP realized the mistake and notified the county, but the guy still has to go back to the judge to get his permit reinstated before he can get his guns back.

Brad_in_MA said...

Jay,

Let's bring this closer to home. Here in MA there is state law which forbids reporting to the NICS involuntary hospitalizations for mental health issues. FORBIDDEN BY STATE LAW. Let that sink in. The reason for the law? To protect the privacy rights of those ordered into institutions.

Wolfman said...

I actually sent an idea to my Congresscritter this morning- a blind database (sealed records except by court order) that would maintain privacy of medical records but allow reporting. Time will tell if she looks at it or not, but I'm going to send it to my Senators as well. If this could be put in place as I envision (doubtful, I know) it could be a tool to fix NICS reporting that 1) actually helps screen people with violent tendencies and 2) keeps us safe, legal, responsible gun owners from being on the hook when the current stupid system fails. I floated it a while ago, but I really need to write the whole thing up. Life rarely affords me the time to write that much at once, but maybe soon (I have a 5mo, yeah THAT'S likely).

Bubblehead Les. said...

Speaking of Failing to do their Job, check your Inbox on the ATF's Failure to Shut Down the Gun Store that sold the Newtown Massacre Weapons.

This has been a BLNN News Break. We now return you to your regularly scheduled Blog, already in progress.

Anonymous said...

"Please tell me why I should have to pay an FFL a transfer fee rather than conduct a private sale if the licensed dealers using the national system can't stop the mentally ill from getting firearms."

Wrong question. The right question is, "Why do I have to ask ANYONE for permission to sell or gift my personal property, or to buy it in the first place?"

Perhaps breathing the same air as all of those libtards up there has caused some kind of toxic neurological chemicals to affect your mind? :>)

Anonymous said...

Unless or until HIPPA and like right to privacy laws are repealed or drastically changed, the NICS checks will not prevent crazy people from gettin guns.
In the case of Viginia Tech, Tucson, and Aurora, all of these were known to have serious mental problems.
Likewise, until Jamal, 18year old, unlicensed pharmacist is required to complete a 4473 to sell his piece of cr@p Jennings to new Crip member, 16 year old Leroy, background checks will do little to prevent gun violence.

Anonymous said...

Surprisingly it is not only against the law in MA, but it is Federal Law as well. Let. that. sink. in. Mental Health reporting is protected under various federal laws (ADA is just one) and congress persons should know this. Alas they have the worst short term memories unless it involves dirty politics, free lunches (lobbyists) golfing and other perks.

If I gift something like a mobile home (currently dealing with this from the deceased father-in-law) to a grand-kid for whatever reason, I have to have a will that so states this (Idaho law) or it may go automatically to probate.

Once you consult an attorney, pay their fees, the court filing fees and etc, etc, etc. You just surpassed the value of the property. But hey we (the local government, who knows all) don't want to be cheated out of taxes of any kind from the little people.

Is every private person going to have internet access and be able to call a toll free number like a dealer? What fees and taxes will these sales incur if you involve a licensed dealer and will the fee schedule you design compensate adequately?

Ain't gonna happen. Oh and one more thing...Stop using the plea bargain as a means to prosecute. Either you have evidence, or you do not. Don't drop firearms charges for a 3-5 year plea deal.

TOTWTYTR said...

If I were cynical, I'd say that the Clintons and Democratically controlled at the time US Congress purposely underfunded NICS knowing that this sort of thing would happen and that they'd be able to push for more "common sense" gun laws.

Good thing I'm not a cynic, isn't it?