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Stolen Guns Part Of Violence Debate

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hayes1966
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Stolen Guns Part Of Violence Debate

Postby hayes1966 » Thu Jan 26, 2006 11:17 am

Stolen Guns Part Of Violence Debate
Officials meet in Hartford; legislation to improve record keeping discussed

By ETHAN ROUEN
Day Staff Writer, Police/Fire Reporter 1/19/2006
Hartford —In 2005, 72 people were shot to death in Connecticut, and hundreds more sustained injuries from guns, many of them illegally obtained.

As gun violence flourishes in the state's urban areas, local and state leaders struggle to stem the shootings. On Wednesday, politicians, police and activists gathered in Hartford to discuss possible solutions.

“Illegal guns don't grow on trees,” said Brian Malte of the Brady Campaign to Prevent Gun Violence. “They are systematically and methodically diverted to illegal markets.”

Guns used in crimes are usually stolen or obtained through a “straw purchase,” where a person legally buys a gun, then sells it illegally. Only three states — California, Oregon and Massachusetts — make it illegal for a person to buy more than one handgun a month, Malte said. Four states require that people report stolen guns.

For the third time, the Connecticut Legislature is considering a bill this year that would require gun owners to report stolen guns. This step, and other measures to improve record keeping, would lead to more responsible gun owners and fewer guns circulating on the black market, Malte said.

Hartford Mayor Eddie Perez echoed Malte's statement and also called on law enforcement to increase communication between agencies.

Current laws make it difficult for police to track stolen guns and thwart “intervention and prevention” measures like intelligence sharing, said Joe Vince, president of the national organization Crime Gun Solutions.

Gov. M. Jodi Rell, who met with state leaders late last year to discuss the increasing gun problems throughout the state, has scheduled a second meeting on the matter Feb. 14.

New London police voiced concern that they were not involved in the governor's first meeting, which came in the midst of a violent month that included two murders in the city.

Following a letter written to the governor by state Sen. Andrea Stillman, D-Waterford, and state Reps. Ernest Hewett, D-New London, and Edward Moukawsher, D-Groton, Rell invited the mayors of 15 cities to her second meeting, including Mayor Beth Sabilia of New London.

In a letter accepting Rell's invitation, Mayor Perez proposed discussing possible solutions like youth employment, improved inmate re-entry programs and funding for local police.

Sabilia said in a telephone interview Wednesday that New London, as a smaller city, was overlooked initially, but “proportionately, I think we're seeing more than our fair share of a spike in drug and violent activity.”

She said she supports Perez's suggestions, and that New London's first priority should be getting more police officers on the street.

Those suggestions have been made before, but, Sabilia said, “until we back [those ideas] up with substantive policy change, with commensurate funding, it's hollow, and we'll continue to see these sorts of activities.” http://www.theday.com/eng/web/news/re.a ... e558354bb2

I attended the event sponsored by CAGV this afternoon at the Lyceum Center in Hartford.

There was no public speaking forum, as it was a moderated event by Dr. Bradley, the President of CAGV who only had cards with questions collected from the audience of about 75 people.

I was only able to positively identify one other shooting sportsman at the event besides myself and believe there was one other. The rest of the audience
consisted of the usual CAGV cadre of elderly women and a fair number of local residents of Hartford

The panel consisted of:
* Brian Malte: Brady Campaign's state lobbyist
* Mayor Eddie Perez of Hartford
* Joe Vince (ATF ret)
* Chief James Berry, Manchester PD
* Ron Pinciaro, Co-executive director of CAGV, Lisa Labella of CAGV was also present

The legislative "responder panel" consisted of:
Sen. Andrea Stillman
Rep. Ken Green (not Len Greene)
Rep. James Spallone
Rep. Robert Farr
Rep. Mike Lawlor (HJud co-chair)
Sen. McDonald (Jud. co-chair)

The Hartford police chief was also in attendence in uniform stating openly that he is a supporter of the Brady Campaign and was accompanied by a number of higher ranking Hartford PD officers in uniform

The main message was to stop gun trafficing with secondary themes addressing: LONG GUN registration (Lawlor); Stolen Gun reporting mandates (all); SMART GUNS, serialized bullet tracking/tracing; one-gun-per-month (Malte of Brady Campaign); AMMUNITION RESTRICTIONS /LICENSING AND QUANTITY OF PURCHASE RESTRICTIONS - - Chief Berry of Manchester; AMMUNITION SIN TAX proposed by Senator McDonald

Chief Berry continued on his anti-gun tirade - in uniform AND wearing his handgun off duty and outside of Manchester stating that he is an NRA instructor but believes most people don't take gun ownership seriously enough and wants limits imposed on buying ammo. He continued with the argument that England and Japan have less gun crime than the US.

Joe Vince was among the more logical sounding panelists suggesting that enforcement and intelligence should be streamlined and improved to solve gun crimes and suggested that police should be more concerned about the "gang member with the .380 than a secondary long gun sale at a gun show"

Rep. Robert Farr did state during the panel discussion that one of the problems CT has is 30,000 outstanding warrants that need to be persued ; 6,000 of which are
for felonies and 2,000 of those belonging to Hartford, alone.

I submitted a series of well written questions relevant to the topics discussed and the only one Dr. Bradley used from my inex card was "Why do we need more gun laws - why not enforce existing laws" To that end, Mike Lawlor answered to the effect that they weren't really seeking new laws but wanted to "close the loopholes" on existing ones.

Ron Pinciaro displayed contradictory themes during his remarks opening with "we're not here to take guns away from citizens - we're not gun grabbers." His closing remark was: "The guns that are being sold today are not hunting or sporting guns, they're designed to kill - they're semi-automatic and 9mms, etc."

That was the end of the forum. Expect movement on TRAFFICING; LONG GUN REGISTRATION and STOLEN GUN REPORTING legislation soon and be prepared to monitor the other items.
******

The event was held at the Lyceum, a beautifully interior designed building a close distance from the Capitol. There were approx. 26 people in attendance. The forum did not start off with the Pledge of Allegiance, in fact there wasn't even an American flag present (go figure?).

Brian Malte - "Guns are being bought off the internet without any paperwork." Applauds New Jersey's foresight for passing Smart Gun technology before it even exists!

Mayor Perez - Said that he "wants to push for more gun laws" but didn't specify what. "Will work with CAGV to get it on the legislative schedule."

Joe Vince - Basically, he believes in guilt by association and does not believe in the presumption of innocence.

Chief James Berry - Claims to be an NRA member but is obviously not pro gun. Quotes dated Michael Moore statistics about U.S. gun violence v.s.
Germany, Japan, etc. "We need to have more scrutiny on FFL holders." "We
need to have more scrutiny on firearms storage." Believes in having limitations on ammunition. "I will assist the Hartford region in this matter."

Ron Pinciero - His claim to not be a gun grabber is a blatant lie. He believes in a "complete and comprehensive registration of all firearms sales." Claims that a two year old study shows that "CT residents, including gun owners, want stronger gun laws." His biggest proposals are:
a) Mandatory time window for reporting missing guns.
b) Same paperwork for long guns as with hand guns.
"Gun owners agree with this proposed legislation." "Guns are being designed
to kill."

Rep. Ken Green - Supports above legislation.

Rep. James Spallone - Represents a rural, pro gun community but feels that
above legislation sounds very reasonable. Is intrigued by Chief Berry's
suggestion of restricting ammo.

Rep. Robert Farr - "The reporting of a stolen firearm legislation will be
easier to get passed."

Rep. Michael Lawlor - Agrees with above, just has to "figure out a way to write it." Has proclaimed it his "goal #1 this year." "Trying to identify these loopholes and close them." He is the only one that specified the time window (3-4 days). He really likes the idea of the Terry pat down.

Hartford Chief Harnet - "I am a long time supporter of the Brady Campaign."

Sen. Andrew McDonald - Absolutely loved Patrick Moynihan's old idea of
severely taxing ammunition.

Questions from the audience were not permitted, instead you had to
submit questions written on a card. I saw a woman named Lisa go through the
cards before handing them to the moderator. She screened them and put the
ones she chose on the top, literally stacking the deck. There was only 10
minutes allotted for these questions so only her top 3 picks were read.

The forum was a huge disappointment, lots and lots of BS. Everybody said, "We want (this)", or, "We need (that)" but no one gave any real answers or solutions. But be forewarned, the anti's are definitely priming the pump for 2006.

I talked with one of their people, James Desantos. He thinks I'm just a fence sitter on the subject and will put me on the list for any future events. He spoke of your website by name, so I suspect that they're getting your emails.



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