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20-year-old sues Dick’s Sporting Goods, Walmart over new gun policies

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A 20-year-old Oregon man has accused Walmart and Dick’s Sporting Goods of age-discrimination for refusing to sell him a rifle.

Tyler Watson filed Oregon county court lawsuits against the retailers on Monday, six days after they announced they would not sell guns to buyers under 21.The companies added the higher age restriction after the massacre at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Fla.

Oregon law allows state residents to buy shotguns or rifles as of age 18. Federal law also allows people 18 and older to buy rifles or shotguns from licensed dealers.

Watson’s lawsuits may be the first of their kind in the U.S., his attorney, Max Whittington, told The Oregonian/Oregon Live, media outlets that first reported the cases.

NRA files Suit over Florida gun control Bill Signed by Gov Rick Scott

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The National Rifle Association Filed a claim over firearm control enactment by Florida Gov. Rick Scott, saying it disregards the Second Amendment by raising the age to purchase firearms from 18 to 21.

The claim came hours after Gov. Scott, a Republican, signed the bill into law Friday evening.

Legal counselors for the NRA need a government judge to obstruct the new age confinement from taking effect.

The new enactment raises the base age to purchase rifles from 18 to 21, expands a three-day wait period for handgun buys to incorporate long weapons and bans bump stocks that enable firearms to emulate fully automatic fire. It likewise makes a supposed “watchman” program that empowers educators and other school representatives to carry handguns.

The new measures come in the wake of the Feb. 14 shooting frenzy at Marjory Stone man Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, that slaughtered 17 individuals.

Florida Law Makers Approve Bill Allowing Teachers To Carry Guns…

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Florida lawmakers shot down an amendment on Monday that would have banned semi-automatic “assault” weapons like the AR-15 used in the Parkland school massacre.

They did, however, agree to raise the legal age for purchasing a firearm to 21 — and approved legislation that would give teachers the right to carry guns in school, NBC-2 reports.

The amendments were introduced as part of a packaged set of bills being offered up following Nikolas Cruz’ alleged shooting spree at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.

Florida’s Senate Rules Committee spent more than two hours debating the gun-control issues before eventually casting their votes, according to NBC.

Senators also agreed to confiscate guns from people with mental health issues, in addition to raising the legal buying age and giving teachers the right to carry.

A similar packaged set of reforms is scheduled to be taken up by the House Rules Committee on Tuesday.

The meetings come as more and more people continue to show their support for stricter gun-control laws, many of whom own weapons themselves.

Hundreds of activists and students turned out in Tallahassee last week — including survivors of the Parkland massacre — to call on lawmakers to act.

Many gathered at the Capitol on Monday to show their support for the assault weapons amendment, which was rejected by a 7-6 vote.

“Shame, shame, shame!” some of the activists shouted, according to News 13.

The fact that teachers could soon be allowed to carry firearms inside schools wasn’t sitting well with gun-control supporters, either.

“It bothers me to think as a father of two young boys to tell them to not be aggressive to your teacher,” said Sen. Oscar Branynon (D-Miami Gardens).

The lawmaker told the Sun Sentinel that he and other black fathers across Florida will now have to include teachers when talking to their children about how to act around armed authority figures.

“Please don’t make it dangerous for children who look like my children to go to school,” he said.

The Senate’s proposed legislation is slated to go through its second and final committee on Tuesday before being voted on later in the week.

If passed, the bills will have to be signed into law by Gov. Rick Scott.

DOJ awards 9 million 4 community policing active shooter training

House | News | Politic | Training

 

 

The Department of Justice on Monday announced $9 million in funding for community policing efforts and active shooter training.

Attorney General Jeff Sessions announced the funding at the the International Association of Chiefs of Police conference in Philadelphia, according to a news release.

More than a third of the money, about $3.6 million, will go towards the Community Policing Development Program. The money will fund training and technical assistance and will help develop new community policing strategies.

The funds will go to local police departments, schools and other community groups and non-profits focused on training. Organizations in ten states and the District of Columbia are getting the money.

“Community policing builds trust and mutual respect between communities and law enforcement, and that helps us reduce crime,” Sessions said. “Over the last 23 years, the Department of Justice has invested more than $14 billion in community policing—and I have no doubt that it has saved lives across America.”

Additionally, the Community Oriented Policing arm of the DOJ is awarding $5,392,529 to the Advanced Law Enforcement Rapid Response Training Center at Texas State University. The grant has been awarded through the Preparing for Active Shooter Situations Training Program.

The training is “designed to increase public safety by providing funds for scenario-based training that prepares officers and other first responders to safely and effectively handle active-shooter and other violent threats,” according to a fact sheet on the COPS website.

The training developed with those funds will be used to train law enforcement and first responders nationally. Training via e-learning modules could be one way the skills are taught.

“Under President Trump’s strong leadership, this Department of Justice will continue to provide law enforcement officers with the resources and tools they need to make this country safe,” said Sessions.

Judge denies motion to wipe clean Arpaio’s criminal conviction

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U.S. District Judge Susan Bolton said she dismissed Arpaio’s criminal contempt case after President Donald Trump decided to issue a pardon. But in an order denying Arpaio’s motion to vacate all records of the conviction, Bolton said not even the president can erase facts.

The no-nonsense sheriff was found guilty in late July. Bolton ruled then that Arpaio had exhibited a “flagrant disregard” of a court order that barred him from rounding up undocumented immigrants. In her ruling, Bolton cited as evidence several comments Arpaio had made to the media.

“Why are they going after this Sheriff? Well we know why. Because they don’t like me enforcing illegal immigration law,” Arpaio was quoted as saying in an April 2012 interview with CBS.

“I’m still going to do what I’m doing,” he told PBS Newshour that same month. “I’m still going to arrest illegal aliens coming into this country.”

After hinting at it during a campaign style rally in August, Trump eventually pardoned the former sheriff. That spared the 85-year-old from up to six months behind bars. But that’s not enough for Arpaio. His lawyers say the pardon entitles him to the erasure of any record of the conviction.

“The President’s pardon moots the case, and it warrants an automatic vacatur of all opinions, judgments, and verdicts related to the criminal charge,” Arpaio’s lawyers wrote in a motion in late August.

Quite the contrary, says Bolton. “The power to pardon is an executive prerogative of mercy, not of judicial record-keeping,” she wrote in her order, citing a previous court case.

Jack Wilenchik, one of Arpaio’s attorneys, told Capitol Media Services that the record of the conviction could be used against the former sheriff in future cases. “We’re not asking to undo facts,” he said.

“We’re not asking for expungement,” he continued. “There’s no such thing in federal law.”

Wilenchik said the pardon functions as if someone had died prior to sentencing or before having a chance to appeal. “The whole case gets undone,” he said.

Bolton disagrees. “Indeed, a pardon ‘carries an imputation of guilt; acceptance a confession of it,’” she wrote, citing earlier court precedent.

“The Court found Defendant guilty of criminal contempt,” Bolton wrote. “The President issued the pardon. Defendant accepted. The pardon undoubtedly spared Defendant from any punishment that might otherwise have been imposed. It did not, however, ‘revise the historical facts’ of this case.”

Arpaio’s lawyers have already filed paperwork to appeal the decision.

“It’s not going to be dropped,” Arpaio said.

Gun stocks surge amid administration plans to ease export rules

News | Politic

 

Stocks for major gun makers surged Tuesday after a report surfaced claiming the Trump administration will ease export restrictions on small arms effective next year.

Four senior U.S. officials told Reuters the rule change would shift oversight of commercial arms sales from the State Department to the Commerce Department — giving American manufacturers more leeway to sell guns internationally, creating more jobs stateside and adhering to the president’s “Buy American” policy platform.

“Commerce wants more exports to help reduce the trade deficit. Amd State wants to stop things because it sees (arms) proliferation as inherently bad,” one of the officials, who spoke on a condition of anonymity, told Reuters. “We want to make a decision that prioritizes what’s more important. This will allow us to get in the (small arms sales) game for the first time ever.”

Sturm, Ruger and Co. and American Outdoor Brands — Smith & Wesson’s holding company — closed with double digit increases Tuesday. Vista Outdoor stock likewise gained more than 3 percent. The sudden boost follows a “difficult” summer for gun makers and retailers still standing in the shadow of last year’s record-breaking sales. Since the November election, stocks for Smith & Wesson and Ruger fell 50 percent and 26 percent, respectively. Both companies blame weak demand, with Smith & Wesson’s CEO predicting as much as a 17 percent decline in annual profits through 2018. Ruger’s second quarter net sales dropped 22 percent and its quarterly earnings fell by almost half compared to 2016.

The prospect of eased restrictions, however, could cure the industry’s malaise. Lawrence Keane, senior vice president for the National Shooting Sports Foundation, told Reuters the rule change would boost annual sales by as much as 20 percent.

The details of the new regulations could become public this fall before full implementation in 2018, according to the report.

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