Complete list of Briefings
Elderly Veteran Kills Home Intruder Who Attacked His Wife By Jason Hall, Feb 18, 2021
A Vietnam War veteran acted quickly after his wife was attacked by a home intruder carrying a large knife recently.
Herbert Parrish, 82, and his wife, Lois, 79, were inside their South Carolina home when they heard a knock on their back door Monday (February 15), FOX 57 reports.
Lois opened the door to find a man claiming to be looking for his chihuahua and asked if she had seen it. Lois told him "no" and the situation became violent, with the man pushing his way inside as she attempted to close the door.
A police report states the man pulled out a large knife and began attacking Lois before Herbert decided to fight back.
“I felt, we’re gone. He’s going to kill us and take what he can take,” Herbert told FOX 57. “He was not going to go out that door and leave us alive. That’s the way I felt. That’s why I said, 'I’ve got to do something quick and get the edge on him. Get the advantage on him,'”
Herbert grabbed his shotgun hanging on the wall of the door and hit the intruder with the handle of the gun "at least 10 times right in the face" until he was unconscious.
The intruder was identified as Harold Runnels, 61, and later pronounced dead at the Augusta University Medical Center late Monday night from injuries sustained during the incident.
Lois told FOX 57 that Runnels lived in a nearby mobile home and she had seen him walking around the area in the past.
FOX 57 reports both Herbert and Lois Parrish experienced injuries during the attack, but are both expected to make a full recovery.
TV Shows Push Gun Control Myths -- in Sync with Biden by John R. Lott Jr., February 18, 2021
Last week, the Biden administration promised gun control groups that it will soon roll out a massive push for limits on firearm purchases and other measures. President Biden reiterated that promise on Sunday. And the television networks aren’t waiting to lay the groundwork for this effort.
CBS is in a full-court press for gun control on its evening entertainment television shows. The bad guys are always white supremacists who use machine guns — supposedly AR-15s — to commit mass public shootings. Criminals in Mexico supposedly get machine guns from the United States. A father’s desire to protect his family only leads to tragedy when his daughter gets into the gun safe and uses the weapon in a mass public shooting. And guns in the home pose a danger for children. Gun registration is necessary for solving crime.
NBC isn’t to be left out, showing a woman who tried but failed to use a gun to protect herself. Instead, her gun was taken from her and used to kill a police officer. The lesson is that owning a gun will only bring you grief.
And that’s just in the first six weeks of the year. Every show gives an inaccurate impression about firearms, thereby helping in this push for gun restrictions. It’s as though these shows were written by Michael Bloomberg’s gun control organizations. Indeed, the networks are working with these groups. A member of Moms Demand Action recently wrote a Washington Post op-ed headlined: “Guns are white supremacy’s deadliest weapon. We must disarm hate.” So it isn’t too surprising that show after show portrays neo-Nazis using machine guns to commit mass public shootings. CBS’s “SWAT,” “FBI: Most Wanted,” “FBI,” and” Bull” all push this theme. They often refer explicitly to these guns as AR-15s. Others, such as “Magnum PI” and “NCIS LA,” constantly show criminals using machine guns.
In real life, machine guns aren’t used in mass public shootings -- and in only two murders since the 1930s. AR-15s are not machine guns. They are semi-automatic rifles that fire the same bullets with the same power and rapidity as any small-caliber, semi-automatic hunting rifle.
Also, it’s rare for white supremacists to commit mass public shootings – and in 72% of these murderers the shooters have no obvious political views. By far the next largest group is Islamic extremists, at 10%. People identified as “right-wingers” only make up 3%, and another 3% are conservative or Republicans. The same numbers are liberal, Democrat, left-wing, or black militant. While 58% of mass public shooters are white (excluding Middle Easterners), that is less than their share of the population (64.4%).
“Magnum PI” has an episode where a 12-year-old steals his father’s gun from a bedside table and accidentally shoots his 10-year-old brother. The message is that parents should be afraid of having guns in the home. But, in 2019, there were 37 accidental gun deaths among children under 11 years of age in the entire country. Most of those deaths involve shots fired by adult males, typically in their mid- to late-20s, who also have criminal records and are very likely to be drug addicts or alcoholics. With 43.8 million children under 11, the probability of a young child getting ahold of a gun and accidentally shooting another child is incredibly small.
CBS’s “Coyote,” starring Michael Chiklis, contains multiple misleading claims in virtually every episode. Chiklis’s character claims that the United States is the source of Mexico’s machine guns, but only 17.6% of all criminal firearms collected by Mexican authorities can be traced back to America. Hollywood screenwriters may not realize it, but you can’t just walk into gun stores in the U.S. and buy machine guns.
CBS’s “FBI” portrays a Mexican family living in the United States. The wife and daughter are murdered in a mass public shooting committed by a white supremacist. The grieving husband/father relates a conversation with his wife about her concerns that the U.S., which is flooded with guns, is more violent than Mexico. In fact, Mexico’s murder rate is six times higher than in that of the United States. Incidentally, while about half of American households own guns, well under 1% of Mexican adults legally own a gun.
The lessons from these entertainment shows are clear. Don’t try to use a gun for protection, and it’s better to not even think of owning one. Also, the biggest danger in present-day America is white racists with machine guns. Gun control advocates know Americans won’t accept more gun control if given accurate information. It is bad enough that news programs provide only one side of this debate. But when Americans just want to be entertained, they still can’t escape lies about gun ownership.
Lott is the president of the Crime Prevention Research Center and the author most recently of “Gun Control Myths.” Until last month, Lott was the senior adviser for research and statistics at the U.S. Department of Justice’s Office of Legal Policy.
HR 127: Bill Calls for Serious Fines, Prison Time for Unregistered Firearms
RELATED STORY: WITH FINES UP TO $150,000 AND PRISON SENTENCES OF 25 YEARS, REP. SHEILA JACKSON LEE'S NEW BILL — HR 127 — IS A MESS OF GUN CONTROL.
While Congress considers another stimulus bill to help out Americans suffering during the ongoing COVID-19 pandemic, one federal lawmaker has far different plans for America’s law-abiding gun owners. Her name is Sheila Jackson Lee. Her bill, HR 127, brings incredible fines and prison sentences for gun owners.
Biden Calls Guns a ‘National Health Crisis’ — Here’s Why He’s Wrong
Yes, U.S. Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee is the author of HR 127, the much-lamented anti-gun measure recently introduced in the U.S. House of Representatives. She wants gun owners licensed and all their guns registered. On top of that, she wants gun owners to purchase a special insurance policy from the U.S. Attorney General for $800 a year. But perhaps the most egregious item about her fundamentally unconstitutional measure is the penalties from breaking the new laws.
Make no mistake here: There would be absolutely no hand-slapping under the new law. Gun owners wouldn’t get a break for not complying with the licensing and registration mandates. While Lee and other Democrats in Congress refuse to strengthen laws that would increase penalties for violent criminals, she’s plenty happy to send gun owners to jail for up to a quarter of a century—after draining their bank accounts—for small violations of her sweeping legislation.
The measure states an unlicensed person possessing a non-registered firearm faces fines ranging from $75,000 to $150,000. Further, violators would face imprisonment of up to 15-25 years. The law even addresses anyone illegally transferring a weapon, like loaning a gun to a buddy for a hunting trip; that infraction brings fines of $50,000 to $75,000 and a prison stretch of 10 to 15 years.
And that’s not all. Gun owners violating the provision of the measure banning ammunition .50-caliber and larger face massive penalties. Fines range from $50,000 to $100,000, while imprisonment ranges 10 to 20 years. Magazines holding more than 10 rounds would bring fines ranging from $10,000 to $25,000. They would also include prison sentences ranging one to five years.
Penalties aside, if you haven’t heard the details about HR 127 yet, they are quite alarming.
The measure does, indeed, require registration of every firearm owned in America (except those owned by criminals, of course). The applicable part of the legislation states: “The Attorney General, through the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, shall establish a system for licensing the possession of firearms or ammunition in the United States, and for the registration with the Bureau of each firearm present in the United States.”
That provision continues: “Under the firearm registration system, the owner of a firearm shall transmit to the Bureau — (A) the make, model, and serial number of the firearm, the identity of the owner of the firearm, the date the firearm was acquired by the owner, and where the firearm is or will be stored; and (B) a notice specifying the identity of any person to whom, and any period of time during which, the firearm will be loaned to the person.”
The section on licensing also proves quite alarming. It states the Attorney General shall issue licenses only in the following circumstances:
Other interesting provisions dictate more stringent licensing requirements for “military-style weapons,” a mandatory $800 gun insurance policy sold by the government, a psychological evaluation to receive a license, a 24-hour training course administered by the Attorney General to qualify for a license and a ban on all private transfers without approval by the Attorney General.
In the end, HR 127 is a horrible piece of legislation for America’s law-abiding gun owners. And, the penalties for violating the proposed law are way over the top. They appear to be Jackson Lee’s attempt at seeing if those Americans who are saying, “Come and take it,” are ready to play hardball or are just blowing smoke.
Biden Pushes Gun Control On Parkland Shooting Anniversary MICHAEL GINSBERG February 14, 2021
President Joe Biden demanded Congress pass new gun control measures on the three-year anniversary of the Parkland school shooting.
“This Administration will not wait for the next mass shooting” to pass new legislation, he announced in a statement. Biden called for universal background checks, an assault weapons ban, and legal liability for gun manufacturers, all positions he pushed during his campaign. (RELATED: ‘It’s A Disaster’: Joe Biden’s Gun Plan Could Bankrupt The Firearms Industry, Advocates Say)
Biden invoked the memory of the 17 students who were killed on Feb. 14, 2018 at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School.
“For three years now, the Parkland families have spent birthdays and holidays without their loved ones … All across our nation, parents, spouses, children, siblings, and friends have known the pain of losing a loved one to gun violence,” the statement read.
The pro-gun control group Everytown for Gun Safety hailed Biden’s statement, calling it “a fitting tribute to every gun violence survivor.”
Party Registration Deadline Extended, Nick Reisman, February 15, 2021
Note: Make sure you are registered to vote with the party who you actually want to support. In New York State you can only vote in Primary elections of the party with whom you are registered. ( See the information at the following link: https://ballotpedia.org/Primary_elections_in_New_York )
New York voters will have more time to change their party registration, Gov. Andrew Cuomo on Sunday announced.
Cuomo signed an executive order extending the deadline to Tuesday, Feb. 16. The move is meant to create a uniform statewide policy after the party registration deadline fell on a Sunday this year.
The move is meant to give local elections officials more time to process party registration changes and as many of those local boards of election are short on staff due to the COVID-19 pandemic.
"The right to vote is one of the sacred pillars of our democracy, and as we continue to fight the war on COVID, we can't put democracy on hold," Cuomo said. "Today, we are extending the period for voters to change their party enrollment until Tuesday, February 16 to help break down more barriers to the ballot box and help ensure everyone has a chance to exercise this fundamental right."
The change takes effect immediately.
SUPREME COURT AGREES TO DECIDE WARRANTLESS ENTRY CASE February 12, 2021 | by Hannah Hill
Can the police enter your home without a warrant to take your guns?
That’s the question the U.S. Supreme Court has agreed to decide in Caniglia v. Strom.
The court decision to review a landmark Fourth Amendment case involving illegal gun seizure is a remarkable about-face from the previous summer, when the justices dismissed ten key gun rights cases.
Caniglia v. Strom arose from a non-violent disagreement between a husband and wife (the Caniglias). Mrs. Caniglia told the police her husband might be suicidal, and the officers promised Mr. Caniglia that they would not take his two handguns if he agreed to go to the hospital for an evaluation.
Mr. Caniglia agreed to go, and was evaluated and discharged the same day.
After he left for the hospital, the police entered their home – despite the lack of a warrant – and seized two handguns.
This is a clear violation of the Fourth Amendment protection against unreasonable searches and seizures.
As the guns were seized without a legal process, there was no real process for recovering them.
Both Mr. Caniglia and Mrs. Caniglia attempted to get the guns back over the next month, and the police simply refused to return them until the couple filed this lawsuit.
The officers claim they acted under the “community caretaking” exception to the due process requirements for searches. This exception to the warrant requirement was created by the Supreme Court in Cady v. Dombrowski:
“[P]olice officers…frequently investigate vehicle accidents in which there is no claim of criminal liability and engage in what, for want of a better term, may be described as community caretaking functions, totally divorced from the detection, investigation, or acquisition of evidence relating to the violation of a criminal statute.”
As long as it’s not “unreasonable,” the argument went, entering a vehicle for “community caretaking” purposes without a warrant was not a violation of the Fourth Amendment.
However, this only applied to vehicles, and the lower courts are divided on whether or not the exception should be applied to homes as well.
Now, the Supreme Court will weigh in on the question. Oral arguments have been scheduled for March 24, 2021.
Our legal team is watching this case closely, as well as other gun-related cases currently pending before the Supreme Court, and will provide updates.
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By Evan Gerstmann, Associated Press
The Supreme Court has just scheduled arguments for an important case on warrantless searches ...
The 4th Amendment right against warrantless searches of a person’s home is a pillar of Americans’ constitutional liberties. Before a police officer, or any other government official, can enter your home, they must show a judge that they have probable cause that they will discover specific evidence of a crime.
There are some limited exceptions to this right. There is an “exigent circumstances” exception. If a police officer looks through a home’s window and sees a person about to stab another person, the officer can burst through the door to prevent the attack. There is also the “emergency aid” exception. If the officer looked through the same window and saw the resident collapsing from an apparent heart attack, the officer could run into the house to administer aid. Neither of these cases violates the 4th Amendment and few would argue that it should be otherwise.
However, there is a broader cousin to these amendments called the “community caretaking” exception. It originally derives from a case in which the police took a gun out of the trunk of an impounded vehicle without first obtaining a warrant. The Supreme Court held that there is a community caretaking exception to the 4th Amendment’s warrant requirement because police perform “community caretaking functions, totally divorced from the detection, investigation, or acquisition of evidence relating to the violation of a criminal statute." The Court held that police activity in furtherance of these functions does not violate the 4th Amendment as long as it is executed in a “reasonable” manner.
Note that, unlike the first two exceptions, this exception is not limited to immediate emergencies. In the Supreme Court case just described there was only a general concern that vandals might eventually break into the impounded car and steal any weapons that were in the trunk. So the community care exception is far broader than the other two.
Also, all three exceptions allow warrantless searches so long as the police officer acted “reasonably”. That is one of the easiest constitutional standards to meet and is a significantly lower standard than “probable cause”, which is required for a warrant. As long as an officer might reasonably think that a warrantless search will alleviate a danger to the community, the search is considered constitutional.
There is a vigorous debate about whether the community care exception can apply to searches of a person’s home as well as of their car. Vehicles have always had less 4th Amendment protection than homes, which are considered a person’s most private sphere. Federal courts have been divided on this question and the Supreme Court has not ruled on it until now.
The Court has just announced that it will hear arguments next month on a case that presents this issue: Caniglia v. Strom. In this case, Mr. Caniglia was arguing with his wife and melodramatically put an unloaded gun on the table and said “shoot me now and get it over with.” His wife called a non-emergency number for the police who arrived shortly thereafter. The police disagreed about whether Mr. Caniglia was acting “normal” or “agitated” but they convinced him to take an ambulance to the local hospital for evaluation. The police did not accompany him.
While he was on his way to the hospital, Mrs. Caniglia told the police that her husband kept two handguns in the home. The police decided to search his home for the guns without obtaining a warrant. (Mrs. Caniglia’s consent to have the police search their home was legally negated because the police untruthfully told her that her husband had consented to the seizure of any guns.) The police located and seized the two guns. Mr. Caniglia sued for the violation of his 4th Amendment right to privacy and his 2nd Amendment right to keep handguns in the home for self-protection.
The 1st Circuit Court of Appeals (which is the federal court just below the Supreme Court in Caniglia’s jurisdiction) sided with the police. The court wrote: “At its core, the community caretaking doctrine is designed to give police elbow room to take appropriate action when unforeseen circumstances present some transient hazard that requires immediate attention. Understanding the core purpose of the doctrine leads inexorably to the conclusion that it should not be limited to the motor vehicle context. Threats to individual and community safety are not confined to the highways.”
It is certainly true that the police need a good deal of discretion in carrying out their varied, complex, and sometimes dangerous duties. But they are also powerful agents of the government and their power is supposed to be restrained by the Bill of Rights. The 4th Amendment is supposed to protect the home above all other places. And whatever one’s views on gun control may be, the Supreme Court has clearly held that the right to keep handguns in the home is at the core of the 2nd Amendment.
Unlike the “exigent circumstances” and “emergency aid” exceptions, the community caretaking exception is not limited to circumstances where there is no time to apply for a warrant. And the question of what sort of caretaking falls under this exception is extremely vague. Will the police be able to use it to, for example, conduct warrantless searches of political protesters’ homes to make sure they aren’t planning on violent behavior at their next political rally? The Supreme Court is going to take a very close look at this case and there is a good chance that they will overrule the lower court’s decision.
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