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Old August 8, 2014, 04:32 PM   #26
Armed_Chicagoan
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The minimum sentence is insane. We have a recent case here of a gangbanger shot dead while he was on probation. One of the crimes he was on probation for was shooting a cop 2 years ago, and while he was on probation for that he was caught with a gun again. Apparently that wasn't enough to send him to jail, and he was on the street a few weeks ago and got shot dead by (presumably) another gangbanger.

It's cases like that that lead to mandatory minimum laws, and then people like Shaneen Allen run afoul of those and face a penalty far out of proportion to the crime. None of this would happen if judges would just lock up the truly dangerous people and show leniency only to those who clearly deserve it like Shaneen.
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Old August 8, 2014, 04:56 PM   #27
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Citizens screaming "we need mandatory minimum laws for gangsters carrying guns".

Legislators writing catchall laws to appease their constituents who demanded mandatory minimum sentencing laws for gun possession never imagined that real ordinary people also own guns and may be caught up in the fray!

Now what?

Gang bangers still have guns and mothers go to prison!
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Old August 8, 2014, 05:03 PM   #28
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Another example where a tough law intended to punish true criminals nets a harmless citizen with no way to give a judge discretion to allow leniency. Not that it's very likely a NJ Judge would given the state's extreme dislike for firearms.
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Old August 8, 2014, 05:04 PM   #29
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New Jersey Republican Assemblyman Dancer has just filed “Shaneen’s Law” which gives Judges full discretion to avoid mandatory jail time and/or give PTI to folks like Shaneen Allen.
That's a nice gesture on his part, but the problem still lies in discretion. If the law passed, I'd still be at the mercy of an individual judge's whim.
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Old August 8, 2014, 05:19 PM   #30
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The thing about this, though, is the DA (or whatever the state of NJ calls it's lawyer) DOES have discretion. IT (gender neutral) can dismiss the charges, yet has decided not to, for some reason? Maybe to pad ITS gun conviction stats for the next election cycle? I don't know, but I can suspect!
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Old August 8, 2014, 05:29 PM   #31
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So now how many lives will be ruined by the good intentions of those who know best, and how many subsequent lives will those damaged souls injure?

The one positive aspect of this is that it is not, and will not be ignored by the press. The Scopes Monkey Trial would not have been nearly so significant had the plaintiff settled, or rather, disputed the unprovable charges made against him (the teacher self-incriminated, but insisted upon a trial). So now the State of New Jersey has a few options;

-Finagle some way to plea-down out of court, though it seems they boxed themselves in on this one and will be forced to eat their zero tolerance (intolerance) due to an idiot DA/prosecutor who I'll just assume is gunning for an elected position this year.
-Gov. Christie could pardon/commute the accused on his own whim; there is hardly 'no chance for rational discretion' to prevail here, and I find it hard to believe such action would be used against him either at home or in a national election (which begs the question; why has he not done so already? This is the exact kind of runaway miscarriage of justice the Governor was given power of pardon for )
-Roll the bones, and hope for jury-nullification; bad, but very short lived negative optics for the prosecution/court system, so likely no long term change
-Roll the bones, and get a conviction; bad, lasting, nationwide publicity of the state's tyranny, with likely calls for state and national action to prevent a repeat. Highly likely the mother will become an activist in the process for her own sake. Part II to this last point is to hope for or against a successful appeal, to staunch the bleeding or aggravate the vindictive behavior, respectively. Expect the very law itself to be questioned in such a case.

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Old August 8, 2014, 06:08 PM   #32
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I agree that she should have known that her PA license wasn't valid in NJ ... but she didn't. She broke the law without knowing it. Of course, that calls into question not just her case but the traditional view that "Ignorance of the law is not an excuse."
Yeah, if I was in her shoes and had been coached by a lawyer as she had done, I would be claiming that I didn't know the law either and that I am just a poor, innocent person with no intent to commit an infraction of the law. That is pretty standard pretrial posturing. Guilty people claim to be innocent all the time...doesn't mean that they are.

However, I really have trouble believing that she didn't know the law. I actually believe she knowingly broke the law under the same guise that many have expressed here, "Better to be judged by 12 than carried by 6." This was a person who had been the victim of 2 robberies in the previous year (which is why she got her permit and gun, supposedly) and who was traveling across into another state late at night and going to a hotel. I have no doubt that her self protection came first in her mind, as well as it probably should, but she got caught.

However, the fact of the matter is that nobody truly knows what she did or did not know. We do know from her statements that she did take her gun and hollowpoint ammo to NJ and got busted for it after an admission to a cop. That is enough to satisfy being charges by NJ law whether we like it or not.

Quote:
The thing about this, though, is the DA (or whatever the state of NJ calls it's lawyer) DOES have discretion. IT (gender neutral) can dismiss the charges, yet has decided not to, for some reason? Maybe to pad ITS gun conviction stats for the next election cycle? I don't know, but I can suspect!
You might think so, but this isn't just a Shaneen Allen case. There are LOTS of these cases that go on in NJ. For example, all of these people have been charged, some convicted on gun and/or hollowpoint charges. Brian Aitkin, Jose Caban Jr., Quadere Austin, Keeayre R. Griffin, Shane P. Scott, Mike Goodson, Charles Fults, Dustin Reininger, Daquan Rodriguez, David Talmadge, Raheem Jacobs, Kareem Carter, Angel Deleon, etc.

If the law is bad, then it is bad regardless of what other charges some of these folks may have incurred, some of which didn't. Brian Aitkin got convicted and eventually overturned some of his charges, but still got it for the hollowpoint ammo issue. http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Brian_Aitken

That there is "Shaneen's Law" is just another bit of political posturing, I am afraid. This stuff has been going on for YEARS. I hope it passes, but as noted, there are no real chances for this. If the law is bad (and I do think it is), then it isn't just a Shaneen Allen issue. There are lots of victims of the law, whether they are good people or not. Justice isn't just for the good people.
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Old August 8, 2014, 07:37 PM   #33
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-Gov. Christie could pardon/commute the accused on his own whim; there is hardly 'no chance for rational discretion' to prevail here, and I find it hard to believe such action would be used against him either at home or in a national election (which begs the question; why has he not done so already? This is the exact kind of runaway miscarriage of justice the Governor was given power of pardon for )
I can't speak about political considerations (and that's probably off-limits here) but governors very seldom grant pardons before a conviction. In some states a governor may not even have that authority.
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Old August 8, 2014, 10:00 PM   #34
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Originally Posted by DNS
However, I really have trouble believing that she didn't know the law. I actually believe she knowingly broke the law ...
Why? I'm on the PAFOA forum often, and there are a LOT of people who don't know the NJ laws. Over the past couple of years, look at the multiple stories of (purportedly) intelligent, upright people who have been busted for carrying concealed handguns in New York City.

I think it's reasonable to believe that many people think a carry license, like a driver's license, is valid in every state. We know that's not the case, but we're the cognoscenti. People who buy one gun for self defense and just carry it, but who aren't "into" guns, should not be expected to be as knowledgeable as we are.
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Old August 8, 2014, 10:57 PM   #35
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...there are a LOT of people who don't know the NJ laws. Over the past couple of years, look at the multiple stories of (purportedly) intelligent, upright people who have been busted for carrying concealed handguns in New York City....
The sad reality, and the hodgepodge of laws in not going to change appreciably any time soon.

All of us, the cognoscenti, need to keep passing the word that if you own a gun you need to make yourself familiar with the law and how laws can vary State-to-State. Guns and owning guns is heavily regulated, and many of the laws are non-intuitive or even counter-intuitive.

Yes, we don't like the laws, and there are many reasons they ought to change or go away. But until they do, violating them will have some very undesirable consequences.

Fortunately, there are many good resources available -- including gun forums, various RKBA websites, the NRA, etc.

Ignorance is absolutely NOT bliss.
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Old August 9, 2014, 06:10 AM   #36
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This proves Ayn Rand was right about what our system would become. With enforcers and persecutors instead of the nice peace keepers of my youth. All of this BS about THE LAW. The law was intended to deal with violent criminals not destroy the lives of mothers on their way to their kids birthday party. Or was it. Any of the nice peacekeepers I remember would have just had her unload and lock it in the trunk and sent her on her way with friendly advice not to repeat her mistake. Instead we have armed predators waiting on the peaceable to make the slightest mistake and destroy their lives while allowing the lawless to maim pillage and kill with nary a slap on the wrist. It is sad what we have allowed to happen to this country.
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Old August 9, 2014, 06:16 AM   #37
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How low can law enforcement & the court system go in NJ. Didn't visit NJ on
my last trip to the US & won't go there on the next visit.
Is the NRA or similar organizations doing anything to help this person.
Has a fund been set up to help her with legal costs.
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Old August 9, 2014, 08:08 AM   #38
Armed_Chicagoan
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Originally Posted by R W
Has a fund been set up to help her with legal costs.
You can donate to her legal fund here: http://gogetfunding.com/project/shan...l-defense-fund

It's already exceeded the goal, but of course more wouldn't hurt.

eta: and only in New Jersey do hollow point bullets magically transform into "armor piercing" rounds.
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Old August 9, 2014, 09:07 AM   #39
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Sounds like they're going for options 2 and 4, full speed ahead. Expect the push for pardon after conviction, but it will only come after Reciprocity bills make it through the House (dead in Senate, of course, unless we do our jobs in Nov)

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Old August 9, 2014, 09:23 AM   #40
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How can people stand by and watch

How is it that others cannot look past their distaste for guns long enough to see a single mom, with 2 kids, going to jail.

I get its the law. I get the politicians posturing themselves for re-election.

My heartburn is towards those who should be clamoring for attention to this. Anti gun media is so against guns they are willing to sit by silently and let her rot in jail and let her children goes God knows where.

Our media, and others have been the champions of such injustice to make it public and persuade change.
Where is the black community? Why are other Moms and Dad's making a stand? Why is there no outrage?

Hate guns fine. Send her home. Do you seriously think she would return with a gun?


She absolutely did not know she was was doing.
If she was educated enough to know she was carrying illegally, then she never would have confessed she had a gun to the officer. She followed what she learned in class and that got her caught. What she didn't have was someone near her to become street smart.

Did she do wrong, yes. But jail time and kids taken from her should resonate to all parents and to everyone's core sense of right and wrong.

I don't remember the details but some politician that helped legislate gun control was caught recently on school grounds at his daughter's school. He got off. I know law isn't applied equally, my point is that they can find a way and other options should have applied to this mom.
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Old August 9, 2014, 10:42 AM   #41
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"Why is there no outrage?"

Because it's not plastered all over the local news repeatedly. It's in the newspaper, but who reads that anymore (except me)? Yeah, it's shown on on-line versions, but....where's Al Sharpton when you need him?
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Old August 9, 2014, 01:11 PM   #42
Aguila Blanca
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Originally Posted by L2R
I don't remember the details but some politician that helped legislate gun control was caught recently on school grounds at his daughter's school. He got off. I know law isn't applied equally, my point is that they can find a way and other options should have applied to this mom.
But that wasn't in NJ. (Although it was in NY ... but not NYC.)

A quick search led me to this: http://dailycaller.com/2014/02/10/gu...siting-school/
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Old August 9, 2014, 02:33 PM   #43
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thank you Aquila

I thought it was NY but my point was there are ways around this when it serves their purpose regardless of location.

There isn't an emoticon on the right that shows my anger for this and I am in another state.
I am probably dreaming but I hope she gets a good attorney and it eventually gets national attention.
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Old August 9, 2014, 03:01 PM   #44
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NRA News video: http://www.nranews.com/ginny/video/j...-in-new-jersey
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Old August 9, 2014, 08:56 PM   #45
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She absolutely did not know she was was doing.
If she was educated enough to know she was carrying illegally, then she never would have confessed she had a gun to the officer. She followed what she learned in class and that got her caught.
What class would that be? PA law does not require you to disclose to an officer that you are carrying.

People breaking the law do and say stupid things all the time, educated or not. So do scared people or people who have not had enough rest and get pulled over for driving erratically.
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Old August 10, 2014, 02:03 AM   #46
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Is there a difference between what she did and what Dwayne Ferguson did?

She illegally brought a firearm into NJ, Dwayne Ferguson illegally brought a firearm into a school. Both claimed they did not know the law.

I see no difference, yet many of you that are pleading her case and think the charges against her should be dropped are the same people that thought Dwayne Ferguson should have been punished to the full extent of the law.
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Old August 10, 2014, 07:15 AM   #47
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Since I am being cross examined....

You are correct sir or madam. I don't know that the instructor taught her to her tell a police officer she was carrying any more than you know that she had a good instructor.

I did watch the video and she said that she did as instructed and willingly told him about the gun and permit. My point was that if she was trying to sneak it into NJ, she wouldn't have told on herself.

So to try and be more accurate, I will rephrase my earlier statement to satisfy the critics.

She did wrong.
She got caught.
The law is awful.
And getting past the unknown details, it is still really cheap shot by the DA to put this woman in jail to escalate his agenda/career.
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Old August 10, 2014, 08:35 AM   #48
Aguila Blanca
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Originally Posted by DNS
What class would that be? PA law does not require you to disclose to an officer that you are carrying.
Nonetheless, some instructors tell their students that it's always "better" to disclose. In fact, Mas Ayoob "stars" as the cop in a video with Tom Gresham showing how to conduct yourself in a traffic stop, and the video teaches us to disclose.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bVReVYMLH7E

PA doesn't require training, but the woman had taken some training -- which is something pretty much all of us advocate. We don't know what her instructor(s) taught regarding duty to disclose or advisability of disclosing, but it's certainly very possible that she was taught to do so.

There are some odd and even unlawful notions out there, even among people who should know better. Just as one example, a couple of years ago I sat through a class taught by a police sergeant from a nearby local department. This man had over 20 years experience and had been with the same department for 19 years. He was also the officer in charge of the final on-the-job training for new recruits coming out of the academy.

He stated flat out that open carry is illegal in our state. Of course, it isn't, so -- being the curmudgeon that I am, I raised my hand a told him that he was wrong. He didn't scream at me, but he was visibly "unhappy" at being challenged and he did some fancy verbal footwork to try to acknowledge that, although I was right, he was also right. What it boiled down to is that he teaches his officers to arrest open carriers on that old standby charge, "creating a public disturbance."

Maybe the class she took was taught by a cop or an ex-cop. They always want us to tell them up front, even in places where it isn't required. It makes their job easier and safer -- for them.

We don't know. Her story is not implausible.

Last edited by Aguila Blanca; August 10, 2014 at 08:45 AM.
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Old August 10, 2014, 09:10 AM   #49
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Originally Posted by Aguila Blanca
PA doesn't require training, but the woman had taken some training -- which is something pretty much all of us advocate. We don't know what her instructor(s) taught regarding duty to disclose or advisability of disclosing, but it's certainly very possible that she was taught to do so.
I can't find any reference to her taking any "Training".

What is meant by training, firearms safety and shooting techniques ? This type of "trainer" may not have any type of Education class teaching the permit holder the Firearms Laws of PA and surrounding States. A firearms instructor is different then a Permit to Carry Instructor.
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Old August 10, 2014, 02:03 PM   #50
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PA doesn't require training, but the woman had taken some training...
You are correct that PA does not require permit applicants to take a class. Where did you find information indicating that she had taken training?
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