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Tue Feb 19, 2013, 03:22 AM

California program to seize illegal guns gaining notice


Alexander Hernandez sits in the back of a police vehicle after being arrested by the Department of Justice on suspicion of illegal possession of a handgun. (Wally Skalij, Los Angeles Times / February 10, 2013)

California has the nation's only program to confiscate firearms from people who bought them legally but are now barred from having them.

By Jessica Garrison, Los Angeles Times
February 18, 2013, 6:56 p.m.

By law, Alexander Hernandez should have surrendered his gun to the state of California three years ago after a judge issued a restraining order against him for alleged domestic violence.

He didn't.

So one night recently , when the 26-year-old was at home in Whittier with his toddler, eight armed agents from the California Department of Justice banged on his door and took it from him.

Agents found the loaded .45-caliber handgun in a safe by his bed. Hernandez, who told the agents he had forgotten that he was supposed to turn in the weapon, was arrested on suspicion of illegally possessing a handgun, records show.

http://www.latimes.com/news/local/la-me-gun-recovery-20130219,0,5853388.story


As a California taxpayer, I would pay additional taxes to clear this backlog and assure this is being done in a timely matter. California's gun control laws should be a model for the nation.

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Arrow 28 replies Author Time Post
Reply California program to seize illegal guns gaining notice (Original post)
ellisonz Feb 2013 OP
SunSeeker Feb 2013 #1
davidpdx Feb 2013 #2
krispos42 Feb 2013 #3
EastKYLiberal Feb 2013 #4
krispos42 Feb 2013 #5
DanTex Feb 2013 #6
krispos42 Feb 2013 #7
DanTex Feb 2013 #8
krispos42 Feb 2013 #9
DanTex Feb 2013 #10
krispos42 Feb 2013 #12
DanTex Feb 2013 #16
thucythucy Feb 2013 #17
ellisonz Feb 2013 #25
krispos42 Feb 2013 #28
ellisonz Feb 2013 #22
jpak Feb 2013 #13
jmg257 Feb 2013 #19
jmg257 Feb 2013 #21
krispos42 Feb 2013 #27
AnotherMcIntosh Feb 2013 #26
galileoreloaded Feb 2013 #11
Lurks Often Feb 2013 #14
jmg257 Feb 2013 #18
Jeff In Milwaukee Feb 2013 #15
ellisonz Feb 2013 #23
jmg257 Feb 2013 #20
ellisonz Feb 2013 #24

Response to ellisonz (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 03:45 AM

1. Thank you Attorney General Kamala Harris!

"This is about prevention," Harris said. "This is about taking guns out of the hands of people who are prohibited from owning them, and are known to be potentially some of the most dangerous people walking around.... It's just common sense."

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Response to ellisonz (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 06:27 AM

2. Agreed

It's hard to believe California is a model for anything. ROFL

(note: I was actually born there)

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Response to ellisonz (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 07:25 AM

3. 8 armed agents.

Yikes. Of course, because it's guns, it's okay. If this was a pot dispensary being raided by 8 DEA agents, it would be an atrocity. But anyway...


Seems to me that they should be doing this the moment the restraining order is issued, not three years later.


Of course, the question now becomes "how did the cops know he had a gun?"


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Response to krispos42 (Reply #3)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 07:32 AM

4. Yeah, because pot doesn't kill 26 people. nt

 

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Response to EastKYLiberal (Reply #4)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 07:33 AM

5. Tell the Mexicans n/t

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Response to krispos42 (Reply #5)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 07:35 AM

6. You mean the Mexicans being killed by guns smuggled in from America? nt

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Response to DanTex (Reply #6)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 07:45 AM

7. No, the ones killed by drug gangs because American pot smokers can't get their highs...

...from legal alcohol.

Most of their guns are from corrupt Mexican government officials or from black market military arms sales.

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Response to krispos42 (Reply #7)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 07:59 AM

8. "Most of their guns are from corrupt Mexican government officials..." Wrong.

You've been spending too much time reading gun blogs and WorldNetDaily.

Most of the guns are smuggled in from the USA, as the gun trace data shows clearly. There is no evidence of guns coming in significant numbers from anywhere else. The idea that guns come from the military or police is an NRA talking point designed to turn attention away from the fact that lax gun laws in the US are responsible for thousands of deaths abroad as well as in the US. In fact, it's not only Mexico -- many crime guns in Canada are also smuggled in from America.

Interestingly, to tie this into the OP, there was a study done that examined the effect of different gun laws in border states on violence in Mexico, and found that California's comparatively tight gun laws are not just saving lives of Californians, but also Mexicans, by reducing the supply of illegal guns in regions near the California-Mexico border.

https://files.nyu.edu/od9/public/papers/Cross_border_spillover.pdf

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Response to DanTex (Reply #8)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 08:14 AM

9. *sigh*

This again.

They only submit guns to the ATF for tracing that they think the ATF can get a match on. They would not submit Russian-built AK-47s to the ATF, for example. And something like 90% of the guns SUBMITTED TO THE ATF came back to America... which would, presumably, also include Mexican government purchases of US-made weapons.

This was discussed a couple a years ago in decent detail. Photographs of confiscated or captured guns showed a variety of military-issue guns that you can't get from Bob's Guns in El Paso.

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Response to krispos42 (Reply #9)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 08:32 AM

10. Like I said, you've been reading too many gun blogs.

The idea that they only submit weapons that come from the US is a talking point that originated from an anonymous source quoted in a FOX News article. Factcheck.org did a follow-up, and it turns out that the main reason that guns don't get traced are clerical and human error. It's got nothing to do with guns not looking like they came from the US. Sure, there are some pictures and anecdotes of guns coming from elsewhere (it's not 100% from the US, after all), but there is no actual evidence of guns going to drug gangs in significant numbers from any source other than the US.

http://www.factcheck.org/2009/05/more-on-mexican-guns/

The fact that you are still repeating the talking point from the anonymous FOX source is a great example of the gungeon echo-chamber effect. By "it was discussed in detail" you mean that a bunch of gungeon trolls, many of whom have since been banned, all agreed that FOX was right and everyone else was wrong. Some NRA talking point starts out in right-wing media, gets repeated on blogs over and over again until the entire gunosphere believes it's true. It's the same as the talking point that "most homicides are gang-related" (really it's about 12%) or that gun ownership is at an all-time high (it was significantly higher in the early 90s, when the homicide rate was peaking), and so on.

Moral of the story: you shouldn't believe everything you read on FOX (or in the gungeon (which is often the same thing)).

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Response to DanTex (Reply #10)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 08:59 AM

12. The articles on DU that I was reading...

...were from the New York Times. The numbers were in the articles, and they're in the link you gave as well.

<snip>

As we noted in our article, Obama and others would have been accurate to say that more than 90 percent of the guns that Mexican authorities recover in crimes and submit to ATF for tracing come from the U.S. One lingering question, though, was why the Mexicans ask ATF to trace so few of the guns they recover. In fiscal 2008, trace requests came in on 7,743 guns, and in FY 2007, it was 3,312 guns, for a total of 11,055. But Mexicoís attorney general has said that authorities there recovered about 29,000 guns in that period. That means roughly 18,000 guns captured by law enforcement were not submitted for tracing.

<snip>

None of this changes what we said in our article, which is that we simply donít know whether the guns submitted by Mexico for tracing are a representative sample of all the guns recovered in criminal matters in that country. We canít conclude, therefore ó and neither can anyone else ó that 90 percent of all the crime-related firearms recovered in Mexico come from the U.S. Nevertheless, Houser said that in his view, the claim is correct. "The government of Mexico says that virtually all of the guns that they recover come from the United States. Ö Iíve been down there. Other agents have been down there. A lot of agents are there in the vicinity. They havenít seen any indication of any significant number of foreign-made guns whatsoever and the trace information seems to corroborate it. From what we know about gun trafficking, it makes sense to us. Whoís the nearest manufacturer of firearms? The United States."

And Houser thinks the debate over the precise number isnít productive. "It seems so obvious to me that I find it difficult to believe that everybodyís gotten so wound up about this," he said. "I mean, just for last year, what happens if it were 85 percent of the guns that came from the United States? Does that make much difference? Not really."

We were also able to address another matter. Some who dispute the 90 percent figure have written to us speculating that many of the weapons traced to the U.S. arenít actually smuggled across the border. They claim these guns were provided to the Mexican military or police by the United States, and were either stolen or wound up on the wrong side of the law due to corruption. Not true, according to ATF. An agency spokeswoman, Janice Kemp, told us that between 2004 and 2008 only about 1 percent of the guns Mexican authorities asked the agency to trace were found to have been legally transferred to the government of Mexico. Further, an even smaller fraction of the guns ATF researched for Mexico were traced back to the U.S. Defense Department.

Boldface mine.


If the Mexican authorities found their own guns, why would they have the ATF trace them? Presumably they have a record somewhere. And again, they're not going to ask the ATF trace military-issue, foreign-made guns.



But you're dodging the point here. Drug users in the US are responsible for criminal activity done to provide them with their drugs.

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Response to krispos42 (Reply #12)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 09:27 AM

16. LOL. You know you're in trouble when you need to highlight that selectively.

But let me summarize. Your original statement: "Most of their guns are from corrupt Mexican government officials or from black market military arms sales". There is zero evidence behind this. You mention some NYT article, which you conveniently fail to link to. Gee, I wonder why that might be. Could it be that by "NYT" you actually mean "FOXNews" or "WorldNetDaily"? Meanwhile, as the factcheck article shows, the Mexican government accounts for only about 1% of the guns.

Yes, yes, I get it, it's technically possible that every single gun that isn't traced comes from somewhere other than the US, but again, there is zero evidence of this, particularly since the main reasons why guns don't get traced have nothing to do with their appearance, but rather clerical errors or language barriers. Your denialism here reminds me of Dick Morris before the election, straining to find some possible way to explain away all the polling data, to find some plausible excuse to deny the obvious.

All of the hard evidence points to the US as the main source of guns, and many experts and officials on both sides of the border, including the head of the gun tracing at the ATF, have stated the same thing, save for a single anonymous source quoted by FOX. Like the ATF official said, we can't say if the percent is exactly 90% or 85%, but we can say with confidence that the majority come from the US.

I tell you, creationists have nothing on the NRA crowd when it comes to ignoring evidence...

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Response to DanTex (Reply #16)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 09:49 AM

17. Thank you DanTex.

The detailed debunking of right wing/NRA talking points is one of the main reasons I stop so often at DU. Folks like you perform a real community service, and I just wanted you to know it's truly appreciated.

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Response to DanTex (Reply #16)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 02:27 PM

25. I think it would be acceptable to him

If U.S. guns were only a "significant" source rather than a "main" source, it would quiet the slight pang of conscience that he's having over knowing that the political opposition put up to reasonable gun control measures is responsible for so many deaths and ruined lives.

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Response to DanTex (Reply #16)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 04:48 PM

28. Jesus Christ, give me strength.

I posted the maximum 4 paragraphs verbatim. You didn't; you paraphrased even more selectively. Yet somehow I'm the one being deceitful.

By the way, you source is 4 years old, kettle. Got anything newer? Surely that Spanish-language version is up and running now, right? Doubtless it's been updated with fresh, new information?

The discussions I referred to occurred a couple of years ago on DU2. Your assertion that I'm referring to FauxNews or WND is entirely speculation on your part, completely unfounded. Speaking of zero evidence!


The "hard" evidence in your four-year-old article is a small fraction of the total evidence available FOUR YEARS AGO, so drawing conclusions is an exercise in speculation. For example, my question about why, if the Mexican police recovered an M-16 that had been stolen from a Mexican army arsenal, they would submit that number to the ATF. Maybe they do; I don't know. Ditto for the war-surplus stuff.

The data-collection process on this whole thing is very sloppy, making drawing conclusions difficult.


HAVING SAID THAT, I'm sure a good many guns do cross the border from the US to Mexico. If we have a problem stopping living, breathing people that need food and water and protection from the heat from crossing north, then I'm going to assume that Mexico has an equal problem keeping small, inert, durable goods from slipping south.

But the full-auto stuff and the explosive stuff is not being bought here and smuggled south. You and I both know that. Maybe it's driving north from the FARCs in Columbia, or whatever.

It does not change the fact that pot and crystal meth smokers in the US drive the Mexican drug gangs and the violence they cause, and the market for the guns they do buy. You're challenging a general assertion by me to distract from the fact that there are a lot of dead Mexicans because of US drug smokers.

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Response to krispos42 (Reply #7)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 01:19 PM

22. Did you just try to blame Mexicans for "drug gangs" ???

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Response to krispos42 (Reply #3)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 09:06 AM

13. The police know everything....

yup

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Response to krispos42 (Reply #3)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 10:10 AM

19. Tracking gun sales...

"The list of prohibited owners is compiled by analysts who track gun sales back to 1996 and match them against databases listing criminal convictions, restraining orders and mental health detentions."

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Response to krispos42 (Reply #3)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 10:20 AM

21. Maybe they feared he was one of those "from my cold dead hands' types we have been reading so much

about recently.

Better safe that under-manned and under-armed

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Response to jmg257 (Reply #21)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 04:31 PM

27. Spare me.

In that case, all warrant executions and 911 calls should be done by a SWAT team. And the people keeping order at Zuccatti Park should have been an armed battalion, not the NYPD.

It's ridiculous that they would waste that many police man-hours to arrest cold-arrest a guy.


Amazing how the same site that can bemoan about the militarization of the police force, police brutality, etc., can all of a sudden think that this kind of response is okay and even appropriate.

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Response to krispos42 (Reply #3)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 02:31 PM

26. How did the cops know? Does he have an unhappy ex-wife? Did he miss any child support payments?

 

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Response to ellisonz (Original post)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 08:45 AM

11. Wait... what? On reread, worst written and incomplete article ever. I weep for journalism.

 

He has had a restraining order in place for three years, AND they are just enforcing Lautenburg?

Either this is

A. not the whole story and this guy is a shithead with a heavy record who never should have a gun or a toddler

B. a story about a gross violation of civil rights, and those cops are lucky as hell he didn't start shooting when they started to kick down the door

So ponderous.

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Response to galileoreloaded (Reply #11)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 09:07 AM

14. It's a funding issue

CA hasn't had enough money and/or officers to enforce the existing laws about felons turning in guns.

The cynical part of me thinks that they started enforcing the law and began tracking down the people who had not turned in the guns like they were suppose to do so because the CA Legislature wants to pass more gun control laws and they didn't want their failure to enforce this existing law to be thrown back in their faces.

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Response to Lurks Often (Reply #14)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 10:09 AM

18. On going for 5 years - backlogs, etc.

"California has the nation's only program to confiscate guns from people who bought them legally but later became disqualified. During twice-weekly sweeps over the last five years, agents have collected more than 10,000 guns.

But there are still more than 19,700 people on the state's Armed Prohibited Persons database. Collectively, they own about 39,000 guns. About 3,000 people are added to the list each year."

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Response to galileoreloaded (Reply #11)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 09:12 AM

15. "Started to kick down the door"

The article makes no such statement. Perhaps you should re-re-read it.

I weep for reading comprehension.

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Response to Jeff In Milwaukee (Reply #15)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 01:21 PM

23. +1

I agree, I weep for reading comprehension after reading that comment. In fact, the article clearly explicates that unless they have a search warrant they have to gain permission from the occupants to enter the residence.

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Response to galileoreloaded (Reply #11)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 10:13 AM

20. The guy broke the law and they caught him at it...don't see a violation.

They used investigation to determine he was likely still armed, contary to law.

Enforcing the gun control laws on the books - both sides gotta love it!

I imagine they brought 8 agents is exactly becuase he was armed, and an alleged criminal.

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Response to jmg257 (Reply #20)

Tue Feb 19, 2013, 01:22 PM

24. They love that "let's enforce the existing laws"

Until they're actually enforced!

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