Castle Doctrine, PTA Repeal!
Let me apologize at the outset for sending such a lengthy email, but time is short for this project, and we need your help!
As you probably know, I have been very active over the last several years in an effort to get some important firearms and hunting-related legislation passed through the Missouri legislature. We are at a critical juncture with a very important piece of legislation that is loosely known as the "Castle Doctrine" bill. E-Mail messages from you to your Missouri Senator are critical to getting this legislation onto the floor for an up-or-down vote before the term expires, so I'd like to ask that you take a moment right now to do so.
THE BILL NUMBER IS: HCS SCS SB62
WHAT THIS BILL DOES:
This legislation would protect the victims of violent crimes from malicious prosecution AND/OR civil suits brought by the perpetrator or the perpetrator's family should the victim use deadly force to stop an attack. Current jury instructions place on the victim a duty to retreat -- even if the attack is in his or her own home! HCS SCS SB62 eliminates that "duty to retreat". This "duty to retreat" was never intended to be in the law and is not in any statute, but over the years it has become de facto law by being placed in the required jury instructions by judges.
Another benefit of HCS SCS SB62 is that it eliminated the redundant system of the "Permit To Acquire" for handguns. This is an old, Jim Crow era law that was designed to give local sheriffs the ability to deny black citizens the ability to own handguns. The records checks performed by the sheriff are completely redundant to those done by the National Instant Check System (NICS) at the Federal level when you buy any type of firearm -- long gun or handgun. This brings Missouri into the 21st century on that front.
Lastly, as amended in the House, this bill directs the courts to report any findings of mental incompetence to the Highway Patrol who would then forward that information to the NICS system. This is an effort to bring Missouri into compliance with current practice to prevent someone who has been adjudicated as mentally incompetent from purchasing a firearm, as they would then fail the NICS check. This might have kept the Virginia Tech shooter from buying his firearms from a licensed dealer, at least.
This bill passed the House with an overwhelming vote of 154-6, so it has strong, bi-partisan support. It is now in the hands of the Senate, but last year similar legislation died in the Senate because it wasn’t brought to a vote before the session ended. So, we need your help in the next 24-48 hours to get this bill to a vote. Senator Goodman, the bill’s sponsor, can allow the vote to happen or send the bill to a committee which might be the end of it.
WHAT YOU CAN DO:
Now is the time to call, email and write your Senator, along with the bill's sponsor Senator Goodman. Tell them/him you appreciated their vote (except Sens. Justice and Bray – they voted “NO”) for Castle Doctrine earlier this year. Say that the changes made in the House only make the bill stronger and better for victims of violent crimes by protecting victims no matter where they are attacked.
The additional changes made in the House repeal the Permit to Acquire a handgun, replacing it with the Federal NICS (Insta-check) system. Another change requires the MULES (MO Uniform Law Enforcement System) to report those adjudicated mentally incompetent to the MO Highway Patrol and NICS database in order to keep people who can/have caused harm to themselves or others from buying a gun. In addition, the changes allow peace officers and corrections officers to use the training they already have to fulfill the training requirement for a MO concealed carry permit.
Most of these changes have already been before the Senate in individual bills and have been approved by a large majority of Senators.
Ask your Senator and Senator Goodman for an *up or down vote* on Castle Doctrine in the Senate. Ask them to *vote yes* to support your rights and victims rights throughout the state of Missouri. Time is short and this is the surest way of passing a strong Castle Doctrine bill this year.
To look up who's your Senator see:
For their contact information use this link:
Also, please contact Senator Goodman (the Bill's original sponsor) directly and politely but firmly ask him to allow a straight up or down vote on HCS SCS SB 62.
He can be reached; by phone at (417) 466-3731, by fax at (573) 526-9808, and by email at firstname.lastname@example.org
Thanks in advance for taking the time from your day to help with this, and please contact me if you have any questions.