Pentagon Shooting: Gun came from Memphis P.D.

This is a discussion on Pentagon Shooting: Gun came from Memphis P.D. within the In the News: The Good, the Bad and the Ugly forums, part of the The Back Porch category; AP Exclusive: Pentagon gun was from Tenn. police - Yahoo! News WASHINGTON – Two guns used in high-profile shootings this year at the Pentagon and ...

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Thread: Pentagon Shooting: Gun came from Memphis P.D.

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    Member Array jbone's Avatar
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    Pentagon Shooting: Gun came from Memphis P.D.

    AP Exclusive: Pentagon gun was from Tenn. police - Yahoo! News

    WASHINGTON – Two guns used in high-profile shootings this year at the Pentagon and a Las Vegas courthouse both came from the same unlikely place: the police and court system of Memphis, Tenn.

    Law enforcement officials told The Associated Press that both guns were once seized in criminal cases in Memphis. The officials described how the weapons made their separate ways from an evidence vault to gun dealers and to the shooters.

    The use of guns that once were in police custody and were later involved in attacks on police officers highlights a little-known divide in gun policy in the United States: Many cities and states destroy guns gathered in criminal probes, but others sell or trade the weapons in order to get other guns or buy equipment such as bulletproof vests.

    In fact, on the day of the Pentagon shooting, March 4, the Tennessee governor signed legislation revising state law on confiscated guns. Before, law enforcement agencies in the state had the option of destroying a gun. Under the new version, agencies can only destroy a gun if it's inoperable or unsafe.

    Kentucky has a similar law, but it's not clear how many other states have laws specifically designed to promote the police sale or trade of confiscated weapons.

    A nationwide review by The Associated Press in December found that over the previous two years, 24 states — mostly in the South and West, where gun-rights advocates are particularly strong — have passed 47 new laws loosening gun restrictions. Gun rights groups are making a greater effort to pass favorable legislation in state capitals.

    John Timoney, who led the Philadelphia and Miami police departments and served as New York's No. 2 police official, said he doesn't believe police departments should be putting more guns into the market.

    "I just think it's unseemly for police departments to be selling guns that later turn up," he said, recalling that he had once been offered the chance to sell guns to raise money for the police budget.

    "Obviously, we always need the money but I just said, `No, we will take the loss and get rid of the guns'," said the former police chief, who now works for Andrews International, a security consulting firm.

    A spokeswoman for the Memphis police said gun swaps are a way to save taxpayer money.

    One of the weapons in the Pentagon attack was seized by Memphis police in 2005 and later traded to a gun dealer; the gun used in the Jan. 4 courthouse shooting in Las Vegas as sold by a judge's order and the proceeds given to the Memphis-area sheriff's office. Neither weapon was sold by the Memphis law enforcement agencies directly to the men who later used them to shoot officers.

    In both cases, the weapons first went to licensed gun dealers, but later came into the hands of men who were legally barred from possessing them: one a convicted felon; the other mentally ill.

    The history of the two guns in the recent attacks was described by officials from multiple law enforcement agencies on condition of anonymity because they were not authorized to discuss details of the investigations. The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives provided reports on the gun traces to the investigating agencies, but is barred from publicly disclosing the results.

    At the Pentagon, gunman John Patrick Bedell carried two 9 mm handguns, one of them a Ruger.

    Law enforcement officials say Bedell, a man with a history of severe psychiatric problems, had been sent a letter by California authorities Jan. 10 telling him he was prohibited from buying a gun because of his mental history.

    Nineteen days later, the officials say, Bedell bought the Ruger at a gun show in Las Vegas. Such a sale by a private individual does not require the kind of background check that would have stopped Bedell's purchase.

    Mike Campbell, an ATF spokesman in Washington, would not confirm the details. He would only say Bedell "appears to have purchased the gun from a private seller."

    The gun already had changed hands among gun dealers in Georgia and Pennsylvania by the time Bedell bought it. Officer Karen Rudolph, a Memphis police spokeswoman, said her department traded the weapon to a dealer in 2008 for a different gun that was better for police work.

    The Ruger had sat in Memphis police storage for years at that point, after being confiscated from a convicted felon at a 2005 traffic stop.

    The trail of the gun used at the Las Vegas federal courthouse is older and harder to pin down. Johnny Lee Wicks, an elderly man enraged over cuts to his Social Security benefits, opened fire with the shotgun at the security entrance to the courthouse. He killed one officer, Stanley Cooper, and wounded another.

    Wicks, like Bedell at the Pentagon, was killed by officers' return fire.

    Before that courthouse attack, what records exist suggest officers in Memphis confiscated that gun in 1998.

    A judge in Memphis ordered the sale of the shotgun as part of a criminal case, and the proceeds of that sale went to the Shelby County Sheriff's Office, confirmed sheriff's spokesman Steve Shular.

    He said the gun dealer who bought it later sold the weapon to a dealer in Nevada. It is not clear how Wicks got the shotgun.

    Rich Wyatt, a former police chief in Alma, Colo., who now operates a gun store — and who has bought weapons from police agencies — defended the practice of police selling guns.

    "Maybe if they put the money they made selling the guns into training those officers better, they'd be better off," said Wyatt. "Nobody ever, ever questions selling a car that was used in a crime. I am sad that officers were shot, but I don't care where the guns came from. To say we need to chase guns is not the issue, we need to chase people."

    ___

    Associated Press writer Lucas L. Johnson II in Nashville, Tenn. contributed to this story.
    Note: This post may contain misspellings, grammatical errors, disorganized sentence structure, or may entirely lack a coherent theme. These elements are natural to the process of writing, and will only add to the overall beauty of the post.

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    Member Array DIXIETWISTER's Avatar
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    Rich Wyatt, a former police chief in Alma, Colo., who now operates a gun store — and who has bought weapons from police agencies — defended the practice of police selling guns.

    "Maybe if they put the money they made selling the guns into training those officers better, they'd be better off," said Wyatt. "Nobody ever, ever questions selling a car that was used in a crime. I am sad that officers were shot, but I don't care where the guns came from. To say we need to chase guns is not the issue, we need to chase people."

    Pretty much sums up this up for me...
    You may not like guns. You may choose not to own one. That is your right.
    You might not believe in God. That is your choice.
    However, if someone breaks into your home at 3AM the first two things you are going to do are:
    1) Call someone with a gun.
    2)Pray they get there in time." - A wise man

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    Quote Originally Posted by DIXIETWISTER View Post
    Pretty much sums up this up for me...
    Sell the guns used in crimes, and use the money to pay for higher 'electric bills'...them there chairs can get expensive if you use them properly, and often:yup"...I'm just sayin'...
    The last Blood Moon Tetrad for this millennium starts in April 2014 and ends in September 2015...according to NASA.

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    VIP Member Array Guns and more's Avatar
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    So this is a non story, except............
    What are the odds that both guns came from Memphis P.D.? Dang.

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    Distinguished Member Array jumpwing's Avatar
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    These cops are flooding our streets with guns! They have to be stopped!!
    "The flock sleep peaceably in their pasture at night because Sheepdogs stand ready to do violence on their behalf."
    cafepress.com/bgstudios

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    Lightbulb

    I think the best solution would be for all the agencies in the Country to check out this forum and they could find a lot of buyers if the price was right and they wouldn't have to worry about very many of them showing up in the wrong places.

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    Two guns used in high-profile shootings this year at the Pentagon and a Las Vegas courthouse both came from the same unlikely place: the police and court system of Memphis, Tenn.
    Said as if to imply the PD is somehow responsible.

    Big deal. It's like worrying over a four-door sedan that got sold back into the marketplace, found years later as the ride for a criminal, where the origins traced back to XYZ Police Dept.

    In neither case does it mean the agency had anything to do with the crime or its likelihood. All it means is that the marketplace for commodity items is fluid; and, that the PD made a bit of cash from disposing of seized items in such a way that it reduced our tax liability as citizens for the PD's services.

    The real issue is what it has always been: where do firearms get into the hands of criminals, and how to shut down those avenues.
    Your best weapon is your brain. Don't leave home without it.
    Thoughts: Justifiable self defense (A.O.J.).
    Explain: How does disarming victims reduce the number of victims?
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    Member Array cl00bie's Avatar
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    Just think, now they can sell them again!
    -Tony

    "Those who beat their guns into plowshares will plow for those who didn't." -- Thomas Jefferson

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    Member Array narcberry's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by cl00bie View Post
    Just think, now they can sell them again!
    What if this time they sell them to a Secret Service Agent who defends the life of the president?

    Will the P.D. be responsible for that heroism?
    Crime should be outlawed.

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    VIP Member Array Eagleks's Avatar
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    They sell probably 4000, and 2 end up being used in a crime... that's about ....... .05% of the guns. They don't talk about the other 3998 guns they sold. So, what's the point ?

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    Naturally, the anti-RKBA Roanoke Times made a big splash of the story

    Lead story in National & World News.

    3/4 inch headline
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    Nineteen days later, the officials say, Bedell bought the Ruger at a gun show in Las Vegas. Such a sale by a private individual does not require the kind of background check that would have stopped Bedell's purchase.
    I think that Private Sales will be the next attack on our gun rights. Look out for proposals that require a fedearl license to purchase a gun or that all guns must be sold through a FFL
    “You can sway a thousand men by appealing to their prejudices quicker than you can convince one man by logic.”

    ― Robert A. Heinlein,

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    Quote Originally Posted by pgrass101 View Post
    I think that Private Sales will be the next attack on our gun rights. Look out for proposals that require a fedearl license to purchase a gun or that all guns must be sold through a FFL
    It has been a major focus of the antis here in Virginia, for some time.

    It's already a BIG priority w/ the Brady Bunch & his dis-honor from NYC.
    Μολὼν λαβέ

    I'm just one root in a grassroots organization. No one should assume that I speak for the VCDL.

    I am neither an attorney-at-law nor I do play one on television or on the internet. No one should assumes my opinion is legal advice.

    Veni, Vidi, Velcro

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    AP Exclusive: Pentagon gun was from Tenn. police - Yahoo! News


    I absolutely despise the bias of the media - it is evident in the Headline. It makes it look like the guns are the problem, not the criminals. Most people will glance at the headline and not take the time to read through the details.
    No arsenal, or no weapon in the arsenals of the world, is so formidable as the will and moral courage of free men and women.

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    Senior Member Array Rustynuts's Avatar
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    Who gives a rat's, as long as the guns were sold legally. Non-story other than BG's will be BG's.

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