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Tag: Guns

University of Chicago Cancels Classes Today Following Online Threat of Gun Violence

University of Chicago, via Wikipedia.

University of Chicago, via Wikipedia.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The University of Chicago shut down today after the FBI warned of an online threat of gun violence on campus, The Chicago Sun-Times reports.

The Hyde Park campus “will have an increased police and security presence on and around campus, including police personnel with visible weapons and other additional measures,” University of Chicago President Robert J. Zimmer wrote.

University security personnel are keeping in close contact with the FBI, which is continuing to investigate the threat.”

FBI Special Agent John Hyde wrote this statement: “Upon learning of a possible threat, we shared information with law enforcement and University officials, as is our practice. The decision to cancel classes was made by the University. Our investigation to determine the source of the online threat is ongoing.”

The FBI said someone posted an online threat of gun violence against the school for 10 a.m. Monday.

Zimmer wrote that the university canceled classes “based on the FBI’s assessment of this threat and recent tragic events at other campuses across the country.”

Fox News Columnist: TSA Should Stop Discriminating Against Gun Owners

airport-people-walkingBy Diane Black
Fox News

If you have followed the news headlines lately, you know that the Transportation Security Administration (TSA) – the bureaucracy responsible for ensuring the safety of our nation’s travelers – has seen better days. An internal investigation released in June found that the TSA had a stunning 96 percent failure rate in detecting weapons and fake explosives.  More recently, a report from “The Today Show” revealed that NBC producers were able to pass airport security with Swiss army knives and box cutters in tow. Comforting, huh?

While knives and weapons may make it past airport security all too often, your handgun carry permit – a government-issued form of identification – will not. I speak from personal experience. On a recent flight from Nashville to Washington, I approached the TSA counter only to realize my drivers’ license was tucked away in a pocket of my jeans at home. Unfazed, I pulled out my handgun carry permit to identify myself to the agent. The card bears my picture, my full legal name, my date of birth, and a hologram with the state seal.

Further, as any firearm owner knows, the process of obtaining your handgun license is significantly more involved than obtaining a drivers’ license. It requires completion of a safety course, a fingerprint, and a thorough background check. If that’s good enough to carry a weapon, then surely it is sufficient as a form of identification to board a plane, right?

Wrong. As I handed over my permit, I was met with a look of immediate disapproval. The TSA agent informed me that handgun licenses are banned as a form of identification. After a moment of panic, I showed the agent my Congressional voting card and boarded my flight, but I vowed to do my research on the subject upon returning to Washington.

As it turns out, the TSA agent was correct. Their website explicitly states that “A weapon permit is not an acceptable form of identification” so I decided to determine what is allowed under TSA standards. According to federal law, the criteria for a “verifying identity document” is “an unexpired document issued by a U.S Federal, State, or tribal government” that includes your full name, date of birth, and photograph … In other words, everything that is on my handgun carry permit.  Compounding my frustration were the reports earlier this year that TSA was accepting Costco membership cards as a form of identification. Double standard much?

To read more click here. 

FBI Seeks Helping Tracking Down Military Guns Stolen from Worcester Army Facility

James Morales.

James Morales.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The FBI is searching for seven of 16 military guns that were stolen from a Worcester Army facility earlier this month and not recovered after the suspect in the theft was arrested, The Boston Herald reports. 

“As of right now, five of the six M-4 assault rifles and four of the ten M-11 pistols are back in the hands of law enforcement,” the FBI wrote in an announcement issued this morning. “The FBI is working aggressively, along with our federal, state and local law enforcement partners across the region, to recover the remaining seven weapons.”

A homeland man found a handful of guns at Mullaly Park near Yankee Stadium.

The suspect, James Walker Morales, 34, was arrested after authorities say he stole 10 9mm pistols and a six 5.6mm M4 rifles in a break-in Nov. 14.

Although authorities four nine of the weapons, seven are still missing, including an M-4 assault rifle.

Suspected Terrorists Are Permitted to Buy Guns in America

gunsBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Suspected terrorists may be banned from flying, but they are permitted to buy guns in the U.S., the Washington Post reports. 

Bills have been introduced to ban terrorists from purchasing firearms, but the legislation has stalled in committees because of pressure from the NRA.

“Membership in a terrorist organization does not prohibit a person from possessing firearms or explosives under current federal law,” the Government Accountability Office (GAO) concluded in 2010.

The GAO reported found that suspected terrorists tried to buy guns from American dealers at least 2,233 times between 2004 and 2014. Of those, the suspected terrorists successfully made a purchase 91% of the time.

The NRA wouldn’t comment for the story.

Millions of Firearms Purchase Records Languish in ATF Facility, Hampering Investigations

gunsBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Firearm purchase records are an important resource for law enforcement because the documents can help trace guns used in crimes.

Trouble is, millions of those records are languishing in cardboard boxes at the government’s National Tracing Center because they have not been processed, the USA Today reports. 

The records – as many as 1.6 million documents a month – come from defunct firearm dealers who must hand over their records to an ATF facility.

The USA Today reports:

The avalanche of records is a little-noticed yet critical component of a newly escalating firearms debate that underscores both the strained operations of the federal government’s chief gun enforcement agency and the strength of a powerful gun rights lobby intent on preventing the creation of a national gun registry, law enforcement analysts say.

The dysfunctional document management system exists even as ATF examiners are faced with a steadily increasing demand for tracing guns used in crimes — 364,441 requests last year — and as the agency seeks to assist local law enforcement authorities in a number of U.S. cities, including Chicago, St. Louis, Milwaukee and Baltimore, where there have been dramatic spikes in gun-related violence.

“It’s really sad,” said Ben Hayes, a former ATF official who for more than a decade oversaw parts of the tracing center’s operations. “It’s pathetic.”

Congress Considers Boosting Funding for ATF to Crack Down on Gun Trafficking

gunsBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Some members of Congress want to increase ATF funding to crack down on gun trafficking.

Rep. Hakeen Jeffries, D-Brooklyn, has proposed a $60 million funding hike, in part dedicated to stopping the flow of illegal guns into New York, the Daily News reports. 

“The guns used to commit crimes in New York City aren’t manufactured in New York City and they’re not purchased in New York City. They’re coming from states in the deep South, up the I-95 corridor, and from the neighboring state of Pennsylvania,” Jeffries said Monday at a City Hall press conference.

The agency’s funding would be $1.24 billion.

“Why do we continue to underfund this agency in the midst of a gun violence epidemic in America?” Jeffries said. “For years Congress has failed to adequately fund the ATF. This has been part of a deliberate effort to prevent the ATF from doing its job. That is shameful. Over the next few weeks we have an opportunity to correct the situation.”

Other Stories of Interest

Defense Attorneys: Jury Should Know How Guns Ended Up at Scene of Murder of ATF Agent Brian Terry

Brian Terry

Brian Terry

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The murder of Border Patrol Agent Brian Terry underscored the recklessness of ATF’s gun-walking scandal.

Now defense attorneys for two men accused of killing Terry want a jury to hear how the weapons ended at the crime scene, KVOA.com reports. 

The guns were tracked by the ATF, knowing that the AK-47 purchases were illegal. The idea, which has been widely criticized, was to find out where the guns were going.

“In a homicide prosecution the source of the weapon(s) used to perpetrate the alleged crime is and always should be relevant. In an assault prosecution the source of the weapon(s) is and always should be relevant,” the defense attorneys wrote.

The federal government doesn’t want a jury to hear about the scandal.

Terry Nichols Wants His Seized Guns Returned to His Family to Help His Children

courtroomBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Terry Nichols, who helped in the Timothy McVeigh bombing in Oklahoma City, wants his seized guns turned over to his family.

Information disclosed in federal court reveals that the FBI has most of the guns, the Oklahoman reports. 

Nichols is serving life in prison and wants the guns turned over to one his sister or one of his two ex-wives so that the weapons can provide financial support for some of his children.

The guns were seized from his home in Herington, Kansas.