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View Diary: Homicidal mentally ill felon obtains gun permit, arsenal, in Minnesota (324 comments)

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  •  Loss of guns for felons called firearms disability (31+ / 0-)

    It's actually called a "Federal Firearns Disability.

    I was shocked when I first read that term applied to a felon losing gun rights but the NRA has a cure for that. They've lobbied long and hard to prohibit the ATF from enforcing gun laws (such as felons legally obtaining guns) and for the states and courts to have that authority.

    From the ATF website:

    Since October 1992, however, ATF’s annual appropriation has prohibited the expending of any funds to investigate or act upon applications for relief from Federal firearms disabilities submitted by individuals. As long as this provision is included in current ATF appropriations, the Bureau cannot act upon applications for relief from Federal firearms disabilities submitted by individuals.
    A person is not considered convicted for Gun Control Act purposes if he has been pardoned, had his civil rights restored, or the conviction was expunged or set aside, unless the pardon, expungement, or restoration expressly provides the person may not ship, transport, possess, or receive firearms.
    So if a felon has his right to vote restored, he has his right to own guns restored. Some states automatically restore rights if the conviction was for a nonviolent crime.

    The NY Times did an article 2011 about the relative ease with which guns rights are restored.

    Felons Finding It Easy to Regain Gun Rights

    Here's a few people highlighted in the article:

    William James Holisky II

    Mr. Holisky has a long history of stalking and terrorizing women. A Minnesota judge reinstated Mr. Holisky’s firearms rights last year, just six months after he got out of prison for firing a shotgun into the house of a woman he had dated. She and her son were inside.

    Jason C. Keller

    Mr. Keller, disqualified because of a 1997 burglary conviction, had his gun rights restored in Washington in 2006. In 2010, he fired several shots at a woman’s house while she stood outside with one child and another was sleeping inside.

    Erik H. Zettergren

    Mr. Zettergren, who had two felony convictions on his record, got his gun rights back in Washington in December 2004. He quickly retrieved several guns he had given a friend for safekeeping. Two months later,
    Mr. Zettergren shot and killed a man at point blank range.

    Charles C. Hairston

    Mr. Hairston shot and killed a man with a shotgun in 1971. After serving 18 years in prison for first-degree murder, he was convicted in 1995 of corruption of a minor, another felony. An Ohio judge restored
    his gun rights in 2010.

    Many people think felons lose their rights to own a gun forever but the NRA has ensured that there is a cure. Restoring voting rights they aren't so concerned about. A felon can have gun rights restored but not voting rights.

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