News Roundup

Yet again this week, our nation confronts the tragedy of a mass shooting.  Nineteen-year-old Nikolas Cruz has been charged with 17 counts of murder following an attack on Wednesday at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Florida.  Cruz was a student at the school but had been expelled.  For perspective on where this incident falls among the more than 40 active shooter episodes at schools in the United States since 2000, 12 people were killed at Columbine and 26 were killed at Sandy Hook; two were killed last month in Kentucky.  Three of the 10 deadliest mass shootings in modern United States history have occurred in the last five months.  Keep reading for more news.

Florida.  As is often the case with mass shootings in America, Cruz was armed with an AR-15 style rifle.  The Tampa Bay Times reports that Cruz bought the rifle legally last year.  Back in November while discussing the deadliest mass shooting by one person in the history of Texas, the News Roundup noted the reasons why AR-15’s are both popular and controversial.

A series of articles discussing the history of the weapon and the controversy surrounding it were published last year in The Atlantic.  Those articles are here, here, here, and here.  Those articles discuss the much-debated question of the lethality of the AR-15 relative to other firearms, with the articles arguing that the rifles are especially deadly.  Typifying the opposing view, a master firearms instructor told USA Today that mass shooters often have an unsophisticated understanding of firearms and choose the AR-15 without realizing that much more dangerous alternatives are readily available.

Unusual Defendants.  There were numerous criminal law stories this week featuring unusual defendants.  A Raleigh defense attorney was charged with felony larceny for allegedly taking money out of another person’s misplaced wallet at the Wake County courthouse.  Also in Wake County, a patent attorney was charged with taking indecent liberties with a child.  In Durham County, a former deputy was convicted of taking indecent liberties with a child while serving as a school resource officer.  Out in Seattle, the chief counsel for the city’s Immigration and Customs Enforcement field office was charged with wire fraud and identity theft for attempting to steal the identities of seven people who were subject to immigration proceedings.

AWIF.  Big news folks: Jeff Welty’s 2017 Update to Arrest Warrant and Indictment Forms (6th ed.) has been released and is available to download for free.  The 2017 update is jam-packed with fourteen updated or completely new forms and a comprehensive table of contents which indicates the most recent version of every form in the manual.

Murder Trial.  Trial began this week for Chad Cameron Copley, a Raleigh man charged with murder for shooting and killing Kouren-Rodney Bernard Thomas, who was outside Copley’s home after leaving a party in the neighborhood.  The shooting made national news when it happened in 2016 and drew comparisons to the Trayvon Martin case.

Naloxone Donation.  Regular readers know that Asheville teenager Peter King was ahead of the curve in terms of donating naloxone to local law enforcement agencies in need of the opioid overdose recovery drug.  WUNC says that the Aetna Foundation is getting in on the action, announcing this week that it will donate $1 million to the North Carolina Harm Reduction Coalition to purchase and distribute naloxone in rural parts of the state.  The donation is part of Aetna’s plan to donate $6 million to North Carolina to combat the opioid epidemic.

Romance Moves.  Regardless of what you did for the special someone in your life this Valentine’s Day, it pales in comparison to the efforts of Christian Gerald Desgroux of Raleigh.  Yes, unless you fraudulently donned the uniform of a three-star Army general and told security officers at SAS headquarters that you had clearance from the White House to land a helicopter on the company’s soccer fields for the purpose of picking up an employee and flying her to Fort Bragg for a classified briefing, I’m sorry to say that you’ve been outdone.

6 thoughts on “News Roundup”

  1. The weapon is not at fault here.

    The FBI who was made aware of the suspect’s threats knew, or should have known, the suspect’s propensity for violence is at fault.

    The teachers and principal who knew, or should have known, the suspect’s propensity for violence are at fault.

    The doctors and mental health professionals treating the suspect who knew, or should have known, the suspect’s propensity for violence and failed to involuntary commit him as a danger to himself or others are at fault.

    The problem here is not an inanimate object, a gun, which is just a tool. The problem here is a liberal collective of human beings who would rather turn their heads and ignore the clear signs that were presented to them so that a liberal thug would act out and provide them with what they think would be more ammunition to disarm Americans.

    This will not work. In fact, you can expect to see punitive repercussions for malfeasance in office and and failures to report which will result in terminations of those who refuse to do their jobs. The adults are back in charge now.

    • Kudos to you, for finally figuring out that liberals are behind all these school shootings. Why, the FBI is just crawling with them, and everyone knows the liberals are crazy for guns! Every time liberals try to ban them, it’s just a false flag operation to actually get MORE guns into circulation. And of course the shooters themselves are liberal thugs, because only liberals like to shoot guns, especially in schools.

      Or maybe, just maybe, if such weapons were banned, maybe it would be less likely a 19-year-old kid in Florida would be able to kill 17 of his schoolmates. Could he have killed as many people with a 9mm with a 13-round magazine? Maybe, but not without reloading at least once. Would that have given some of the victims a chance to escape death? Maybe, maybe not. But to say that the weapon plays no role here is not only asinine, it’s dangerous. The choice of weapon makes all the difference. Will some people break the law anyway, even if these weapons are banned? Sure, but that doesn’t mean we shouldn’t have laws banning certain things or activities. Otherwise, there’d be no point to any laws at all.


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