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NJ Man Jailed For Following NJ’s Gun Laws
Posted: 16 November 2010 10:33 AM   [ Ignore ]
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A man moves from Colorado back to New Jersey and brings his three handguns with him after printing out New Jersey and federal laws on gun transport laws and contacting New Jersey state police on how to properly transport them.  He stored most of his stuff at his mother’s while moving into his apartment.  Later, after growing problems with his ex, his mother called 911 because she was worried about him.  The cops show up, call him on his cell, have him come back over to his mother’s (he was driving to his apartment), and after determining he was not a danger to himself or others, the arrested him after finding his guns in his trunk, where they were properly stored (e.g. locked, unloaded, and in the trunk).  New Jersey has come pretty draconian gun laws, but it does allow for the transport of guns between home and hunting grounds or residences (a.k.a. moving).  The judge wouldn’t allow the jury to even know about NJ’s transport exemptions because he deemed it “irrelevant”.  That’s despite clear evidence he was moving and testimony to that fact from his mother, friend, and arresting officer.  The jury and even the lawyers didn’t really want to convict him, but he’s now looking at 7 years in prison.

Sucks for you Brian Aitken.

EDIT
Fixed a hilarious typo.

[ Edited: 16 November 2010 11:52 AM by Dead Monky ]
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Posted: 16 November 2010 11:13 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 1 ]
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Just another case for Jury Nullification.  The Jury should have (and could have) told the Judge to “shove it” and let the guy go.  I would have.

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Posted: 16 November 2010 11:24 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 2 ]
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Roc, for all the jury knew, the guy was transporting guns illegally.  Remember, the judge didn’t allow the jury to know about the moving exceptions.  He wouldn’t let them know about the federal exceptions either.  Their hands were tied.

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Posted: 16 November 2010 11:33 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 3 ]
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The Jury didn’t have to know the laws.  And even if the laws were against the guy they could ignore the law.  If they realized that there was no victim (and there wasn’t), then they should (and could) have let him go.  That’s what Juries are for.  They are the last line of defense of government abuse of Citizens.  The government is clearly abusing this guy.  He has harmed no one.  By no right does the government have to lock him up.

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There are more instances of the abridgement of the freedom of the people by the gradual and silent encroachment of those in power, than by violent and sudden usurpation.

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Posted: 16 November 2010 11:37 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 4 ]
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The government isn’t abusing this guy.  The local prosecutor’s office and idiot judge are.  And if the jury starts ignoring laws because they don’t like them then it sort of throws the entire process into question.

The best this guy can go for is to file an appeal.  A decent appeal lawyer could tear the trial apart.

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Posted: 16 November 2010 11:42 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 5 ]
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A judge is a person like anyone else. They have their own agenda and beliefs they bring to the table.

Isn’t that part of the reason we have a jury?

Problem is a jury of one’s peers usually means they may know little or nothing about the law. They are dependent on the authority of the judge.

Some promote the idea of a professional jury system.

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Posted: 16 November 2010 11:46 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 6 ]
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I can see several problems with a professional jury system.

But given that this judge wasn’t reappointed for questionable judgments in other cases, I’m hoping this one comes under some kind of review or scrutiny.

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Posted: 16 November 2010 11:49 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 7 ]
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Dead Monky - 16 November 2010 11:37 AM

The government isn’t abusing this guy.  The local prosecutor’s office and idiot judge are.

Ummm, the prosecutor and judge are the government.  rolleyes

Dead Monky - 16 November 2010 11:37 AM

And if the jury starts ignoring laws because they don’t like them then it sort of throws the entire process into question.

Wrong.  Why the hell do we even have juries anyway if everything comes down to some supremely worded law written in stone?  Why not just let a computer read the law word for word and then have two choices to enter: “The accused violated this law,” or “The accused did not violate this law.”  The computer would then spit out one of two verdicts: “Guilty” or “Not Guilty.”  No more need to ever have a Jury this way! 

Juries are there to, among other things, make sure laws and governments do not become unjust.  Even if something is against the law, and a Jury decides it is a stupid or unjust law, they can ignore the law and let the accused go free even if the accused did actually violate said stupid or unjust law.  That’s what Jury Nullification is all about.

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There are more instances of the abridgement of the freedom of the people by the gradual and silent encroachment of those in power, than by violent and sudden usurpation.

—James Madison

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Posted: 16 November 2010 11:51 AM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 8 ]
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Dead Monky - 16 November 2010 10:33 AM

Jew Jersey

Really?

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PC

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Posted: 16 November 2010 12:00 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 9 ]
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the PC apeman - 16 November 2010 11:51 AM
Dead Monky - 16 November 2010 10:33 AM

Jew Jersey

Really?

LOL  Oops.  My bad.  Pretty funny typo though, huh?

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Posted: 16 November 2010 12:04 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 10 ]
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Rocinante - 16 November 2010 11:49 AM

Ummm, the prosecutor and judge are the government.  rolleyes

Oh for god’s sake.  You know what I meant.  The government wasn’t coming down on this guy.  An over zealous DA and a moron judge made a travesty of things.  Neither the feds nor the state government of New Jersey wished to make an example of him.  And as I’ve brought up, the judge was denied reappointment because of questionable rulings in other cases.

Wrong.  Why the hell do we even have juries anyway if everything comes down to some supremely worded law written in stone?  Why not just let a computer read the law word for word and then have two choices to enter: “The accused violated this law,” or “The accused did not violate this law.”  The computer would then spit out one of two verdicts: “Guilty” or “Not Guilty.”  No more need to ever have a Jury this way!

Juries are there to, among other things, make sure laws and governments do not become unjust.  Even if something is against the law, and a Jury decides it is a stupid or unjust law, they can ignore the law and let the accused go free even if the accused did actually violate said stupid or unjust law.  That’s what Jury Nullification is all about.

A jury’s primary job is weigh the evidence and facts of a trial and rule on guilt.  Not interpret law.  That’s the role of judges.  The jury in this case was denied some key information by the judge and while they may have been uncomfortable with the verdict they likely felt that, given what they knew about the law and the facts of the case as presented, he was guilty.

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Posted: 16 November 2010 12:15 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 11 ]
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Dead Monky - 16 November 2010 12:04 PM

A jury’s primary job is weigh the evidence and facts of a trial and rule on guilt.  Not interpret law.

http://fija.org/

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There are more instances of the abridgement of the freedom of the people by the gradual and silent encroachment of those in power, than by violent and sudden usurpation.

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Posted: 16 November 2010 12:29 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 12 ]
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I see your link and I counter with this and this.

Also, FIJA’s taken a lot of heat for being little more than an anti-rule of law, legal sabotage group.  And for being obsessed with jury nullification to the exclusion of everything else.  But that’s what I’m finding pretty much everywhere but FIJA’s site.

But I’m no legal expert.  Never claimed to be so.

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Posted: 16 November 2010 12:37 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 13 ]
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Apparently several states empower their jurors to determine the law.

In one state the jury is free to accept or reject the statements of the judge.

Still it is a matter of law according to the particular state.

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Posted: 16 November 2010 01:17 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 14 ]
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You guys need to get a clue. You nothing of the case. The guy’s mother even said he was distraught. He moved back to his home where his ex-wife and kids are. His wife had concerns over his stability. Maybe the part about him making threats was omitted from the skewed article.(references to him being an “entrepreneur” come to mind from the article amongst other things)
In case you guys haven’t noticed people are shooting their families and then blowing their own heads off pretty commonly these days.
Peoples guns being taken away from them temporarily is pretty common in the instance of messy divorces.
There’s better examples of gun right advocacy…this sure as heck aint’ one of them. Screw this guy.
Didn’t the article mention something about him making a few trips back and forth from Jersey to Colorado? To bring his things home? Entrepeneur-yeah!
Sound like a frazzled bozo on his last nerve going back to Jersey to move in with his mom.

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Posted: 16 November 2010 01:32 PM   [ Ignore ]   [ # 15 ]
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VYA, I don’t give two craps about whether or not he was an “entrepreneur” or anything else.  By all accounts I can find, he followed federal and New Jersey state laws, the police that responded to his mother’s 911 call didn’t find him to be a danger, and he was jailed.  There very well may be more to this case, but I only have what I can find in various news articles, all of which say the same thing.  Where are you getting the stuff on him making threats anyway?

In case you guys haven’t noticed people are shooting their families and then blowing their own heads off pretty commonly these days.

Care to back that up?

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