AWB Investigations and Prosecutions in Mass.

GSG

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Once every few weeks, someone wants to know whether or not the AWB is being enforced in Massachusetts. The short answer for you all is that it is being enforced, even when it involves an LTC holder (although in most if not all of these cases, there were other law violations in the mix as well). It's worth noting that many of these cases involve AR's/AK's; in three of them the rifle appeared to be legal in the first place.

My intent with this thread is not to create an all inclusive "Is my rifle/mag/mother-in-law pre-ban?" thread, but to identify as many instances as possible where the law has been enforced, to help people get a feel for the water, and maybe to even find some examples of the specific standards being applied to identifying AWB related items.

There is a difference between standard possession of a large capacity magazine without an LTC [MGL 269-10(m)] and possession of post-ban rifles/shotguns/large capacity magazines [MGL 140-131m]. I've picked through these to make sure that these are actual AWB charges to the best of my ability. Keep in mind that in many cases we're trying to piece together the details from news stories written by reporters who don't know guns or gun laws. I've done my best to find the correct info in these cases. Read the individual discussion threads for more particulars on various cases. AWB violations are felony charges.

I'm also really, really, really trying to limit this to documented cases that can be examined in some manner, and not anecdotal reports of "My best friend's uncle had a cousin who's neighbor's former roommate dated a girl who said she got arrested for..."

If you spot any others that can be reasonably verified, let me know and I'll post them up.

I have searched extensively for Mass. caselaw on the subject but I haven't found any SJC or appeals AWB cases. The ones listed below don't seem to have made it out of their respective District or Superior courts.

January 2003: Theft ring with assault weapons

http://www.mass.gov/Cago/docs/ourorganization/fy03_annual_report_final.pdf

• Commonwealth v. Philip O’Neill and Commonwealth v. Kevin O’Neill (Special
Investigations and Narcotics Division) The above-captioned defendants were arrested as a result
of an undercover investigation of numerous OxyContin robberies by a nine-plus member ring
operated out of Charlestown, Massachusetts. The investigation was led by the Massachusetts
State Police Narcotics Unit in the Office of the Attorney General.

On January 30, 2003, the defendants, Philip O’Neill and Kevin O’Neill, pleaded guilty before
Judge Catherine White in Middlesex Superior Court.
Philip O’Neill pleaded guilty to the following charges: (1) Armed Robbery while Masked; (2)
Conspiracy to Commit Armed Robbery while Masked (2 counts); (3) Attempt to Commit Armed
Robbery while Masked; (4) Unlawful Possession of a Firearm; (5) Possession of an Assault Weapon; (6) Possession of a Large Capacity Weapon; (7) Possession of a Large Capacity Feeding Device; (8) Assault with a Deadly Weapon; (9) Trafficking of Opium Derivative; and (10) Conspiracy to Commit Trafficking. Judge White sentenced Philip O’Neill to a State Prison term of 10 to 12 years with three years of probation from and after the term of incarceration. Judge White also ordered the defendant to pay a $90 Victim Witness Assessment Fee.

Kevin O’Neill pleaded guilty to the following charges: (1) Conspiracy to Commit Armed Robbery
while Masked; (2) Attempt to Commit Armed Robbery while Masked; (3) Larceny of a Motor Vehicle; (4) Unlawful Possession of a Firearm; (5) Possession of Ammunition without Firearms Identification; (6) Possession of an Assault Weapon; (7) Possession of a Large Capacity Weapon; (8) Possession of a Large Capacity Feeding Device; and (9) Obliterated Serial Number. Judge White sentenced Kevin O’Neill to a state prison term of three to five years with three years of probation from and after the term of incarceration. Judge White also ordered the defendant to pay a $90 Victim Witness Assessment Fee.

The advocate assigned to the O’Neill cases provided victim assistance and witness management to
the numerous victims and witnesses present during the commission of the robberies. The advocate, along with the Massachusetts State Police, conducted many in-person meetings with the victims (pharmacy employees and customers) to discuss the status of the case and to address safety concerns. In particular, the advocate assisted two originally reluctant victims, a customer of the pharmacy and her 12-year-old son, both of whom were present during the robbery and were threatened with a gun by one of the defendants. The advocate provided counseling referrals and notification regarding case updates. The advocate also provided notification of disposition and post-conviction follow-up.
Not much info here.

December 2004: CO with a personally owned AR-15

Came across this one in a civil service dispute from a Correctional Officer, Weinrebe v. DOC, CSC Case No. D1-06-347. Pages 18-25 discuss the criminal case involving his AR-15. He was an LTC holder, the gun was discovered during LTC revocation proceedings due to a report of domestic violence/209A.

http://www.mass.gov/Eoaf/docs/csc/decisions/discipline/weinrebe_joel_112907.pdf

The case says in part:

62. One of the items removed from Appellant’s home was a “Colt AR 15A3 .223 CAL
serial #LBD001907 labeled “Restricted Military/Government Law
Enforcement/Export Use only.” (Exhibit 32; see also Testimony of Stanton, V. 2, p.
180)
then later:

67. Detective Stanton testified that after making these observations on the AR15, he
made phone calls and inquires to Colt Manufacturing Co., to the DOC, and
subsequently forwarded a criminal complaint regarding the weapon to the district
attorney’s office. (Testimony of Stanton, V. 2, pp. 140-141)
68. Detective Stanton testified that Colt Manufacturing Co. informed him that the AR15
that was confiscated from Appellant’s home left the factory in 1996. (Testimony of
Stanton, V. 2, p. 141) The Appellant also testified that the gun was manufactured in
1996. (Testimony of Appellant, V. 3, p. 47).
then later:

79. The Appellant testified that the weapon does not have a flash suppressor, bayonet lug, or folding or collapsible stock. (Exhibit 48)

80. On cross-examination when asked if his class A license permitted him to possess
guns that were banned and marked for military/government use only, the Appellant
first responded, “I don’t know of any.” Then when asked when his AR 15 was
stamped for law enforcement/military/government use only, the Appellant stated:
“Because a federal law that was probably passed in1994 and when I went to buy
magazines for my guns that were high capacity magazines, they were all stamped the
same thing
and I had to show my driver’s license, my handgun license, my work I.D.,
and my badge to be able to buy those things.” (Testimony of Appellant, V. 3, p. 142)
Reading between the lines, it appears that the guy bought a marked AR-15 that had the evil features removed (meaning it was no longer an AW), and marked post ban mags, but was charged for the legal rifle and not for the illegal magazines. There's some interesting info there regarding how the weapon was ID'ed.

December 2005: Dorchester homicide

You can read details of this murder in the SJC case Comm. v. Carnes, 457 Mass. 812 (2010) and in the Suffolk DA's brief.

The SJC case says in part:

The defendant was convicted also of three counts of armed robbery; two counts of possession of a firearm without a firearm identification (F.I.D.) card; possession of a large capacity firearm; and larceny over $250.

...

Two guns were often seen in the basement: an AK-47 assault rifle and a Mosberg pump action shotgun. These weapons were used for sound effects in recording music and also for the protection of expensive recording equipment. A "rule" of the group was that all weapons must "come into the basement unloaded" to avoid accidents
It appears that the charge for the AK was originally filed as an AWB offense based on one of the DA's press releases, and later modified to the more expansive (and as drgrant has often pointed out, much easier to prosecute) MGL 269-10(m) "large capacity" violation.

2006-2007: Online threats case & SKS rifle

http://www.mass.gov/?pageID=cagopressrelease&L=1&L0=Home&sid=Cago&b=pressrelease&f=2007_09_26_thompson_sentence&csid=Cago

WORCESTER – Today, a Shrewsbury man pleaded guilty and was sentenced in connection with making threatening statements over the Internet and the unlawful possession and storage of weapons and ammunition. Darren P. Thompson, age 24, entered a change of plea from not guilty to guilty for possession of a large capacity weapon, possession of an assault weapon, improper storage of a large capacity firearm, possession of ammunition without an FID card, possession of a shotgun without an FID card, and the threatened presence of a deadly weapon. Worcester Superior Court Judge Kathe Tuttman sentenced Thompson to serve two and a half to three years in State Prison to be followed by five years probation on an electronic monitoring bracelet. Judge Tuttman also ordered as part of Thompson’s probation conditions that he not possess any weapons, that he undergo a psychiatric evaluation and comply with all recommended treatment.
and

On November 30, 2006, during the course of the investigation, State Police assigned to the Attorney General’s Office executed a search warrant at Thompson’s home where they seized an SKS large capacity rifle, 22 rounds of ammunition, his computer, and homemade weapons including a bat with nails sticking out of it. Thompson was arrested that same night.
We also discussed this here on NES.

http://www.northeastshooters.com/vbulletin/threads/14879-No-bail-for-suspect-in-online-threat-case

August 2008: Incident w/ AR purchased from an FFL

http://www.northeastshooters.com/vbulletin/threads/43044-Stay-away-from-Universal-Firearms-in-Wake-Field

The NES User DSoM11 posted this:

I'm a Mass resident with a valid LTC-A. Had filed an FA-10 yet. The Cheif of Police in town I purchased the rifle from called the Cheif of Police in my town as a "Courteous" to inform him that a resident had purchased an AR15. The local PD gave me a call telling me this and wanted to take a look. I glady obliged. It ultimately came down to a flash suppressor issue. When I ordered the rifle to begin with one came in that was Non-Mass complaint and was sent back. When the other came in I was told it was ok by folks at the shop. Taking their word for it I went about my way.
Then later:

Yes, after some research the shop did sell me a legal rifle. Everyone involved was told it was illegal in Mass to possess. So my local PD tried to do me a favor in giving the rifle back to them on the grounds that they return my money. They agreed, they got the rifle back and I'm still out $1200 and have no reason to believe I'll ever see it. As for the police taking a look at the rifle. I live in a town where it is VERY hard to get an LTC-A. Near impossible. I didnt want to give them any reason to revoke it. Granted, I could have done a few things very differently. But in the end it boils down to an agreement that wasn't kept and the blatant slaps in the face I've taken. I am still going to pursue this. Will I get anywhere? Not likely.
Basically because of RI state law, the PD in his town of residence found out that he had purchased an AR from an FFL. The police inspected it and believed that it was not AWB compliant when it actually was. Chaos ensued. The owner was not charged, but this could definitely be called an investigation of a potential AWB violation.


September 2008 to August 2010: Peter Manso's AR-15

http://www.northeastshooters.com/vbulletin/threads/43200-Indictment-for-Manso-weapons-confiscated

The news story said in part:

The police saw the weapons when they responded to a burglar alarm in late December, while Manso was in California. They returned the next day with a warrant and seized three unlicensed weapons — a snub nose .38 revolver, a .22 caliber rifle and a Colt AR15 government carbine, an assault weapon, with a 30-round clip. Possession of the assault weapon carries a possible 10-year prison sentence and up to a $10,000 fine.
It's worth noting that the police report for this case stated in part:

"...inside of the case was a Colt Pre ban AR15 with a 30 round magazine in it."
Meaning the officer on scene ID'ed it as pre-ban, but he was charged anyway. [thinking] The charges were later "thrown out" by the courts. Details are shaky on this, all we got was a one line update in the paper.

February 2009: Post ban mag investigation

http://www.northeastshooters.com/vbulletin/threads/57694-maybe-I-am-just-too-suspicious

The individual at the root of this lengthy thread was investigated for his possession of post ban mags when it came to light after other legal issues.
 
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GSG

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(continued)

January 2010: National Guardsman with post ban guns

A ton of info on this. Looks like he was an LTC holder based on his charges. I'm only posting limited excerpts from the stories that reference the AWB issues here.

http://www.berkshireeagle.com/ci_14291037

Pittsfield police find an arsenal
By Benning De La Mater, Eagle Staff
Updated: 01/29/2010 06:52:41 AM EST
Little information was available as of press time, but police said they found dozens of guns -- including an AK-47 and other "high-powered automatic weapons" -- and a "serious" cache of ammunition inside the man's city apartment. At least nine guns, some of them loaded, were also found inside his car.
http://www.berkshireeagle.com/ci_14298974

Man in court over guns
By Scott Stafford
Updated: 01/30/2010 12:10:16 AM EST
Jia Tian pleaded not guilty in Central Berkshire District Court to one count of improperly storing a large capacity firearm, and he was ordered held on $20,000 cash bail at the Berkshire County Jail & House of Correction. An assistant district attorney said additional charges will likely be filed against him as police continue to examine and identify the weapons and ammunitions.

Tian is a former National Guardsman, according to court records. His attorney said Tian has no criminal record.
When the fiancée confirmed to police he had weapons, police got her permission to search their East Street home.

Thursday night at 8:55, Tian turned himself in to police at the station, saying he heard authorities were looking for him. He allowed police to search his 2004 Accura, where they found more guns. Police also confiscated a valid concealed weapon license and a valid hunting license.

Police confiscated the weapons and ammunition based on the threat Tian may have done harm to himself or others. The weapons found in Tian’s home included an M4, a Mosin-Nagent with armor-piercing rounds, a 12-gauge shotgun, a .22-caliber long-scoped rifle, and a .22-caliber scoped Magnum rifle. From his car, police confiscated nine more weapons, including a German-made assault rifle in the front seat with several 50-round magazines loaded with armor-piercing rounds, and pistols. Police also found a copy of a manual on police use of force policies and several of Tian’s writings, some containing references to violence.

In the home, police also found ammunition without finding the weapons they could be used in. They included a high-capacity AK-style fully loaded magazine, several .22-caliber and .45-caliber magazines, and a fully loaded 30-round M4 magazine for .223-caliber rounds, which is illegal to possess. Police also found brass knuckles, four double-edged knives, and several swords.
http://www.berkshireeagle.com/local/ci_14329845

Thursday, Feb. 04
PITTSFIELD -- Police have filed 12 more charges against a local man arrested last week for possession of a cache of weapons and ammunition found in his home and car.
Investigators filed new charges Tuesday against 28-year-old Jia Tian after bringing in a firearms law expert who examined the 13 weapons and dozens of rounds various ammunition, including armor piercing bullets for use in assault rifles, seized from his East Street home and car last Thursday.

Tian was arraigned Friday on one count of improperly storing a large capacity firearm, to which he pleaded not guilty. Later that day, he posted $20,000 cash bail and was released from the Berkshire County Jail & House of Correction.

Tuesday, he was charged with seven counts of the sale or possession of an assault weapon, one count of improper storage of a large capacity firearm, and four counts of improper storage of a firearm. Tian is scheduled to be arraigned on the additional charges on Feb. 19.
Original press release:

http://www.mass.gov/?pageID=berpressrelease&L=1&L0=Home&sid=Dber&b=pressrelease&f=20100323_tian_jia&csid=Dber

He pled guilty in August 2010 and is now a convicted felon.

http://www.mass.gov/?pageID=berpressrelease&L=1&L0=Home&sid=Dber&b=pressrelease&f=20100818_tian_jia&csid=Dber

December 2010: Illegal sale of post-ban AW

http://www.northeastshooters.com/vbulletin/threads/116544-Guns-seized-son-and-father-charged-in-latest-Lowell-SWAT-raid

The news story in that case said in part:

Another joint investigation by Lowell police and the ATF that began last January netted four suspects, including a mother and her two sons, who have been charged with firearms trafficking.

David Christian, 25, of 53 Lane St., and Jonathan Dickie, 25, of 136 Smith St., were arrested in March on federal charges of dealing firearms without a license. Christian's case is still pending, while Dickie pleaded guilty in federal court on Oct. 14 and will be sentenced Dec. 10. Both men are facing five years in federal prison, according to Lowell police Capt. Jonathan Webb.

As the investigation continued, Dickie's mother, Carol Dickie, 50, and his younger brother, Richard Dickie, 23, also of 136 Smith St., were arrested in August. Carol Dickie is facing state charges of unlawful possession of firearms, while her younger son is facing charges of unlawful sale of an assault rifle and a large-capacity firearm. Their cases are pending.

Christian and Jonathan Dickie are being held in federal custody. Carol Dickie and Richard Dickie are out on bail on the state charges.

Webb said more arrests are expected in that investigation, which has already resulted in the seizure of 15 handguns, an AK-15 assault rifle and a sawed-off shotgun.

Webb said the weapons sold by this ring came from New Hampshire. They were bought by "straw purchasers," who meet firearm-purchase requirements, including the ability to pass a criminal background check. Those people then turned the guns over to Christian and the Dickies to sell, he said.


Read more: http://www.lowellsun.com/ci_16768002?source=rss_viewed#ixzz19lwgewOP
Based on the charges listed, it appears that the guy nabbed for the AWB violation and federal charges of dealing guns without an FFL had an LTC. Hopefully more info will make it to the news as the case progresses.

February 2011: News article listing AW incidents

As discussed in this NES thread:

http://www.northeastshooters.com/vbulletin/threads/123557-Criminals-bringing-illegal-guns-to-MA

Based on the wording of this news article, the author clearly doesn't understand the difference between the many different types of guns and the laws surrounding them, but the article includes quotes from LE who are referencing the AWB in Mass.

An excerpt:

Among the recent incidents:

•     In Brockton on Thursday night, state police gang cops, FBI agents and Brockton detectives seized a loaded AK-47 from an alleged marijuana dealer;

•     On Jan. 25 in Mashpee, a revenge-seeking gunshot victim was arrested for allegedly brandishing a TEC-9 submachine gun;

•    On Jan. 14 in Holyoke, police busted a career felon who allegedly had a loaded AK-47 and 25 grams of cocaine;

•    On Jan. 7, Boston police shot 21-year-old reputed gang member Marvin Veiga after he allegedly pointed a loaded AR-15 assault rifle at officers during a foot chase;

• In November 2010 in Lynn, cops seized 50 guns in a gang sweep, including two AK-47s and two assault rifles; and

•      On Oct. 23, 39-year-old mom Tahitian Milton was slain by an unknown gunman who opened fire with an AK-47 in a Boston convenience store.
Open case: Possession of post-ban rifle and magazine

From post #3 of this very thread.

I have a case going now where a man is charged with 13 State weapons violations including possession of an non mass compliant assault weapon and a Hi cap feeding device (post 1994). (The federaL charges will be next.) If you'd like I will let you know the outcome, but it will be a while before it goes to trial.
Date Unknown: Post-ban mag prosecution

http://www.northeastshooters.com/vbulletin/threads/101651-Question-About-What-The-Dealer-Told-Me-(first-time-gun-owner)

In response to the statement "Nobody's ever been charged with an AWB violation in MA" a Mass. gunlawyer responded with:

WRONG. I have defended someone charged w/multiple counts of unlawful possession of a 'Large Capacity Feeding Device."
This led to the follow up query "You say "unlawful" possesion. Did the defendant simply not have the license to permit possesion, or was it a case of possesion of a "post-ban" AWB item?" He replied:

No more details were made available.

Date Unknown: Post-ban mag investigation

http://www.northeastshooters.com/vbulletin/threads/111393-How-to-identify-pre-ban-magazines

LenS said:

Glock's head of their Legal Dept told me of two different MA DAs contacting his office in an attempt to prosecute people. Glock Legal does NOT cooperate, but no idea what became of it and never asked who contacted him.
Obviously there aren't many details in these last two cases, and they border on a "Six Degrees of Kevin Bacon" type tale. However the people who posted them know more than most on the subject.

I also found several Sentencing Commision reports that reference people incarcerated for these offenses.

http://www.mass.gov/courts/admin/sentcomm/surveysentpractices.pdf
http://www.mass.gov/courts/admin/sentcomm/fy2002internet.pdf
http://www.mass.gov/courts/admin/sentcomm/fy2004survey.pdf
http://www.mass.gov/courts/admin/sentcomm/fy2005survey.pdf
http://www.mass.gov/courts/admin/sentcomm/fy2006survey.pdf
 
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Tackdriver

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I have a case going now where a man is charged with 13 State weapons violations including possession of an non mass compliant assault weapon and a Hi cap feeding device (post 1994). (The federaL charges will be next.) If you'd like I will let you know the outcome, but it will be a while before it goes to trial.

Dave
 

Rob Boudrie

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Meaning the officer on scene ID'ed it as pre-ban, but he was charged anyway. The charges were later "thrown out" by the courts. Details are shaky on this, all we got was a one line update in the paper online.
This appears to be a CA example. CA is known for aggressively prosecuting AW ban violations, and the mag grandfathering requires it be "personally possessed in CA" before the Caliban. If one is caught with an AR15 (non-neutered) without the "grandfathered registration papers", one can expect a felony charge for the gun and an additional felony charge for each high cap magazine.

There was a case in CA where someone was plead guilty to AW possession of a gun that was later proven (by competent private, rather than public, defense counsel) not to be an AW. The owner had no funds and plead guilty with time served (about 4 weeks). When a gun rights attorney brought an appeal, the prosecution successfully argued he had missed a deadline and had no right to have a court hear the facts of his appeal and he remains a convicted felon.

I have a case going now where a man is charged with 13 State weapons violations including possession of an non mass compliant assault weapon and a Hi cap feeding device (post 1994). (The federaL charges will be next.) If you'd like I will let you know the outcome, but it will be a while before it goes to trial.

Dave
The question keeps getting asked "Does anyone know of a prosecution solely for violating the AW ban?" and not including other charges. Lots of people provide examples, but there always appear to be other issues or charges.

So, the question remains on the table awaiting an answer.
 

terraformer

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I have a case going now where a man is charged with 13 State weapons violations including possession of an non mass compliant assault weapon and a Hi cap feeding device (post 1994). (The federaL charges will be next.) If you'd like I will let you know the outcome, but it will be a while before it goes to trial.

Dave
If federal charges are in the wings, this would seem he was a prohibited person or something else was going on that is big enough to warrant the attention. Please do let us know what the outcome is. But the question as posed (as rob stated below) is usually did any licensed LTC holder ever get charged, and then were they convicted, of an AWB violation.

I suspect that plenty have been "investigated" for it (in conjunction with why they garnered the attention of the police to begin with), some may have been charged and negotiated themselves (via their capable lawyer) out of it or into a plea deal but we know of no actual convictions or can't confirm plea deals coming from AWB charges for licensed individuals.

To add, this is contrasted by AWB violations occurring in CA where there are charges simply from people being spotted by undercovers at gun ranges.
 
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The question keeps getting asked "Does anyone know of a prosecution solely for violating the AW ban?" and not including other charges. Lots of people provide examples, but there always appear to be other issues or charges.

So, the question remains on the table awaiting an answer.
Exactly right! After all this time, I don't think anyone here can point to a single such case.

Doesn't mean that the law can be ignored... hardly! ... but it sure does indicate a relative disinterest in splitting hairs on the part of the police in the absence of more recognizable criminal behavior.
 
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GSG

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I have a case going now where a man is charged with 13 State weapons violations including possession of an non mass compliant assault weapon and a Hi cap feeding device (post 1994). (The federaL charges will be next.) If you'd like I will let you know the outcome, but it will be a while before it goes to trial.

Dave
I would definitely like to hear how that case pans out. I'm specifically interested in what methods the court will use to prove or disprove the AW status of the items involved, and how high the case goes. Chances are the ID-ing aspect will only be discussed if the defendant contests that part of the charges, although a few times I've seen caselaw where the courts looked into a little detail like that for themselves. I'd like to be able to have something to point to that tells people what standards they will be held to legally. For instance, if the court accepts expert testimony regarding different generations of mag bodies, or if they revert to the old federal standard that says "no LE marks then pre-ban."

Either way thank you, I look forward to hearing more about it.

This appears to be a CA example.
You mean prosecuted in the same manner that they're prosecuted in CA, right? Manso lived/lives on the Cape. [grin]

The question keeps getting asked "Does anyone know of a prosecution solely for violating the AW ban?" and not including other charges. Lots of people provide examples, but there always appear to be other issues or charges.

So, the question remains on the table awaiting an answer.
In the December 2010 case I listed from Lowell, the only charges that guy was hit with was selling an AW (140-131m), and unlawful sale of a large cap firearm (269-10F). The 269-10F charge makes sense because all AW's are also "large capacity," so an LTC holder could be charged with this in addition to the "sales" charge in 140-131m if they sold something that's post-ban (the case from Feb. of 2009 appears to have involved this very scenario), similar to how a dealer could be charged with violating 140-131m as well as 140-123 if they sold one. In caselaw the courts have found that duplicate charges such as this are OK, but we can discuss that elsewhere if someone wants to, I'd like to keep this thread on track.

Notice he was not charged with other related offenses, so it seems like he does have an LTC, but when his family member got busted they dug into his life and found a violation. It's also possible that they chose not the throw the book at the guy and he doesn't have an LTC, but we'd need to see the related legal paperwork to sort that out. Either way, based on what we know, that case is a good candidate for LTC holder being charged for AW violation only.
 
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GSG

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Updated the OP with info on the 2004 case with an AR-15. That case is the most detailed AWB discussion I've seen or heard of in a Mass. court, and gets into weapon configuration and manufacturer statements.
 

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Updated thread to include the January 2003, 2006-2007 online threats incident and January 2010 cases, as well as the sentencing reports.

I found the January 2010 case stunning.
 

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Updated thread to include the January 2003, 2006-2007 online threats incident and January 2010 cases, as well as the sentencing reports.

I found the January 2010 case stunning.
What caused the cops to look at Tan in the 1/2010 incident?
 
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December 2004: CO with a personally owned AR-15

Came across this one in a civil service dispute from a Correctional Officer, Weinrebe v. DOC, CSC Case No. D1-06-347. Pages 18-25 discuss the criminal case involving his AR-15. He was an LTC holder, the gun was discovered during LTC revocation proceedings due to a report of domestic violence/209A.

http://www.mass.gov/Eoaf/docs/csc/decisions/discipline/weinrebe_joel_112907.pdf

The case says in part:
62. One of the items removed from Appellant’s home was a “Colt AR 15A3 .223 CAL
serial #LBD001907 labeled “Restricted Military/Government Law
Enforcement/Export Use only.
” (Exhibit 32; see also Testimony of Stanton, V. 2, p.
180)
then later:
67. Detective Stanton testified that after making these observations on the AR15, he
made phone calls and inquires to Colt Manufacturing Co., to the DOC, and
subsequently forwarded a criminal complaint regarding the weapon to the district
attorney’s office. (Testimony of Stanton, V. 2, pp. 140-141)
68. Detective Stanton testified that Colt Manufacturing Co. informed him that the AR15
that was confiscated from Appellant’s home left the factory in 1996. (Testimony of
Stanton, V. 2, p. 141) The Appellant also testified that the gun was manufactured in
1996. (Testimony of Appellant, V. 3, p. 47).
then later:
79. The Appellant testified that the weapon does not have a flash suppressor, bayonet lug, or folding or collapsible stock. (Exhibit 48)

80. On cross-examination when asked if his class A license permitted him to possess
guns that were banned and marked for military/government use only, the Appellant
first responded, “I don’t know of any.” Then when asked when his AR 15 was
stamped for law enforcement/military/government use only, the Appellant stated:
“Because a federal law that was probably passed in1994 and when I went to buy
magazines for my guns that were high capacity magazines, they were all stamped the
same thing and I had to show my driver’s license, my handgun license, my work I.D.,
and my badge to be able to buy those things.” (Testimony of Appellant, V. 3, p. 142)
Reading between the lines, it appears that the guy bought a marked AR-15 that had the evil features removed (meaning it was no longer an AW), and marked post ban mags, but was charged for the legal rifle and not for the illegal magazines. There's some interesting info there regarding how the weapon was ID'ed.
Was these charges brought prior to September 13th, 2004 when the assault weapons ban expired? I have a pdf of the letter issued by the ATF stating -

”There are no longer any marking requirements for semiautomatic assault weapons and large capacity ammunition feeding devices. Existing markings on firearms and magazines relating to law enforcement or government use may be disregarded.”

https://docs.google.com/open?id=0B4F3ZK93qxozMmExZDQzMWUtOWE3Ni00MGFmLTkwNzMtMGZlYmIzYzJlN2My

Does MA not follow this?
 

Rob Boudrie

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Does MA not follow this?
The existing markings are an indication that the magazine was, in fact, made after the federal ban originally went into place and thus are not "pre ban" mags under MGL.

The MA offense is not possession of mags with a LE marking, but possession of ones manufactured after the 1994 date.
 

Rob Boudrie

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I am talking about rifles marked Restricted/LEO.
Same general issue - the "Restricted/LEO" nomenclature started to appear on rifles after the 1994 ban, and was present on rifles that were not legal for sale under the federal ban - so, in general, a LE Only marking on a rifle tends to be indicative of both post 94 manufacture and the presence of features that make it an AW.
 

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I am talking about rifles marked Restricted/LEO.
As Rob said, the marking itself isn't the deciding facctor in a legal sense, what matters is the actual configuration of the rifle. But with that said, that case is a perfect example of the issue those markings create. The cops involved saw the markings, assumed the rifle was configured illegally and prosecuted. The lawyer got the case tossed on a technicality, but I'm inclined to believe Weinrebe when he said that the rifle wasn't configured illegally, simply because he was charged for the rifle, but not the mags, when in fact by his own admission it should have been the other way around. You jusst can't make this stuff up.

Same general issue - the "Restricted/LEO" nomenclature started to appear on rifles after the 1994 ban, and was present on rifles that were not legal for sale under the federal ban - so, in general, a LE Only marking on a rifle tends to be indicative of both post 94 manufacture and the presence of features that make it an AW.
Yup. Considering that the majority of the AWB prosecutions I've been able to find have been for Evil Black Rifles, I think having a stamp like that on a rifle is like tattooing "Arrest me" across your forehead, regardless of configuration.
 

Rob Boudrie

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Yup. Considering that the majority of the AWB prosecutions I've been able to find have been for Evil Black Rifles, I think having a stamp like that on a rifle is like tattooing "Arrest me" across your forehead, regardless of configuration.
I guess someone should start selling lowers engraved "CIVILIAN LEGAL VERSION, NOT FOR LAW ENFORCEMENT USE".
 
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December 2004: CO with a personally owned AR-15

Came across this one in a civil service dispute from a Correctional Officer, Weinrebe v. DOC, CSC Case No. D1-06-347. Pages 18-25 discuss the criminal case involving his AR-15. He was an LTC holder, the gun was discovered during LTC revocation proceedings due to a report of domestic violence/209A.

http://www.mass.gov/Eoaf/docs/csc/decisions/discipline/weinrebe_joel_112907.pdf...

Reading between the lines, it appears that the guy bought a marked AR-15 that had the evil features removed (meaning it was no longer an AW), and marked post ban mags, but was charged for the legal rifle and not for the illegal magazines. There's some interesting info there regarding how the weapon was ID'ed.
Weinrebe was one of those cases where the unpublished backstory puts things into perspective. Let's just say his activities with some people who consider themselves part of the "1%" both on and off duty led to his undoing.

It certainly doesn't change what the case stands for as a matter of law, but it's worth noting the process to get rid of him using the AWB was kinda like getting Al Capone for tax evasion.
 
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I learned a lot from this thread and only now, 5 minutes ago, did I realize how OLD it is. Does anyone have any udates? How do you guys keep it all straight? I wish there were a place to go look up every law in every state so that I'd never have to worry about breaking any.

BF and I are fixin' to move back sought again soon. Can't decide on where yet, so the more law we know, the better. Thanks
 
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I learned a lot from this thread and only now, 5 minutes ago, did I realize how OLD it is. Does anyone have any udates? How do you guys keep it all straight? I wish there were a place to go look up every law in every state so that I'd never have to worry about breaking any.

BF and I are fixin' to move back sought again soon. Can't decide on where yet, so the more law we know, the better. Thanks
Try these sites

http://www.nraila.org/gun-laws/state-laws.aspx (click on state name for details)

http://opencarry.org/maps.html
 

drgrant

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I learned a lot from this thread and only now, 5 minutes ago, did I realize how OLD it is. Does anyone have any udates? How do you guys keep it all straight? I wish there were a place to go look up every law in every state so that I'd never have to worry about breaking any.
I doubt there are any updates, as these cases are patently rare overall. GSG is our resident "MA legal lore sherlock holmes" kind of guy... Nominally whenever anything gun related comes up (for example, a non criminal charged with unsafe storage, etc. ) someone posts about it on NES.

-Mike
 

drgrant

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Weinrebe was one of those cases where the unpublished backstory puts things into perspective. Let's just say his activities with some people who consider themselves part of the "1%" both on and off duty led to his undoing.

It certainly doesn't change what the case stands for as a matter of law, but it's worth noting the process to get rid of him using the AWB was kinda like getting Al Capone for tax evasion.
If this is the case, then it potentially does have relevancy. For example, if there were no political overtones here, what are the odds that the DA would not have gone full court press on the guy over the gun? It would appear that some of these prosecutions all hinge on the "payout" they get from a conviction.

Of course the idiocy in this state knows no bounds.... we have Linda Hamilton's case (she was convicted, and eventually committed suicide as the incident basically destroyed her life, all because she decided to show a gun to a truck driver trying to run her off the road) which was patently absurd by pretty much any measure, and then the attempted prosecution of Fleury after the Westfield MG tragedy. Then on top of that we have "MTBS guy" where the state was trying to string him up and like 99% of the laundry list of charges got dropped. The DAs' behavior in this state is best described as "spastic". Even if one is within the law, it's pretty clear to me that given the wrong set of circumstances/context, any one of us could be placed at legal peril in MA courts. Regardless of what you own the only way you can be legally safe in this state is to try to fly low and avoid the radar at all costs. [thinking]

ETA: I realize I am kind of derailing this thread, but the courts idoicy in this state is pretty complimentary to the AWB.

Given that legally false EOPS letter that has been pushed around, I am betting nearly anything an anti gun PD might use that as a justification for trying to seek charges against someone with a "clean" rifle. [thinking]

-Mike
 
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CMEBoston

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If this is the case, then it potentially does have relevancy. For example, if there were no political overtones here, what are the odds that the DA would not have gone full court press on the guy over the gun? It would appear that some of these prosecutions all hinge on the "payout" they get from a conviction.

Of course the idiocy in this state knows no bounds.... we have Linda Hamilton's case (she was convicted, and eventually committed suicide as the incident basically destroyed her life, all because she decided to show a gun to a truck driver trying to run her off the road) which was patently absurd by pretty much any measure, and then the attempted prosecution of Fleury after the Westfield MG tragedy. Then on top of that we have "MTBS guy" where the state was trying to string him up and like 99% of the laundry list of charges got dropped. The DAs' behavior in this state is best described as "spastic". Even if one is within the law, it's pretty clear to me that given the wrong set of circumstances/context, any one of us could be placed at legal peril in MA courts. Regardless of what you own the only way you can be legally safe in this state is to try to fly low and avoid the radar at all costs. [thinking]

ETA: I realize I am kind of derailing this thread, but the courts idoicy in this state is pretty complimentary to the AWB.

Given that legally false EOPS letter that has been pushed around, I am betting nearly anything an anti gun PD might use that as a justification for trying to seek charges against someone with a "clean" rifle. [thinking]

-Mike
Bingo! and id do it if i lived in a free state too!
 
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