A New Brady Blog Feature

Looks like they are trying to post more in hopes of attracting more traffic.  I was wondering why I suddenly had three new posts in Bloglines, which is unusual for them.  Either way, they point out that the guy who got into a gunfight in Seattle, and has a CHL from the State of Washington, never should have had one.  Well, the fact that get got into a scuffle with someone and shot him ought to be an indication he wasn’t the type of person who ought to be armed.  Regardless, the fact that he was addicted to a controlled substance means he wasn’t eligible to own a firearm, let alone carry one.  CeaseFire Washington had this to say:

Kristen Comer, executive director of Washington Ceasefire, a gun-control advocacy group, said the situation underscores problems with Washington state’s concealed-weapon law.

“The background checks done in Washington state are very primitive,” she said. “We didn’t have background checks before 1994.”

Right now there are two background checks, Comer said.

The state check is the equivalent of law enforcement asking each other if “John Doe is on your list,” Comer said. “And the federal system and the state system don’t talk to each other much, as far as mental health goes.”

The problem is, there is no more thorough background check that would have likely turned up these records, since it’s not clear they exist.  Was there ever a previous adjudication or commitment?  Were the authorities ever involved in his addiction treatment?  No doubt this will be used as an example of why we need ever deeper probing of carry license applicants, but it’s not clear it would have made a difference in this case.

8 thoughts on “A New Brady Blog Feature”

  1. …Or to paraphrase Slick Willie, “This law won’t work, but it’s an important first step toward grabbing the rights that we’re trying to take in the future.”
    If this guy was on methadone at 18, I’d guess he has a pretty serious problem, and has had more than one brush with the law. And the article also stated he “had a history of anxiety and mental illness.”
    Also, see the next paragraph: “the permit asks applicants whether they have spent 14 days or longer in a mental-health facility (with his ‘history’, I’m guessing yes) and requires them to sign a waiver allowing police to look at mental-health records.” It seems obvious that this wasn’t done, or at LEAST they’d have known he was in a methadone-treatment program for the last 4 years. Whether the federal and state systems ‘talk to each other much’ or not, either of them has the power to get him rejected, right?

  2. Actually, since Washington’s an open carry state, what’s required for a CPL isn’t much of an issue, since you don’t need one to be out in public armed. What I’d like to know is whether or not the Folklife Festival is permitted as a “Music Festival” under Washington law, which would bring the restrictions of RCW 70.108.150 into play by making it illegal for anyone other than law enforcement to carry. Clearly this guy should never have been allowed to posses his Glock, but I strongly suspect it would have been illegal for anyone to be armed there. None of the media coverage I’ve seen has addressed the point.

  3. I’m betting the State Troopers are wondering how this guy got his permit and kept it as well. I heard he has a history of violence, but all at the misdemeanor level. I’m not sure if that means he just got into bar fights, or if he has managed to plead some felony charges down to misdemeanors. I’m also curious as to why his drug habits and rehab were missed.

  4. And in any other context, just how do you think these people would react to “Let’s let the police have access to all your medical records”?

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