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Tag: Guns

TSA Finds Record 73 Firearms in Carry-On Luggage in 1 Week at Nation’s Airports

body images airportBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The TSA reported that a record 73 firearms were found in carry-on luggage last week, setting a 73-year-old record for most guns found in such a short period.

Newsy reports that most of the guns were loaded, and 27 had a round in the chamber.  

What’s unclear is how many guns made it onto the plane without security noticing. A report last year from that the TSA failed to find an alarming number of prohibited items.

At the time, the TSA had a 95% failure rate of identifying smuggled mock weapons and explosives.

People caught with a firearm in a carry-on face arrest and fines between $1,500 and $7,500.

Other Stories of Interest

Congressman Urges Passage of ATF Enforcement Act to End Gun Hypocrisy

gunsBy Rep. Donald S. Beyer Jr.
for Washington Post

Those who oppose gun safety legislation often contend that the president and Congress should enforce existing gun laws before considering any new ones. National Rifle Association President Wayne LaPierre has said that under current federal law, President Obama “could take every felon with a gun, drug dealer with a gun, and criminal gang banger with a gun off the streets tomorrow and lock ’em up for five years or more”; House Judiciary Committee Chairman Bob Goodlatte (R-Va.), who holds great power over whether gun legislation sees the light of day, has said that “the federal government is not doing the job they should be doing in enforcing our current gun laws.”

We should call their bluff. The truth is that Congress routinely blocks the power of the federal agency responsible for overseeing and investigating firearms sales: the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives (ATF). The ATF is unable to carry out its mission because of the multiple obstacles placed in its path. For example, a 2004 budget amendment blocked the agency from providing data on the tracing of guns used in crimes for any state license revocation action or civil lawsuit. Gun-trace data are critically important for sourcing illegally trafficked firearms and identifying corrupt gun dealers. Another amendment that year banned any requirement that gun dealers keep a physical inventory of their wares. In 2012, Congress said that the ATF couldn’t deny applications to import any shotgun simply because it lacked a sporting purpose. The list goes on.

So what if we didn’t pass new gun safety laws, but instead simply returned to the ATF the authority and autonomy to fully perform its duties? What if this key agency were enabled “to protect communities from violent criminals . . . the illegal use and trafficking of firearms . . . [and] acts of terrorism,” as its mission statement reads, without interference?

Tuesday I will introduce the ATF Enforcement Act, which would restore the agency’s ability to enforce existing gun laws by removing legislative limitations on its operations, enforcement and day-to-day functions. My bill would also allow the person picked to be ATF director to bypass the Senate confirmation process by moving the appointment power to the attorney general. For years, congressional allies of the gun lobby have blocked nominees by both Democratic and Republican presidents. Only one nominee has been confirmed since the position was made subject to Senate approval in 2006.

Border Patrol Reports Less Frequent Use of Force, But Accuracy of Data Questioned

Border PatrolBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Border Parol agents and custom officers reported fewer incidents of resorting to force this year, saying they used firearms just seven times in the first five month of the fiscal year.

But the Los Angele Times reports that the figures released Thursday omitted at least one fatal shooting in El Paso. Because of that, some civil rights advocates questioned the accuracy of the data.

“It speaks to a lack of confidence in the statistics themselves. I don’t think there are that many firearm incidents that you can’t have a tabulation of what happened,” said Chris Rickerd, policy counsel with the American Civil Liberties Union in Washington, adding that until more detailed numbers are released, “it’s very hard to have faith in these statistics.”

Last fiscal year, the agency reported using firearms 28 times, compared to 29 times the year before.

The agency released the data by geographic sector for the first time.

Secret Service: No Guns Will Be Allowed inside Republican National Convention

GOP elephantBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The Secret Service plans to stop any plans to allow guns at the Republican National Convention in Cleveland, 12News reports. 

The Secret Service made its position clear after a petition with 45,000 signatures demanded that Quicken Loans Arena, end its ban on possessing firearms.

“This is a direct affront to the Second Amendment and puts all attendees at risk,” the petition states.

The Secret Service responded that only law enforcement will be permitted to posses guns inside the event.

“Individuals determined to be carrying firearms will not be allowed past a predetermined outer perimeter checkpoint, regardless of whether they possess a ticket to the event,” Secret Service spokesman Robert Hoback told the Hill. 

GOP frontrunner said he plan to read the petition before making a position on the ban.

“I want to see what it says. I want to read the fine print,” said Trump, who reiterated that he is “a very, very strong person for Second Amendment.”

Other Stories of Interest

FBI, Local Officials Briefly Detain 17 Men of Middle Eastern Descent After 100+ Gunshots Reported

Apple ValleyBy Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Law enforcement briefly detained 17 men of Middle Eastern descent in a remote part of Apple Valley, Calif., after campers said they heard chanting and hundreds of gunshots Sunday morning.

The FBI and San Bernardino County sheriff’s deputies responded and interviewed the men, but no charges were filed and the shooters were released.

San Bernardino County sheriff’s spokeswoman Jodi Mille said there was no evidence the men committed a crime or had outstanding warrants.

“None of the persons interviewed yesterday were identified as terrorists,” she said.

Law enforcement officials found several handguns, a shotgun and rifle.

“A records check of the subjects, their weapons, and their vehicles was completed,” the statement said. “The records check revealed none of the subjects had a criminal history or outstanding warrants, the weapons were registered with the Department of Justice except for the rifle, and the vehicles were also registered.”

Justice Department: Rifle Recovered from ‘El Chapo’ Hideout Tied to Fast & Furious

Joaquin_Guzman-Loera

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

The failed gun-walking operation known as Fast and Furious has been linked to a .50-caliber rifle found at the hideout of drug lord Joaquin “El Chapo” Guzman.

The Justice Department shared the information in a letter to Congress, the Associated Press reports. 

The gun was among 19 firearms that Mexican authorities found at the hideout.

The botched sting operation allowed gun-runners to purchase weapons so that authorities could track them to drug smuggling rings.

The Justice Department said the gun was purchased in July 2010.

Nearly 900 firearms bought during the operation have been recovered.

“ATF and the department deeply regret that firearms associated with Operation Fast and Furious have been used by criminals in the commission of violent crimes, particularly crimes resulting in the deaths of civilians and law enforcement officials,” Assistant Attorney General Peter Kadzik, head of the Justice Department’s legislative affairs office, wrote in a March 15 letter.

TSA Stops Woman With Bullet-Lined Shoes at Baltimore Airport

Bullet-lined shoes discovered at an airport checkpoint. Photo by TSA.

Bullet-lined shoes discovered at an airport checkpoint. Photo by TSA.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

A woman trying to board a flight was stopped when security found bullet-lined platform shoes with revolvers for heels.

The incident happened at Baltimore-Washington International Airport on Monday, when an unidentified passenger was stopped by the TSA for having the shoes and a bracelet lined with bullets, Time reports. 

“Shoes and bracelets that are less than ideal to wear or bring to a @TSA checkpoint. These delayed a traveler at BWI,” the agency’s spokeswoman Lisa Farbstein posted on Twitter Monday.

The platform shoes were in the traveler’s carry-on bag.

Instead of abandoning her flight, the woman abandoned the shoe and bracelet.

Farbstein reminded travelers, “Realistic replica firearms and ammunition are not permitted past TSA checkpoints.”

In 2015, the TSA found an average of seven firearms a day at airport checkpoints.

Other Stories of Interest

U.S. House Committee Demands Answers After Homeland Security Lost 165 Firearms in 3 Years

U.S. Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah.

U.S. Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah.

By Steve Neavling
ticklethewire.com

Congressional leaders are demanding answers from Homeland Security following the discovery that it lost 165 firearms in three years.

Rep. Jason Chaffetz, chairman of the U.S. House Committee on Oversight and Government Reform, requested Homeland Security inventory records and policies, the Daily Caller reports. 

The discovery of lost firearms, badges and cellphones was made by the news site, Compete Colorado.

The loss of the firearms “shows that the department is consistently unable to safeguard sensitive property,” the congressmen wrote.

“The fact that hundreds of badges and cell phones are missing gives rise to a variety of different security threat possibilities,” the letter said. “It is particularly troubling, however, that the department cannot account for its entire inventory of firearms.”

Between 2006 and 2008, Homeland Security lost 289 firearms, according to the DHS Office of Inspector General.