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Thread: Richmond City Council officially anti-gun

  1. #1
    Regular Member Repeater's Avatar
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    Richmond City Council officially anti-gun

    Last night, Councilman Samuels followed through on his intent to ban any discharge of a firearm anywhere within city limits, even when on your own private property. The vote was unanimous:

    Ordinance no: 2012-55-39. Vote: 9-0.

    Sec. 66-342. - Willfully discharging firearms in public places.

    If any person willfully discharges or causes to be discharged any firearm in any street in the city or in any place of public business or place of public gathering anywhere within the city limits, such person shall be guilty of a class 1 misdemeanor. However, this section shall not apply to the discharge of firearms (i) by any law enforcement officer in the performance of official duties nor to , (ii) by any other person whose willful act is otherwise justifiable or excusable at law in the protection of such person's life or property or is otherwise specifically authorized by law, ...[blah blah blah].

    (Code 1993, 20-147)

    Cross References: Streets, sidewalks and public ways, ch. 90.

    State Law References: Similar provisions, Code of Virginia, 18.2-280.
    Note in particular the willful deletion of "or property" which is contrary to the Code of Virginia, 18.2-280 D.

    Evidently, the Rule of Law and Dillon's Rule don't matter.
    Last edited by Repeater; 04-24-2012 at 02:18 PM.

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    What about indoor shooting ranges? Are there currently any within the city limits of Richmond?

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    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
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    Richmond City Council officially anti-gun! Please say it isn't so, I had such high hopes for them.

    Ask any member of the city council who Dillon is and I bet you are met with a blank stare. I am sure that since it is their city, they'll just say it's their law. They continue to show their disdain for the rule of law.


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    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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    Quote Originally Posted by VApatriot View Post
    What about indoor shooting ranges? Are there currently any within the city limits of Richmond?
    This...

    Hah hah.

    Because the language of the ordinance does not respect private property, the term "within" would apply on and within your private property, so discharge of a weapon inside a building, including a range, would be a crime.

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    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Repeater View Post
    This...

    Hah hah.

    Because the language of the ordinance does not respect private property, the term "within" would apply on and within your private property, so discharge of a weapon inside a building, including a range, would be a crime.
    That This is more than funny.

    Wonder if they want to be a test case?
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training. Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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    Regular Member TFred's Avatar
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    According to Google, the shooting range is outside the city limits.

    TFred

    ETA: Can't figure out how to get a meaningful link, but go here:

    http://virginia.hometownlocator.com/maps/

    Select Henrico in the pull-down box in the upper right hand corner, then type in the address of the range:

    6020 West Broad Street, Richmond, VA

    in the search box, and you will see that it's in the county.
    Last edited by TFred; 04-24-2012 at 03:39 PM.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Repeater View Post
    This...

    Hah hah.

    Because the language of the ordinance does not respect private property, the term "within" would apply on and within your private property, so discharge of a weapon inside a building, including a range, would be a crime.
    mailing address may be richmond but physical city limits are several blocks east near broad and staples mill.

  8. #8
    Regular Member Repeater's Avatar
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    Well, you're right

    Quote Originally Posted by TFred View Post
    According to Google, the shooting range is outside the city limits.

    TFred

    ETA: Can't figure out how to get a meaningful link, but go here:

    http://virginia.hometownlocator.com/maps/

    Select Henrico in the pull-down box in the upper right hand corner, then type in the address of the range:

    6020 West Broad Street, Richmond, VA

    in the search box, and you will see that it's in the county.
    I should have confirmed with this dandy mapper:

    http://map.richmondgov.com/parcel/

    The city does have some nifty GIS tools.

  9. #9
    Regular Member TFred's Avatar
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    The whole thing does beg the question, did they even bother to check on whether there are any businesses that would be hurt by this?

    TFred

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    Quote Originally Posted by TFred View Post
    The whole thing does beg the question, did they even bother to check on whether there are any businesses that would be hurt by this?

    TFred
    Good question. It appears the final vote is scheduled on May 29, 2012.

    A rationale for this appears in today's Times-Dispatch:
    Ban on discharging guns approved

    After a discussion that saw some contentious comments from some residents who thought the council was trying to limit gun rights, a measure passed unanimously that would ban most discharges of firearms within the city limits.

    The ordinance by 2nd District Councilman Charles R. Samuels changed the language of the city code to ban discharging firearms with the exception of law enforcement officers in the performance of official duties; individuals acting lawfully "in the protection of such person's life"; military or law enforcement as part of authorized training, a funeral or a non-holiday or holiday salute; or when using blank ammunition for a theatrical performance or sporting event. It was especially intended to ban discharges on private property, such as people shooting into the air on holidays.

    After several angry comments from residents, Samuels stressed the law would not limit the right of gun owners to defend themselves.

    "You just have to believe in a few things, that randomly shooting your gun in the air is a bad idea, and gravity," said Councilman Chris Hilbert of the 3rd District. "It's dangerous and reckless."
    Of course, the actual language would do a whole lot more than discharging a firearm into the air. But no worries: Michael Herring reviewed the draft and approved it, so it must be okay:

    Richmond proposal would restrict firing guns in city
    Samuels said the request to tighten the language came from Richmond police and the commonwealth's attorney's office. Though a state statute prohibits reckless handling of firearms, the new ordinance would ensure police have an additional tool to charge offenders, Samuels said.

    "It closes a loophole in the way the Richmond ordinance is written," he said.

    Richmond Commonwealth's Attorney Michael Herring said he has reviewed a draft of the amended ordinance and agrees with the wording.

    "The state code did not prohibit discharges not aimed at people or buildings on private property," Herring wrote in an email. "The revised version is consistent with ordinances of neighboring jurisdictions and should reduce the number of open-air discharges during holidays or on other, less-predictable, occasions. Random gunfire is dangerous, period. And we all know that accidents happen. Accidents with guns, however, are often tragic."
    Gee, swell.

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    "It was especially intended to ban discharges on private property, such as people shooting into the air on holidays."
    What was wrong with just enforcing this code?

    18.2-56.1. Reckless handling of firearms; reckless handling while hunting.

    A. It shall be unlawful for any person to handle recklessly any firearm so as to endanger the life, limb or property of any person. Any person violating this section shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor.
    Or how about this one?

    18.2-280. Willfully discharging firearms in public places.

    A. If any person willfully discharges or causes to be discharged any firearm in any street in a city or town, or in any place of public business or place of public gathering, and such conduct results in bodily injury to another person, he shall be guilty of a Class 6 felony. If such conduct does not result in bodily injury to another person, he shall be guilty of a Class 1 misdemeanor.

    B. If any person willfully discharges or causes to be discharged any firearm upon the buildings and grounds of any public, private or religious elementary, middle or high school, he shall be guilty of a Class 4 felony, unless he is engaged in a program or curriculum sponsored by or conducted with permission of a public, private or religious school.

    C. If any person willfully discharges or causes to be discharged any firearm upon any public property within 1,000 feet of the property line of any public, private or religious elementary, middle or high school property he shall be guilty of a Class 4 felony, unless he is engaged in lawful hunting.

    D. This section shall not apply to any law-enforcement officer in the performance of his official duties nor to any other person whose said willful act is otherwise justifiable or excusable at law in the protection of his life or property, or is otherwise specifically authorized by law.

    E. Nothing in this statute shall preclude the Commonwealth from electing to prosecute under any other applicable provision of law instead of this section."
    "After several angry comments from residents, Samuels stressed the law would not limit the right of gun owners to defend themselves.
    Clear BS on that one. Why did they strike "or property" from the ordinance?

  12. #12
    Campaign Veteran skidmark's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grapeshot View Post
    .... Ask any member of the city council who Dillon is and I bet you are met with a blank stare.
    I'll take that bet, at any odds you want to give.

    I'm betting that they will all say Dillon was the marshal of Dodge City in the TV show "Gunsmoke".

    stay safe.
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    Because stupidity isn't a race, and everybody can win.

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    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
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    Originally Posted by Grapeshot

    .... Ask any member of the city council who Dillon is and I bet you are met with a blank stare.
    Quote Originally Posted by skidmark View Post
    I'll take that bet, at any odds you want to give.

    I'm betting that they will all say Dillon was the marshal of Dodge City in the TV show "Gunsmoke".

    stay safe.
    Thank you Mr. Frack
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training. Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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    Regular Member TFred's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by VApatriot View Post
    Why did they strike "or property" from the ordinance?
    It is my understanding that Virginia does not allow the use of deadly force in the protection of property.

    TFred

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    Accomplished Advocate peter nap's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TFred View Post
    It is my understanding that Virginia does not allow the use of deadly force in the protection of property.

    TFred
    It doesn't allow the use of deadly force against humans TFred.

    Remember, this is a "Thou shall not fire your gun" ordnance and there are many instances, even in Cities, where animals commit depredations against property and can be legally killed.

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    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TFred View Post
    It is my understanding that Virginia does not allow the use of deadly force in the protection of property.

    TFred
    In Montgomery v. Commonwealth, 98 Va. 840, 842-43, 36 S.E. 371, 372 (1900), we said: The law is clearly stated by a learned judge in State v. Morgan, 3 Ired. 186, 38 Am. Dec. 714, as follows: "When it is said that a man may rightfully use as much force as is necessary for the protection of his person and property, it should be recollected that this rule is subject to this most important modification, that he shall not, except in extreme cases, endanger human life or do great bodily harm. It is not every right of person, and still less of property, that can lawfully be asserted, or every wrong that may rightfully be redressed by extreme remedies.
    http://www.virginia1774.org/Page5.html
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training. Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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    Quote Originally Posted by VApatriot View Post
    What about indoor shooting ranges? Are there currently any within the city limits of Richmond?
    Just the police academy unless the feds have a super secret range.

    Fun fact there was a shooting range under the Landmark Theatre. It's dusty and dirty, but last I saw the shooting lanes were still there.
    "These are the shock troops (opencarry.org) of the gun lobby. And, they are not going away."
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    Moderator / Administrator Grapeshot's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by T Dubya View Post
    --snip--

    Fun fact there was a shooting range under the Landmark Theatre. It's dusty and dirty, but last I saw the shooting lanes were still there.
    I knew there was a swimming pool there, but never have heard of a range - do tell more.
    You will not rise to the occasion; you will fall back on your level of training. Archilochus, 650 BC

    Old and treacherous will beat young and skilled every time. Yata hey.

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    Shooting practice

    God forbid Richmond allows all these pistol toten gun nuts to get some practice in with their firearms. Before you know it, we'll be shooting as poorly as LEOs.
    "Yes, I am carrying a loaded firearm. Why aren't you? "

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    Quote Originally Posted by TFred View Post
    It is my understanding that Virginia does not allow the use of deadly force in the protection of property.

    TFred
    Well, it does here:
    D. This section shall not apply to any law-enforcement officer in the performance of his official duties nor to any other person whose said willful act is otherwise justifiable or excusable at law in the protection of his life or property, or is otherwise specifically authorized by law.

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    Regular Member TFred's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by TFred View Post
    It is my understanding that Virginia does not allow the use of deadly force in the protection of property.

    TFred
    From the thread VCDL's LOOK AT THE CASTLE DOCTRINE FOR VIRGINIA, which quoted a VCDL VA-ALERT mailing.

    Fourth paragraph down in first post of linked thread:

    "Virginia is a stand-your-ground state. But not just in your "castle," but EVERYWHERE you might be. As long as you are not "part of the problem," you can stand your ground and defend yourself. If you end up killing your assailant, it is considered a "justifiable homicide." If you are part of the problem, say you yelled an expletive at someone who cut you off in traffic, and you are attacked, then you must retreat as far as you can, indicate you have given up the fight, and only if the assailant keeps up the attack, may you defend yourself. In that case if the assailant dies, it is considered an "excusable homicide." Also, you can only use deadly force to protect yourself or others when you reasonably fear death OR grievous bodily injury. You CANNOT use deadly force to protect property or against a trespasser."

    Not saying if VCDL is right or wrong, but that is my cite.

    TFred

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    Campaign Veteran skidmark's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Grapeshot View Post
    I knew there was a swimming pool there, but never have heard of a range - do tell more.
    RPD had their range down there. Not sure when it was abandoned, but then my memory is not as good as it used to be.

    But T-Dub is showing his lack of "real Richmonder"-ness by calling it Landmark Theater. Everybody knows it is The Mosque.

    stay safe.
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    Because stupidity isn't a race, and everybody can win.

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    I wouldn't be surprised to see them try to find a way to classify air powered 'weapons' as firearms next. One can never trust a politician at any level and should never allow them to act without proper supervision.

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    Accomplished Advocate peter nap's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Toad View Post
    I wouldn't be surprised to see them try to find a way to classify air powered 'weapons' as firearms next. One can never trust a politician at any level and should never allow them to act without proper supervision.
    They were until recently. Henrico and Richmond both treated the discharge of air guns the same as firearms and everyone treated airguns as firearms with regard to concealing.

    The GA fixed the concealment part a few years ago and the discharge of...session before last.

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    The VCDL quote is close. The operative phrase used by the courts is, "mere property". The habitation is a different class of "property" which derives its special status precisely because people live there. So there was a guy who killed a trespasser in his cornfield with a scythe (if I recall correctly), who was found guilty of murder because the cornfield was "mere property". Nobody lives there, it's not a home or curtilage thereof. Similarly, the guy who brandished a firearm at a "repo-man" who was in the process of taking the man's car out of the driveway was also guilty, as he was attempting to use deadly force to protect his interest in his car or its contents. Neither of those cases is applicable if you blow away Badguy The Burglar who's in the process of stealing the television out of your living room at two o'clock a.m.; that's both stopping a serious felony in progress (burglary) as well as defense of habitation. (Make sure it's not the Alzheimer's patient from across the street who's just trying to figure out how to "tune" the digital tv so he can see his "stories".)

    All of these principles have different names and different kinds of analysis, and they all get blurred together as people think in terms of the shooting and not the reason for the shooting. "Stand your ground", or as we've always said in Virginia, "the true-man doctrine", does apply everywhere, but not to everybody, and not to every situation. It always applies in the home ("defense of habitation rule") and it does apply to innocent defenders or defenders of innocent others ("perfect self defense rule"), and I think it would always apply when stopping a serious felony in progress, though I don't think there's ever been a case on that issue. As stated, it does not apply when the person being defended (whether self or other) is "not innocent". If you had a hand in starting the ruckus, no matter how trivially, the "imperfect self defense rule" is what you get, which means you have to "retreat to the wall" before you're entitled to turn and become the aggressor.

    Quote Originally Posted by TFred View Post
    From the thread VCDL's LOOK AT THE CASTLE DOCTRINE FOR VIRGINIA, which quoted a VCDL VA-ALERT mailing.

    Fourth paragraph down in first post of linked thread:

    "Virginia is a stand-your-ground state. But not just in your "castle," but EVERYWHERE you might be. As long as you are not "part of the problem," you can stand your ground and defend yourself. If you end up killing your assailant, it is considered a "justifiable homicide." If you are part of the problem, say you yelled an expletive at someone who cut you off in traffic, and you are attacked, then you must retreat as far as you can, indicate you have given up the fight, and only if the assailant keeps up the attack, may you defend yourself. In that case if the assailant dies, it is considered an "excusable homicide." Also, you can only use deadly force to protect yourself or others when you reasonably fear death OR grievous bodily injury. You CANNOT use deadly force to protect property or against a trespasser."

    Not saying if VCDL is right or wrong, but that is my cite.

    TFred
    In the language quoted, note that not all defense of property is "excusable or justifiable". Some is, some ain't.

    Quote Originally Posted by Repeater View Post
    Well, it does here "D. This section shall not apply to any law-enforcement officer in the performance of his official duties nor to any other person whose said willful act is otherwise justifiable or excusable at law in the protection of his life or property, or is otherwise specifically authorized by law."
    Last edited by user; 04-27-2012 at 06:41 PM.
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