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Thread: Tea Party Leader Shocked by Arrest on Gun Charges at LaGuardia Airport

  1. #1
    Regular Member rscottie's Avatar
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    Tea Party Leader Shocked by Arrest on Gun Charges at LaGuardia Airport

    Mark Meckler, co-founder of Tea Party Patriots, one of the largest and most prominent tea-party groups, was arrested today at New York City's LaGuardia Airport on a gun charge – despite showing police his pistol permit and explaining that the weapon is registered in California.

    "Mark Meckler, an attorney and national coordinator for Tea Party Patriots, who holds a concealed-carry permit from the state of California, today was charged with a firearms violation at LaGuardia Airport in New York City," said Brian Stapleton, Meckler's lawyer, in a statement.

    "While in temporary transit through the state of New York in possession of an unloaded, lawful firearm that was locked in a (Transportation Security Administration)-approved safe, he legally declared his possession of the firearm in his checked baggage at the ticket counter as required by law and in a manner approved by TSA and the airline, yet was arrested by port authority for said possession," Stapleton said.

    Complete Story Here: http://www.wnd.com/index.php?fa=PAGE.view&pageId=377885

    How can they arrest him if the gun was locked in an approved case for transport and he was in transit?

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    judging from the time of arrest I'm thinking it was a layover and he took possession of his baggage and exited the airport with it between flights. this has happened before in Ny and, I think, NJ.

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    Regular Member 230therapy's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by carracer View Post
    judging from the time of arrest I'm thinking it was a layover and he took possession of his baggage and exited the airport with it between flights. this has happened before in Ny and, I think, NJ.
    There is a New York lawyer who has already gone through this several times.

    The fact that he can even be arrested for this is ridiculous.
    Does anyone here actually believe that the Founders were sitting around in John Adams' tavern UNARMED because they believed a bar should be a gun free zone?

  4. #4
    Campaign Veteran Schlitz's Avatar
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    I serve in the military to ultimately protect the constitution of the united states.... since it is being destroyed by my own government sometimes I can't help but wonder what the point of my service is.
    “The claim and exercise of a constitutional right cannot be converted into a crime.”
    [Miller vs. U.S., 230 F. Supp. 486, 489 (1956)]
    “There can be no sanction or penalty imposed upon one because of his exercise of constitutional rights.”
    [Sherar vs. Cullen, 481 F2d. 946 (1973)]

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    despite showing police his pistol permit...
    Irrelevant to New York law.


    ...and explaining that the weapon is registered in California.
    Irrelevant to New York law.


    "While in temporary transit through the state of New York in possession of an unloaded, lawful firearm..."
    From where, to where? Was he in New York solely to catch a plane while travelling from one place where he may legally possess his pistol, to another place where he may legally possess it? If not, FOPA '86 will not help him at all.

    Even if he was legal under federal law, NYC doesn't care (as he has already discovered).

    I'm amazed that anyone who has gone to the time and trouble of getting a license from a hard-to-get state like California, could be so ignorant of gun laws as to think California law would save him in New York.

  6. #6
    Campaign Veteran skidmark's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by carracer View Post
    judging from the time of arrest I'm thinking it was a layover and he took possession of his baggage and exited the airport with it between flights. this has happened before in Ny and, I think, NJ.
    Folks that do not aquaint themselves with the provisions of FOPA and follow them scroupulously get little sympathy from me - especially when transiting NY/NYC and NJ. There is enough publicly available information about how those jurisdictions deal with firearms to make folks consider such safeguards as checjing baggage through to their final destination regardless of layovers/stops, or shipping their firearms to themself at their final destination to avoid even emergency flight stops in hostile territory.

    The existence of the concealed permit has nothing to do with FOPA or his "legal right" to posses a firearm in NY or NYC, let alone in California or where he was headed to. The significant requirements are that he could legally posses it where he started from and where he was heading to, and that the transit of the locality where it was not legal to posses be as direct as possible (stops for food, bathroom breaks OK, stops to sleep not OK, taking possession of the baggage while in NY without a NY possession permit not OK).

    Taking possession of the baggage containing the firearm even without exiting the sterile area of the airport still violates NY law, where you must have a permit to posses firearms. That fact ought to be known by now, but apparently is not known well enough by enough folks. It may suck, and it may make every true 2A supported see red, but that is and continues to be the law - especially in NY (and NJ).

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

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    Regular Member Badger Johnson's Avatar
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    I think it's mis-direction to cite this situation as a 'well, if a lawyer can't get it right, what chance do I have as an ordinary Joe, trying to go to my destination...', or 'look how they trample our rights'.

    It's tricky but it's spelled out well enough that if this lawyer had bothered to check he'd have been able to foresee this. So no sympathy from me, either.
    A gun in a holster is better than one drawn and dispensing bullets. Concealed forces the latter. - ixtow

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  8. #8
    Herr Heckler Koch
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    It is a hard lesson and a tough way to learn, as is said in Wisconsin, "You may beat the rap, but you can't beat the ride!" Perhaps this will be the match that lights the fire under the legal community and conservative politicians.

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    Regular Member paramedic70002's Avatar
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    Set up for a test case?
    "Each worker carried his sword strapped to his side." Nehemiah 4:18

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    Regular Member hammer6's Avatar
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    Tea Party leader arrested with gun at NY airport

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    Regular Member rscottie's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by paramedic70002 View Post
    Set up for a test case?
    As there seems to be no other recourse nowadays to get a bad law changed other than getting charged and convicted for violating it and then appealing it, we can only hope that this Lawyer has the wherewithal to pursue this to the end.

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    Herr Heckler Koch
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    Campaign Veteran skidmark's Avatar
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    This is being talked about all over the gun boards, as well as the travel boards and elsewhere.

    That being said, I'm still trying to figure out how this doofus thought he could do what it seems he did, given the amazingly large body of case law and publicity that says NY State can bust you for possessing a firearm in NY without a possession permit, when you move baggage between airlines. I know I'm committing an error here, but isn't this well-enough known to make someone avoid the possibility of getting wrapped up like he did?

    I'm also trying to find out if this guy made an overnight stop, although taking the firearm-containing baggage out of the sterile area or not of the airport has nothing to do with how NY looks at FOPA vs its firearms possession laws. Further, just to whine about it, the CCW permit has nothing to do with FOPA or NY possession laws - bringing it up is a red herring.

    Understand that I am by no means supporting NY State's laws or their legal position. I'm merely noting that they have not yet lost a case when someone has challenged them, which says to me that one needs to do things a bit differently when transiting NY.

    Check your baggage directly through to your destination, and let the airlines handle it. But since it involves baggage with a firearm they are most likely going to be reluctant to do that if it means transporting your baggage between carriers.

    Or ship your firearm(s) to yourself at your destination. Yes, it adds expense to your trip. But it avoids the expense of legal fees and loss of your 2A and other rights.

    Or route your trip around NY/NJ. Yes, it can add time and costs, but it avoids the potential hazards. It also gives you the opportunity to see the country from a perspective other than 20,000+ feet.

    stay safe.
    "He'll regret it to his dying day....if ever he lives that long."----The Quiet Man

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

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    Regular Member Prophet's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rscottie View Post
    As there seems to be no other recourse nowadays to get a bad law changed other than getting charged and convicted for violating it and then appealing it, we can only hope that this Lawyer has the wherewithal to pursue this to the end.
    Maybe that was his intention all along.

    Think about it. He's a lawyer, he's an activist, and he's high profile. If we wanted a guy to get busted on the draconian bs anti gun laws of New York, its this guy. Here's hoping he's crazy like a fox.

  15. #15
    Campaign Veteran skidmark's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by Prophet View Post
    Maybe that was his intention all along.

    Think about it. He's a lawyer, he's an activist, and he's high profile. If we wanted a guy to get busted on the draconian bs anti gun laws of New York, its this guy. Here's hoping he's crazy like a fox.

    Maybe folks are just too caught up in the hoping for change thing. (Sorry if that made your tummy turn sour, but I wantted to get your attention.)

    As already noted, there is a rather large body of case law and to date NY State has not lost. Challenges based on 2A, FOPA, and the fact that it's a day ending with the letter "Y" have all failed. While I am not absolutely positive, putting on my Amazing Kreskin cap leads me to the conclusion that trying another challenge under McDonald is doomed to failure as well for the same reasons all the others have failed.

    There is no denying the situation sucks, but there is also no denying there is only one sure way to improve it - by getting the state law changed. Only someone with a possession permit may posses a firearm in NYS, and there is currently no way someone who is not a NYS resident can get a NYS firearm possession permit. Since it appears NYS is in no real danger of losing a challenge by someone transiting the state the only way to get the law changed is via a grassroots effort.

    stay safe.
    "He'll regret it to his dying day....if ever he lives that long."----The Quiet Man

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

    "No matter how much contempt you have for the media in all this, you don't have enough"
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    Regular Member rscottie's Avatar
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    There is another thing to consider.

    There is a major push for National Reciprocity on Concealed Carry Permits.

    This case will highlight many of the points made in support of that law.

    I do not think in a heartbeat that this was ignorance of the law.

    I think it was planned.

    Hopefully, (sorry, true hope, not the false Obama kind) his plan includes how to keep his bottom out of jail and he does not get convicted of a felony.
    Last edited by rscottie; 12-16-2011 at 10:05 AM.

  17. #17
    Regular Member Gunslinger's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skidmark View Post
    Maybe folks are just too caught up in the hoping for change thing. (Sorry if that made your tummy turn sour, but I wantted to get your attention.)

    As already noted, there is a rather large body of case law and to date NY State has not lost. Challenges based on 2A, FOPA, and the fact that it's a day ending with the letter "Y" have all failed. While I am not absolutely positive, putting on my Amazing Kreskin cap leads me to the conclusion that trying another challenge under McDonald is doomed to failure as well for the same reasons all the others have failed.

    There is no denying the situation sucks, but there is also no denying there is only one sure way to improve it - by getting the state law changed. Only someone with a possession permit may posses a firearm in NYS, and there is currently no way someone who is not a NYS resident can get a NYS firearm possession permit. Since it appears NYS is in no real danger of losing a challenge by someone transiting the state the only way to get the law changed is via a grassroots effort.

    stay safe.
    The law is unconstituional on its face and can be so held with the proper court action. The 2A has been incorporated and peaceful transit is well established. This law denies nonresidents of NY peaceful transit through the gulag while exercising a constitutional right. That is the basis that it can be successfully challenged on, and McDonald does indeed change the playing field. There is no case law that I can find subsequent to McDonald. If you have a citation, post it, otherwise you assume status quo and that is not the situation now. That being said, too much is not known about the instant case for speculation.
    "For any man who sheds his blood with me this day shall be my brother...And gentlemen now abed shall think themselves accursed, they were not here, and hold their manhoods cheap whilst any speaks who fought with us on Crispin's day." Henry V

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    This suggestion, while a smart idea, kind of limits the travel opportunities for those of us that live in the free territory of Northern New England. Then again, so does travel to Southern New England, so I guess I'm stuck in New Hampshire, Vermont and Maine.
    Quote Originally Posted by skidmark View Post
    Or route your trip around NY/NJ. Yes, it can add time and costs, but it avoids the potential hazards.

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    Regular Member hammer6's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by skidmark View Post
    This is being talked about all over the gun boards, as well as the travel boards and elsewhere.

    That being said, I'm still trying to figure out how this doofus thought he could do what it seems he did, given the amazingly large body of case law and publicity that says NY State can bust you for possessing a firearm in NY without a possession permit, when you move baggage between airlines. I know I'm committing an error here, but isn't this well-enough known to make someone avoid the possibility of getting wrapped up like he did?

    I'm also trying to find out if this guy made an overnight stop, although taking the firearm-containing baggage out of the sterile area or not of the airport has nothing to do with how NY looks at FOPA vs its firearms possession laws. Further, just to whine about it, the CCW permit has nothing to do with FOPA or NY possession laws - bringing it up is a red herring.

    Understand that I am by no means supporting NY State's laws or their legal position. I'm merely noting that they have not yet lost a case when someone has challenged them, which says to me that one needs to do things a bit differently when transiting NY.

    Check your baggage directly through to your destination, and let the airlines handle it. But since it involves baggage with a firearm they are most likely going to be reluctant to do that if it means transporting your baggage between carriers.

    Or ship your firearm(s) to yourself at your destination. Yes, it adds expense to your trip. But it avoids the expense of legal fees and loss of your 2A and other rights.

    Or route your trip around NY/NJ. Yes, it can add time and costs, but it avoids the potential hazards. It also gives you the opportunity to see the country from a perspective other than 20,000+ feet.

    stay safe.


    i thought he was checking in at the airport?

    edit:

    yeah- i just went and read the article...it's the first information they give! he was checking in for a flight....
    Last edited by hammer6; 12-16-2011 at 02:24 PM. Reason: add
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    Regular Member hammer6's Avatar
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    i still don't understand why everyone is saying he was "carrying" it....it says it was unloaded and in a lockbox....that's transporting, not carrying...just like if he was in a car- he'd have to have it unloaded in a box in the trunk, he's doing the same thing at the airport- unloaded and in his check-in bag...
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    Campaign Veteran skidmark's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by hammer6 View Post
    i still don't understand why everyone is saying he was "carrying" it....it says it was unloaded and in a lockbox....that's transporting, not carrying...just like if he was in a car- he'd have to have it unloaded in a box in the trunk, he's doing the same thing at the airport- unloaded and in his check-in bag...

    New York believes that possessing a firearm without a possession permit is a violation of their law. If you transit NY without touching the container the firearm is locked within you could probably get away with it. But if you carry your baggage - with the firearm properly locked in a separate container inside your baggage - NY says you are in possession of the firearm and are in possession illegally.

    Admittedly there is no case law post-McDonald, but let's all remember that McDonald merely incorporates against the States the Heller holding that you can have a firearm in your house. FOPA is about starting from where it is legal to posses and ending up where it is legal to posses without being arrested while transiting otherwise prohibitted States. Checking into an airline in NY is, according to all prior NY pleadings, starting in a place where it is illegal to posses. To amplify a bit further - they say you took one journey to get to NY, and tried to take another journey to get out of NY. It is a bit easier to beat when driving or taking the train through NY, but quite a bit of that is because you do not need to announce you have a firearm with you within the borders of NYS.

    The only consolation to be seen is that in the majority of cases NY has decided that collecting a fine is preferable to paying to incarcerate someone for several years. The downside is that even if one does no actual time in prison one loses 2A and other rights if convicted.

    stay safe.
    "He'll regret it to his dying day....if ever he lives that long."----The Quiet Man

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

    "No matter how much contempt you have for the media in all this, you don't have enough"
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    Regular Member rscottie's Avatar
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    Didn't Heller also affirm that possession of firearms is an individual right?

    The laws in NY are a defacto ban for non residents as there is no allowance for possession.

    I think this will be a good case to challenge their laws.

  23. #23
    Campaign Veteran skidmark's Avatar
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    Quote Originally Posted by rscottie View Post
    Didn't Heller also affirm that possession of firearms is an individual right?

    The laws in NY are a defacto ban for non residents as there is no allowance for possession.

    I think this will be a good case to challenge their laws.

    Heller says you have the right to posses a handgun in your home in federal enclaves like DC. Nothing more. McDonald says you have that right in all of the States, Territories, Possessions and Trust Territories. Nothing else. This case is a poor choice to even try to beat NY's possession permit law because it does not involve a NY resident.

    Nobody from NY seems to want to challenge the possession permit law.

    stay safe.
    "He'll regret it to his dying day....if ever he lives that long."----The Quiet Man

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

    "No matter how much contempt you have for the media in all this, you don't have enough"
    ----Allahpundit

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    See how much help the feds gave this guy by passing a protective law? The reciprocity law would be just the same, at best.
    Don't believe any facts that I say! This is the internet and it is filled with lies and untruth. I invite you to look up for yourself the basic facts that my arguments might be based upon. This way we can have a discussion where logic and hints on where to find information are what is brought to the forum and people look up and verify facts for themselves.

  25. #25
    Campaign Veteran skidmark's Avatar
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    Seems our hero was checking in for a flight home after spending 4 1/2 days in NYC making the rounds of the talkshow/lecture circuit. If accurate (which it seems to be) them he was a stupidhead and deserves everything he gets, plus a bit more for making us lawabiding citizens pay for his egotistical mistakes.

    http://tpmmuckraker.talkingpointsmem...ith_handgu.php

    publius2009 Here's what I've found so far on Meckler's timeline:
    Mon, Dec 12
    10:16 AM
    CNN's "American Morning"
    Time Warner Center at Columbus Circle
    http://am.blogs.cnn.com/2011/12/12/w...ders-weigh-in/
    Mon, Dec 12
    6:00-8:30PM
    Personal Democracy Media Flash Conference: "From the Tea Party to Occupy Wall Street and Beyond--The Future of Networked Democracy"
    Richard L. Rosenthal Pavilion
    10th Floor
    60 Washington Square South
    New York, 10012
    http://www.hillmanfoundation.org/blo...rked-democracy http://pdmteaows.eventbrite.com/
    Tue, Dec 13
    7-8PM
    Lou Dobbs Tonight
    FOX News Studio
    1211 Avenue Of The Americas
    New York, NY 10036
    http://www.foxbusiness.com/on-air/lo...list_id=164630
    Wed, Dec 14
    Tom Sullivan Radio Show
    FOX News Radio
    1211 Avenue Of The Americas
    New York, NY 10036
    http://radio.foxnews.com/2011/12/14/...-the-gop-race/

    If any of the reporters, producers, or staff on these any of these shows saw Meckler in possession of his gun or his gun safe, then the need to do the right thing and make a statement to their bosses, the NYPD and the public. At a minimum one or more of these shows/networks/conferences paid his airfare, hotels, meals, and travel expenses. If it turns out later they knew something and didn't say anything, then they deserve to be fired. Otherwise, they should be charged with concealing or assisting a felony.



    Anybody want to revise their comments/sentiments?

    stay safe.
    "He'll regret it to his dying day....if ever he lives that long."----The Quiet Man

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

    "No matter how much contempt you have for the media in all this, you don't have enough"
    ----Allahpundit

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