By Scott Bach
Trenton, NJ –-(Ammoland.com)- Possession of all BB guns and air guns would carry 7-10 year prison sentences with no possibility of leniency.
Parents picking up their children at school after hunting or target shooting would also be at risk.
Victim disarmament zones would be ensured.
On Thursday, June 7 at 2:00 p.m., the New Jersey Assembly Law & Public Safety Committee is scheduled to consider A1216, legislation that would increase the penalty for possession of a “firearm” on the grounds of an educational institution, raising it from a third to second-degree crime. Second-degree crimes carry a presumptive 7-10 year prison sentence and a fine of up to $150,000, with no opportunity for New Jersey’s “pre-trial intervention leniency program, and very limited sentencing discretion by the judge.
New Jersey’s definition of “firearm” includes all BB guns and air guns, even though they are commonly regarded as toys in much of the country.
Someone who mistakenly possesses a BB gun or air gun on school grounds – even a broken one – would be subject to the lengthy and unforgiving prison sentence that A1216 imposes, with no possibility of leniency, and a presumption in favor of imprisonment.
Also, parents picking up their children at school after hunting or target shooting, or to go hunting or target shooting, would also be at risk of A1216’s draconian punishment if they enter on school grounds with a firearm unloaded and properly stored in their vehicle, even though they are not involved in criminal activity.
This thoughtless legislation also virtually ensures that New Jersey schools would become victim disarmament zones – even teachers licensed with gun permits would be subject to lengthy incarceration, chilling their right of self-defense to protect themselves and school children from attack.
Ironically, A1216 is a “solution” to a problem that has already been solved. Firearms possession for an unlawful purpose is already a second-degree crime in New Jersey, so this legislation adds nothing except cruel and unusual punishment for innocent mistakes.
ACTION: PLEASE IMMEDIATELY CONTACT MEMBERS OF THE ASSEMBLY LAW & PUBLIC SAFETY COMMITTEE AND TELL THEM TO VOTE “NO” ON A1216!
MEMBERS OF THE NEW JERSEY ASSEMBLY LAW & PUBLIC SAFETY COMMITTEE:
Charles Mainor (Chair) (D31)
Gilbert L. Wilson (Vice Chair) (D5)
Nelson T. Albano (D1)
P: (856) 696-7109
f: (856) 696-7159
Daniel R. Benson (D14)
Sean Connors (D33)
Joseph Cryan (D20)
Sean T. Kean (R30)
Gregory P. McGuckin (R10)
Erik Peterson (R23)
David P. Rible (R30)
Bonnie Watson Coleman (D15)
About Association of New Jersey Rifle and Pistol Clubs, Inc.
The Association of New Jersey Rifle and Pistol Clubs, Inc. is the official NRA State Association in New Jersey. Our mission is to implement all of the programs and activities at the state level that the NRA does at the national level. This mission includes the following: To support and defend the constitutional rights of the people to keep and bear arms. Visit: www.anjrpc.org