Gun Control Bumper Sticker Part of Criminal Complaint

Gun Control Bumper Sticker Part of Criminal Complaint

Dean Weingarten

Arizona -(Ammoland.com)- An auto mishap morphed into a defensive shooting in Rochester, Minnesota on Sunday, January 14th, a little after 8 a.m. 

A car driven by 17 year old Muhammed Rahim, with another 17-year-old male and two teenage girls in the car, spun out of control and crashed into the side of the road in slippery conditions.

A car driven by 25 year old Alexander Weiss managed to avoid the out of control vehicle. He pulled to the side of the road to see if the people in the crashed vehicle needed assistance. Muhammed then backed up the crashed vehicle and hit Weiss' vehicle.

Weiss got out. So did Muhammed and the other male occupant. They approached Weiss and threatened him.

Weiss, a carry permit holder, retrieved a pistol and called the police. The confrontation escalated and Weiss shot Muhammed.

 Two on one makes it a disparity of force situation. It is hard to know how this will play out in the courts.  The statement of probable cause shows Weiss did not just “draw and fire”.  Muhammed approached within inches of Weiss while the firearm was displayed.

Muhammed dared Weiss to fire. Weiss says that Muhammed attempted to grab his pistol.  Muhammed's passenger said they never touched Weiss. The statements are not necessarily contradictory.

The police arrived on the scene and arrested Weiss. The police officer included the fact that Weiss had a bumper sticker on his vehicle that said “GUN CONTROL IS HITTING YOUR TARGET”  in the statement of probable cause.

From kimt.com:

According to the autopsy, Rahim died from a single gunshot wound. Police say only one 911 call was received, and that came from Weiss.

The Police Department says Weiss has a permit to carry a firearm under state law and the criminal complaint says Weiss had a bumper sticker on his car saying “Gun Control Means Hitting Your Target.”

According to Rochester police, a witness to the shooting came forward and provided a statement that police say made them more confident in the second-degree murder charge.

Police say the witness was driving through the area and was a few feet away from the shooting. Police say she saw two men get into a confrontation and saw Weiss draw his weapon and fire.

Here is the statement of probable cause from the Rochester police officer.

Gun Control Bumper Sticker Part of Criminal Complaint
Gun Control Bumper Sticker Part of Criminal Complaint

In another interview with the startribune.com, Rochester police Captain John Sherwin made this statement:

 “There was no physical assault, and by that I mean punches thrown,” Sherwin said Tuesday.

I am sure Captain Sherwin knows that punches are not necessary for physical assault. In the probable cause document, Weiss says Muhammed pushed him, as part of the confrontation.

It is interesting that Officer Brian Roussell found it worth while to include the political bumper sticker as part of the probable cause document.  It is hard to see it has any relevance to the charge of 2nd degree murder.  There are no statements by the two teen girls that were in the vehicle driven by Muhammed. Perhaps they did not see anything of the altercation.

Muhammed came to  the U.S. from Iraq six years ago, with his family.

2017 by Dean Weingarten: Permission to share is granted when this notice is included.

About Dean Weingarten:

Dean Weingarten has been a peace officer, a military officer, was on the University of Wisconsin Pistol Team for four years, and was first certified to teach firearms safety in 1973. He taught the Arizona concealed carry course for fifteen years until the goal of constitutional carry was attained. He has degrees in meteorology and mining engineering, and recently retired from the Department of Defense after a 30-year career in Army Research, Development, Testing, and Evaluation.

  • 36 thoughts on “Gun Control Bumper Sticker Part of Criminal Complaint

    1. So I guess if I’m in my car with a child, and it gets hit by a car with a “Planned Parenthood” sticker on it, that a child injured in my car would be able to get the driver arrested for attempted abortion? Makes as much sense. Or if we were white, and the ‘hittee’s” car had a BLM sticker on it???

      Bad ruling by a cop who wanted to make a name for himself in ‘some community’.

    2. Weiss was assualted when his car was intentionally hit.. The policeman erred by using the bumper sticker as an intent for a 2nd. degree murder charge.A good lawyer will take care of that part. Now for witnesses. There was probably more than the one woman at 8am. As far as Muhammed being close, any burn marks in his clothing should prove that. The fact that the shooter called 911 does not sound like he intended to shoot helmet head. .

    3. Insurance from USCCA or NRA CarryGuard makes sense. Silly cute Tshirts, bumper stickers make sense IF you’re a Marine in a combat zone and the Tshirt under your uniform says Kill e’m all and let God sort it out.
      Fifty+ years ago I put up a tin sign on the farm gate post. It said No Trespassing, Trespassers will be shot. Survivors will be shot again.
      Glad I never had to shoot anybody.

    4. Stupid gun-related bumper stickers are just that – stupid. Nobody has ever gotten a promotion, laid, or had anything positive happen to them because of a bumper sticker. Ever.

      If it’s a funny sticker, laugh at it. Then put it back on the rack, and move on.

      (Furthermore, if you want to invite criminals to know you have a gun in the car, feel free to put on bumper stickers.)

      I carry concealed. My car does the same.

      1. Having a bumper sticker and stupidly storing firearms in on’s vehicle are two entirely separate issues. I don’t have bumper stickers and I also would never store my firearms in any of my vehicles.

        1. There are plenty of storage solutions for cars & trucks that are way more secure than a glove box.

          I’m willing to be that for most, they are more secure than the underwear drawer or nightstand they secure their home defense handguns in.

    5. A perp doesn’t have to touch a victim to be guilty of assault.
      It’s assault if you menace them. It’s battery if you actually make contact.

      1. @JoeTP, You are exactly correct and the Rochester, Minnesota police Captain, John Sherwin, has made an incorrect statement of the law.

    6. AZ has stand your ground law and this shoot appears to be justified.

      Statute
      ARS Criminal Code §13-411 Justification: Use of Force in Crime Prevention

      Statutory Definition
      A person is justified in threatening or using both physical force and deadly physical force against another if and to the extent the person reasonably believes that physical force or deadly physical force is immediately necessary to prevent the other’s commission of…a serious crime listed in subsection

    7. If Weiss is an NRA member, will they introduce that into evidence in court?

      Perhaps Rahim wanted to blame Weiss for the accident, hitting his vehicle after the fact,
      along with his three witnesses could put Weiss at fault for the accident.

      1. I don’t see the relevance of being an NRA member. I would object and if I were overruled use it as a point of appeal.

        1. @WB,

          I do believe that James is reference to the NRA was in direct comparison to the cops use of the bumper sticker as probable cause; if the bumper sticker is probable cause in the eyes of the cop, then membership in the NRA must surely hold equivalent probable cause.

          The bumper sticker portion will probably get chucked out simply because of the violation of freedom of speech First Amendment, but these days very few Court seem to be interested in actually understanding the Constitution contextually, and certainly not ruling in any constitutional context.

          I do my utmost to stay west of the Missouri River, and I intend to keep it that way!

    8. Maybe Weiss did not pull the trigger. Maybe Rahim pulled the barrel trying to take the gun. The forward motion of the whole pistol caused the trigger to disconnect the sear. Rahim assaulted Weiss and in doing so shot himself.

    9. NO, NO, NO, NO – Weiss is an idiot. 1. Mind your own business, 2. Mind your own business, 3. If a person approaches you in an aggressive manner you retreat, and he was able to do that when he got into his car for his phone and gun. If the Victim and Witness one had attacked him in his car, broke his window, threatened him, maybe he could defend his shooting as being justified. So all his other idiot friends would call him a p**** but guess what, he wouldn’t be in jail now. Duty to retreat or not, if you can do so safely, and he could, in fact he did, by getting into his car, and he then returned to the altercation armed. In most jurisdictions if you withdraw from a fight, and then return to the fight you are considered the aggressor. This should be one of Ayoob’s stores about how not to do it. An idiot! Freedom of speech is not the issue here, and his freedom of speech won’t do him any good in a cell. It does not do you any good to be right if it ends you in jail. An idiot! Go ahead and argue with this post. I dare you! But tell me where you live so I can stay far away from you.

      1. I could argue with you in principle but wont. In practice you are correct. If you get to a use of force with a firearm, have as many legal ducks in a row as you can. For example, he should have been the first party to call 911, stayed in his car, not displayed his gun. Bumper stickers are dumb. Having a pro-gun bumper sticker is like saying “come rob this parked car, there is a gun in here.”

        1. JohnBored, no one should store their firearms in a vehicle, even without a bumper sticker.

          After an accident, one typically exchanges information with the other party, fleeing the scene is also a crime.

          The shooter obviously should have handled the situation differently and better, but as we, including the armchair quarterbacks here, know hindsight is 20-20.

          Also the decedent was quite stupid, picking a fight with an armed man, and one that has a bumper sticker referencing accurate shooting skill.

          On a positive note, the shooter survived without injury, always a good thing.

    10. I’m pretty sure the bumper sticker in question is exactly the kind of bumper sticker Massad Ayoub warns people about not sporting lest it be used against you.

    11. I sincerel hope Mr. Weiss does NOT cop a plea. He was assaulted by a deadly weapon, the car driven by the now departed dirtbag, whodemonstrated strong aggression from the git go. After assaulting with a deadly weapon (his car) the deceased then approached physically with an accomplice, a disparity of force situation. Two counts of lethally potential assault. If the now dead punk really had approached to within inches, the autopsy and post mortem reports will have done powder analisis which can prove just how close the dead guy came before Mr. Weiss made the final decision to meet the assault with suitable deadly force. The very fact he waited until his assailant was that close indicates no malicious intent. If he’d had that, he’d have fired the instant the perp was first emerging from the car with which he had just committed felony assault with a deadly weapon… and been fully justified in doing so. Anyone deliberately crashes HIS car into MINE with no justification, I’d be thinking I was in immediate danger of imminent death or serious bodily harm, and respond accordingly.

      Put this in front of a jury and he’ll walk free. He shyould also recover his defense costs, as this charge is bogus. Hopefully the DA will read the details and make a wise, informed decision to drop all charges.

    12. I don’t think 2nd degree felony murder will stick but there is enough uncertainty around this case that Weiss will plead to manslaughter and serve about a year.

      Lesson here: never be good samaritan to those whose behavior is uncertain.

      1. @AB, “enough uncertainty” equals reasonable doubt. Put Rahim on trail. Rahim used his car as a deadly weapon, advanced, with another, on threateningly the victim, and Rahim pulled the pistol barrel causing the gun to go off. That is why only one shot was fired.
        Put the witness on trial. She was paying attention to her driving as required by law, right? The others are friends of Rahim and are prevaricating to get out of a jam. Find some police or prosecutorial misbehavior.
        Easy case. Why plead to anything. But it will be expensive.

    13. This is a case of a good Samaritan getting railroaded! The guy tried to hit him with his car! I wasn’t there so I don’t know if I’d have shot him or not. He obviously felt threatened after getting struck by this guys car. I don’t think it’s second degree murder….

      1. … as they (the police) are typically known to do.

        I don’t have any firearm related, firearm rights groups, or any other decal/stickers on my vehicles. I still can’t see where being able to shoot straight is intent. I guess the police truly do believe in spray and pray, which is what many of their crime scenes look like after they are involved in shooting incidents. And why they do not practice nearly as often as the rest of us.

    14. Mr. Weiss is a classic example of you can’t fix stupid. A good place for ‘macho’ bumper stickers is a place only YOU can see it.

      1. Please explain how a statement of fact, as expressed on the bumper sticker, characterizes it as macho or even threatening. On the other hand, I can clearly see how assaulting someone or their property with a multi-ton vehicle and then walking in their direction to confront them IS aggressive behavior. The biggest mistakes made by Weiss was getting out of his car and then submitting to an interview with the police before his lawyer was present. He should have stayed in his car, locked the doors and waited for the police. If he thought the other driver was going to leave the scene, he could have just gotten their license number and made sure he was able to identify the driver of the vehicle that assaulted his.

        1. Don’t Waste Your Breath on CK .
          He Makes Weird Statements on
          Everything and Everyone .
          I think he lives under a bridge .

        2. If you are so clueless about a obviously macho bumper sticker you are either extremely ignorant or twelve years old. Which is it?

      2. @Clark, Is there any evidence that he obtained or put the bumper sticker on his truck. I often put liberal idiotic bumper stickers on my neighbor’s truck to get a rise out of him.

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