U.S.A. – -(Ammoland.com)- In addition to having his house condemned, a 64-year-old New York homeowner is facing up to four years in prison for using an unregistered gun he inherited from his father to defend himself against a duo of repeat burglars, Bizpac Review Senior Staff Writer Vivek Saxena reports.
Ronald Stolarczyk of Deerfield reportedly came home to a “burglary in progress” and shot suspects Patricia Anne and Nicholas Talerico, both of whom died from their wounds. Stolarcsyk’s attorney told local reporters his client “was scared to death and he thought they were going to kill him.”
The homicides aren’t why the homeowner was arrested and charged:
“Because Stolarczyk had never registered his deceased father’s gun, he was arrested and charged with criminal possession of a firearm.”
That's a “Class E felony” per a New York State Police press release.
Adding insult to injury, he is now evicted from his home, condemned by authorities because it had no electricity or running water. But for the risks and punishments of getting caught, authorities are making a pretty good case for “Shoot, shovel and shut up.”
Let’s review the bidding:
True, the guy is peculiar. He’s a hoarder who was living in conditions that did not comply with community housing requirements. But he didn’t even buy his gun, he inherited it, presumably along with other property. Had it been a deliberate purchase, it would be reasonable to conclude he had some understanding of “legal” transfer and possession requirements (even though the true standard for legality is supposed to assume gun ownership “shall not be infringed.”)
It’s not reasonable to presume someone who had a gun passed down to him on his father’s death would have an understanding of New York’s complex system of firearms edicts. “Ignorance of the law is no excuse” may be an expectation, but that doesn’t make it a realistic or a just one, as:
“The criminal laws are not always easy to track down and not always easy to understand. In fact, many laws are nearly impossible to understand in all of their complexity, and the whole corpus of federal law is in fact impossible to know. There are so many crimes in the federal law books that no conscientious citizen (or even a conscientious legislator, law enforcement officer, lawyer, or judge) could possibly know what they require. This puts Americans at risk of conviction and imprisonment for the violation of laws that are impossible to find and impossible to know, effectively discarding the traditional protection that conviction requires culpability.”
As Stalin’s enforcer Lavrentiy Beria boasted:
“Show me the man and I’ll show you the crime.”
Compare that attitude to the reason we supposedly have our government in the first place as articulated in the Preamble to the Constitution:
“We the People of the United States, in Order to form a more perfect Union, establish Justice, insure domestic Tranquility, provide for the common defence, promote the general Welfare, and secure the Blessings of Liberty to ourselves and our Posterity, do ordain and establish this Constitution for the United States of America.”
Rather than “secure the blessings of liberty,” New York gun laws advance the interests of the basest of totalitarians. It's hardly surprising that DA Scott McNamara is a Democrat, or that he was originally appointed by disgraced degenerate gun-grabber and former Governor Eliot Spitzer.
In Stolarczyk’s case, even if the prosecution ends up going easy on the sentencing, what he’s being charged with is a felony, and that will result in his being designated a “prohibited person,” barred for life from owning a gun. Before any antis start screaming about the guy’s peculiarities making him suspect, and the need to close the “hoarder loophole” for people living off the utility grid in ramshackle dumps, we ignore the mandate for full due process that proves someone is a danger at the peril of our liberty. And even then, resulting prohibitions are demonstrably futile).
Stolarcsyk is scheduled back in court on August 5. Gun owners who wish to help with his legal defense can do so on his Go Fund Me page, which has already exceeded its goal number, but which will need every cent and more in order to accommodate setbacks and appeals.
About David Codrea:
David Codrea is the winner of multiple journalist awards for investigating/defending the RKBA and a long-time gun owner rights advocate who defiantly challenges the folly of citizen disarmament. He blogs at “The War on Guns: Notes from the Resistance,” is a regularly featured contributor to Firearms News, and posts on Twitter: @dcodrea and Facebook.