Fla. Police Return Rare Rifle to WWII Vet


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Frandy
July 15, 2005, 05:01 PM
WOW! :banghead:

July 15, 2005, 4:04 PM EDT

WEST PALM BEACH, Fla. -- Soon after World War II, American sailor Bruno Filippelli walked into a Tokyo shop and bought a Japanese army rifle and a saber for two packs of Chesterfield cigarettes. Six decades later it was collecting dust in his closet.

So last weekend, when police offered $75 Target gift cards to anyone who turned in a gun, Filippelli took it to the collection site. That was almost a bad move.

A gun collector saw a photo of the Arisaka Type 99 pressure test rifle in The Palm Beach Post and told Filippelli the gun is a rarity worth thousands. He asked for it back, but the police originally said no.

They planned to melt it down with the other 450 firearms collected or give it to a museum. But after the Post ran a story Friday about the Delray Beach resident's mistake, the police returned the gun.

"I think the publicity got too much for them," said Filippelli, 79. "Or maybe because I'm a vet or maybe they felt sorry for me."

He even got to keep the gift card, which he'll use to buy a present for his daughter.

Police did not immediately return calls for comment Friday, but had said that returning the gun would have defeated the purpose of the buyback program, which was to get guns off the street.

Fewer than 100 of the rifles were ever produced and maybe 50 are left, including about 20 in the United States, according to gun experts and dealers. The type of rifle was never used in the field. It was designed to test the chamber pressure and bullet velocity for the Type 99 rifle, which Japanese forces used throughout World War II.

Bob Adams, a rare-gun collector in New Mexico, said Filippelli's gun could be worth $5,000. He said police should have identified the gun as a pressure test rifle that would not be used in violent crimes and should have never accepted it.

"That gun is history, and destroying history does not help the street crime problem," Adams said.

Filippelli said Friday that he plans to take his time before deciding what to do next with the gun, but will most likely give it to a museum. He said he was stunned to learn the gun is valuable.

"It's like buying a picture that you don't think is worth anything and it turns out to be a Rembrandt," Filippelli said.



Fla. Police Return Rare Rifle to WWII Vet (http://www.newsday.com/news/nationworld/wire/sns-ap-gun-sellers-remorse,0,6513910.story?coll=sns-ap-nationworld-headlines)

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spacemanspiff
July 15, 2005, 05:06 PM
but had said that returning the gun would have defeated the purpose of the buyback program, which was to get guns off the street
i dont think that collecting dust in a closet is 'on the street'.

Jim Watson
July 15, 2005, 05:18 PM
Mr Adams credits the police with too much firearms knowledge.

PromptCritical
July 15, 2005, 05:19 PM
Definition of "on the street":

Any politically incorrect item not under total control of the government.

We must all understand these terms in the context in which they are used to have a better understanding of the enemy.

Vernal45
July 15, 2005, 05:20 PM
They planned to melt it down with the other 450 firearms collected or give it to a museum. But after the Post ran a story Friday about the Delray Beach resident's mistake, the police returned the gun.

"I think the publicity got too much for them," said Filippelli, 79. "Or maybe because I'm a vet or maybe they felt sorry for me."






Dont you know the police hate it when that happens.

They planned to melt it down

Right, melt it down, my arse. It would have found a NEW home. And not a museum.

Cesiumsponge
July 15, 2005, 05:30 PM
It's nice to know the guy got his rifle back...after getting much publicity requesting it be returned.

P95Carry
July 15, 2005, 05:37 PM
Good result and, oh man ... get guns off the street Am I ever SICK of hearing that worn out excuse. It is PATHETIC.

Now if it was something more like ''keeping guns out of criminal hands'' - it just might make some sense. But then that is in itself a near Nirvana anyways, it's just the regular legit' Joe Blow who is affected by all the ''guns off streets'' crap. :fire:

chaim
July 15, 2005, 05:46 PM
Quote:
but had said that returning the gun would have defeated the purpose of the buyback program, which was to get guns off the street


i dont think that collecting dust in a closet is 'on the street'


Well, that all depends upon how you look at it. If you think getting guns "off the street" means getting illegal guns out of criminal hands (i.e. "crime guns") then an old man storing an old WWII gun in his closet is not "on the street". If the mindset of the police and those supporting the buyback is that no "civilian" gun ownership is legitimate then having an old WWII vet storing an old WWII gun in his closet is indeed a gun "on the street".

The goal of these gun buybacks, and that statement is one more bit of evidence of that, is to "train" the general population in the mindset that there is/should not be such a thing as legitimate private use and ownership of firearms. Word choice matters.

jefnvk
July 15, 2005, 05:52 PM
Police did not immediately return calls for comment Friday, but had said that returning the gun would have defeated the purpose of the buyback program, which was to get guns off the street.

Somehow, I doubt a pressure test Arisaka is what the police are really worried about.

Then again, if they are giving $75 out for any gun, I think a bunch of fix-em-up Mosins could net me some cash.

BTW, I heard the same thing about a nice presentation, in a glass case Luger from some guy named Kaiser. Except that one wasn't returned.

Standing Wolf
July 15, 2005, 08:37 PM
Now if it was something more like ''keeping guns out of criminal hands'' - it just might make some sense.

Well, yeah, sure, but don't forget: the vast majority of convicted felons vote for representatives of the Democratic (sic) party.

thatguy
July 15, 2005, 09:42 PM
Not sure who is most stupid.

Guy for selling gun for pittance with no idea of what it is or what it's worth.

Guy selling gun to buy-up. (Buy back? How so when the Gun Gestapo never had it in the first place?)

Cops for running buy-up.

Cop who said this is getting guns off the street. (Or out of the closet, as the case may be.)

The other 450 morons who sold guns.

WAY too much stupidity going on here.

saltydog
July 15, 2005, 10:15 PM
i dont think that collecting dust in a closet is 'on the street'.

Thats a good one! :D I am surprised the police agency could not figure that one out on their own :eek: ....Oh well, what do you expect in this day and age. :o

chrisTx
July 15, 2005, 10:40 PM
at least he got it back. that's like the guy who recently found the thompson machine gun hidden in the wall while remodeling his house. if i'd been the one who found it, i would have driven to an NFA state and THEN said, "look what i found!"

XavierBreath
July 15, 2005, 11:21 PM
I just went out and checked the street in front of my house. Still no guns. :mad: When am I going to get guns flowing like rain down my street? What is the deal? I WANT GUNS IN MY STREET! :cuss:

Glad the police were at last forced to do the right thing in this case.

P95Carry
July 15, 2005, 11:27 PM
XB - but then - of course - you are countenancing and inviting the dreaded "rivers of blood" :rolleyes: :p

peacefuljeffrey
July 16, 2005, 12:14 AM
People, you must remember that this gun "buy-up" (thanks to the guy who coined that term for us) was the brainchild of the most utterly stupid, ineffective, obnoxious mayor I've ever known of apart from Marion Barry -- Lois "Li'l Hitler" Frankel. (http://www.flushfrankel.com)

There is a "crisis" of black-on-black, criminal-on-criminal retributional grudge crimes going on in a very high-crime area in West Palm Beach. It is localized. It is targeted. It is not really spilling over into "innocents." The police are getting near-zero cooperation from victims, families, neighbors -- everyone has their trap shut for one reason or another. (Protecting friends or family; fear of recriminations for ratting; desire to "take care of bid'ness" on one's own at a later date)

The mayor came out a couple of weeks ago and announced the plan for this "buy-up." I was disgusted to read of it in the paper, naturally. But I really expected them to net four, maybe five guns. I was suprised as hell to read of 450 turned in. But people in WPB can be pretty damned stupid a lot of the time. Did Mr. Japanese Rifle think he was doing society a good turn by ridding himself of a rifle he was never going to use to victimize anyone? Duh. He shouldn't have, but he probably did. He had to have known that the plan was to destroy the guns, so he really had to have been thinking, "Good, this dangerous ol' thing won't be around to hurt anyone anymore."

(Does anyone truly believe that in a state/county/city as corrupt as Florida, Palm Beach, West Palm Beach, the cops don't sift through surrendered guns to pick out the best? I know I don't. They may not all be rotten, but there are rotten ones.)

If Filippelli has an ounce of goodness in him, he will NOT PROFIT from this. He was ready to give the gun up for $75. He did so. They let him KEEP his $75 even though they didn't keep the rifle!! :eek: WHY?! FREE MONEY?! DO WE REALLY HAVE ENOUGH IN THE CITY COFFERS TO GIVE OUT FREE MONEY, ESPECIALLY TO REWARD STUPID MISTAKES IN JUDGMENT?!

Filippelli should be on the phone on Monday morning to arrange the uncompensated donation of this rifle to the National Firearms Museum.

If he doesn't, he's an asshat.

-Jeffrey

Tory
July 16, 2005, 11:42 AM
" ...if i'd been the one who found it, i would have driven to an NFA state and THEN said, 'look what i found!'"


I don't know what an "NFA state" is, as the matter falls primarily under Federal law. That is also why you cannot just drive "to an NFA state" and say, "'look what i found!'"

If the gun was not registered by the cut-off date (1988?), it cannot be registered. Regardless of what state you live in. Period.

Don Gwinn
July 16, 2005, 12:02 PM
Remember, children, that consequences are an old wives' tale. :scrutiny:

Phil Ca
July 16, 2005, 12:16 PM
"To keep guns off the street". I have owned guns for about 50 years now and I have never had a gun that went out on the street alone! In fact my guns are trained not to leave the house unless in my company.

Many years ago it became my lot to take some old firearms that had been used by the US Treasury Dept. and turn them into a foundry in Emeryville, California for destruction. There were old Colt Police Positive in .38 Special and a few Winchester 97 shotguns that were deemed excess or unservicable. That was one of the least pleasant days in my life. The fact that we had replaced the revolvers with S&W model 19s in .357 and the shotguns with new Remington 870 models did little to dim the thought that so much history was melted down that day.

I would rather have seen them turned into a non-operable paper weight than to melt them into slag. :mad:

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