Illegal to own a gun in Wilmette, IL


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FRIZ
December 31, 2003, 10:59 AM
Wilmette Shooting

As many of you know from news reports, a home invasion earlier this week was foiled by a homeowner who shot the perp twice. The criminal fled the house by jumping through a window and was later arrested at the hospital. Also arrested was the homeowner because Wilmette, the town in which he lives, prohibits its citizens from owning handguns. This incident again illustrates the folly of denying citizens the right to access the best means of self defense available - the handgun. This case is still developing and the ISRA will be watching it closely. More later...

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WR Olsen
December 31, 2003, 11:09 AM
I find it hard to believe that a town can outlaw a persons ability to provide for their own protection in their own house!

Dateline: Wilmette, IL - 12/31/2003

Sun-Times
BY FRANK MAIN

The suspected burglar's big mistake was returning to the scene of the crime in upscale Wilmette: The resident who lives in the home confronted the intruder and shot him twice with a handgun.

The 31-year-old man had sneaked into a home in the North Shore suburb near the Bahai Temple late Monday, police said.

The wounded man, who had entered the house through a ''dog door,'' fled through a front window of the resident's home and drove off in a BMW sport utility vehicle that the resident had reported stolen Sunday night.

"He drove it to the hospital, got out and collapsed," said Wilmette Officer Roger Ockrim.

As the alleged burglar recovered Tuesday in St. Francis Hospital in Evanston, police investigated whether he was responsible for other overnight burglaries in Wilmette neighborhoods east of Green Bay Road. Extra patrols have been assigned to those neighborhoods since the police issued a burglary alert Dec. 4.

A neighbor said a burglar recently entered his home and stole his wife's purse. "Maybe these break-ins will stop now," he said.

Two felony counts of residential burglary were filed Tuesday evening against Morio Billings of the 2100 block of South Trumbull in Chicago, said John Gorman of the Cook County state's attorney's office. Billings also is charged with possession of a stolen vehicle.

The suspect may not be the only one in trouble. Possession of a handgun is illegal in the village of Wilmette, Ockrim said.

"The central issue is that a resident of Wilmette has been burglarized, his family has been traumatized and there is a shooting," he said. "At some point, we will revisit the issue that this person possessed a handgun in violation of the ordinance. Whether or not the individual will be prosecuted depends on the totality of the circumstances."

The 54-year-old resident said only that he did not know the intruder.

Wilmette police said they had responded to an alarm at a home in the 0-100 block of Linden at 10:34 p.m. Monday. As police drove to the home, the resident called 911 and reported he fired several shots at an intruder.

A short time later, St. Francis Hospital told police a 31-year-old man arrived in the emergency room with two bullet wounds. Gorman said Billings underwent surgery for gunshot wounds to the left shoulder and calf.

Linux&Gun Guy
December 31, 2003, 11:53 AM
This is a Outrage! It wouldn't be so bad if they had banned big black ugly handguns but they banned all handguns. Hmm...Can they own revolvers or sawed off shotguns with a lisence?

7.62FullMetalJacket
December 31, 2003, 12:34 PM
"Maybe these break-ins will stop now,"

I guess there is only one criminal mastermind cognizant of their "gun-free zone." :rolleyes:

Zundfolge
December 31, 2003, 12:46 PM
This could work out well ... maybe this guy will fight in court and it could work its way up to SCOTUS ... might be helpful to clarify the 'individual right' of the 2A.

Pilgrim
December 31, 2003, 01:00 PM
This could work out well ... maybe this guy will fight in court and it could work its way up to SCOTUS ... might be helpful to clarify the 'individual right' of the 2A.

Some gun rights organization that can fund the appeals needs to get to this guy before he rolls over and plays dead by accepting a plea bargain.

Pilgrim

seeker_two
December 31, 2003, 01:07 PM
This would be a perfect 2A case for SCOTUS...

...that is, if I trust SCOTUS to come down on our side. :scrutiny:

7.62FullMetalJacket
December 31, 2003, 01:15 PM
I do not see why this is a test case for 2A. People also have the right to assemble. If this village wants no guns, then that is a local decision. You are pitting the 1st against the 2nd, which is a sure recipe for disaster.

If you want to own a gun, and you feel the need to provide for your own security, then MOVE from Wilmette, IL and assemble with people of like mind. I know that I will be crossing this one off my list of places to visit/reside.

Its a big country and you have CHOICES. :neener:

lee n. field
December 31, 2003, 01:32 PM
I find it hard to believe that a town can outlaw a persons ability to provide for their own protection in their own house!

It's been that way for years. Does Morton Grove ring a bell for you? This was back in the Carter years, I think, when a Chicago and a couple 'burbs (<spit>) used their phenominal home rule powers to ban handguns. Ill-i-noise has no preemption.

Langenator
December 31, 2003, 01:39 PM
7.62-

What this would be a good case for is not only the individual right protected by the Second Amendment, but the 'incorporation' of the 2nd under the 14th. The 2nd remains, IIRC, the only Amendment in the BoR that has not been applied to the states through the 14th.

County and municipal governments are recognized as creatures of the state government. The 14th applies the limitations of the BoR to state governments. Therefore, state, county, and municipal governments may not restrict the RKBA. It has nothing to do with the right to assemble and everything to do with the government restricting Second Amendment freedoms.

spartacus2002
December 31, 2003, 01:46 PM
If this village wants no guns, then that is a local decision. You are pitting the 1st against the 2nd, which is a sure recipe for disaster.

If you want to own a gun, and you feel the need to provide for your own security, then MOVE from Wilmette, IL and assemble with people of like mind.

How about we find a place where we vote slavery back in? And then we vote that all blonde females with large breasts belong to all the men in common?:rolleyes:

Oh yeah, that would be abrogation of basic human rights by the voting process, which our system of law prohibits. But hey, we're talking guns, and they are evil...

jimpeel
December 31, 2003, 01:47 PM
They didn't ban ALL firearms, just handguns. This will be their argument that they did not violate the guy's 2A rights. USSC will concur or refuse to hear the case which will be upheld at the lower level.

The only argument that might be valid in the case of Militia use would be that handguns were invented, and used in military conflict, prior to the advent of the long gun.

El Tejon
December 31, 2003, 01:58 PM
You guys are obviously too young to remember Morton Grove.:scrutiny:

ChuckB
December 31, 2003, 02:03 PM
One of Wilmette's council members made one of those unbelievably idiotic statements that anti-gun people seem to find logical. He said that, while he saw no reason to change the handgun ban, he sure was glad that the homeowner had a gun. And these people make laws and run governments????

Chuck

7.62FullMetalJacket
December 31, 2003, 02:16 PM
Langenator and Spartacus,

Federal supremacy is a touchy issue with the 2A. DC, NY, MG IL, and others ban some or all guns. This has stood for years. The sheeple feel secure(?).

Be careful what you ask for. If the 14th's equal protection clause applies here, then can it be applied everywhere? Are all local and state laws required to be uniform? Speed limits? Moving violations? Concealed carry? Body armor? Auto emission controls? Where does it end?

The Republic was started with the idea of competition among states to preserve freedom. For example, if California becomes too authoritarian, people will move to states with more freedom (like the Mtn states) and California will be forced to change their ways to coax the ex-pats back or shrivel on the vine. There is also protection for the like-minded in localities.

Under your view, all states will eventually end up under the same laws. Where is the relief valve?

All politics is local and that is where these decisions need to be made. I do not need the heavy hand of federal government telling my local, like-minded population to do anything differently than we have already decided.

Yes, there are extremes, such as slavery, or capital crimes which must be not be harbored. But federal intervention only in EXTREME personal/human rights issues. A free citizen and gun owner can choose not to live in Wilmette, but a slave has no choice, before we start these apples/oranges debates.

Again, all politics should local. I want no part of Washington, and I do not need a Senator from New York telling me what I should be doing. They should worry about national defense and other limited functions as presented in the US Constitution.

seeker_two
December 31, 2003, 02:21 PM
Be careful what you ask for. If the 14th's equal protection clause applies here, then can it be applied everywhere? Are all local and state laws required to be uniform? Speed limits? Moving violations? Concealed carry? Body armor? Auto emission controls? Where does it end?

No. The laws won't be the same everywhere. But every government DOES have the responsibility to limit itself from violating the rights of the people as eneumerated in the BOR. Just because speed limits can differ from state to state doesn't mean that one state can refuse to acknowledge one's right to free speech or to keep and bear arms.

Of course, this only applies to a CONSTITUTIONAL government...:rolleyes:

spacemanspiff
December 31, 2003, 02:42 PM
is it the Right to Keep and Bear Arms?

or the Right to Keep and Bear SOME Arms?

El Tejon
December 31, 2003, 02:49 PM
space, this is Chicago and its 'burbs: one has NO rights. There is no 2A in Illinois, guys! Remember the Morton Grove case?:uhoh:

7.62FullMetalJacket
December 31, 2003, 02:52 PM
El T,

Please refresh my brain. Was the Morton Grove case resolved in court? How? I am lazy (and should be working). :rolleyes:

El Tejon
December 31, 2003, 03:00 PM
7.62, 2A does not apply to the states via 14th Amendment. Supreme Court denied cert. Thus, handgun ban was upheld.

Remember, it is also Illinois. Thousands, upon thousands of laws, that very few obey (especially grad skul students who were born and raised in Free America).:cool:

7.62FullMetalJacket
December 31, 2003, 03:17 PM
Thanx.

:D

rdbrowning
December 31, 2003, 03:44 PM
I'm glad MI passed a pre-emptive law so that local authorties can not restrict a person's gun rights farther than what the state does. At least here if you get a CCW it is good state wide. Some cities have tried to restrict CCW in their jurisdictions but our SC upheld the Michigan Coalition of Responsible Gun Owners lawsuit to stop it. If it is legal to own a pistol in the state a city can't disallow it.

Standing Wolf
December 31, 2003, 04:03 PM
I find it hard to believe that a town can outlaw a persons ability to provide for their own protection in their own house!

I don't. There are representatives of the Democratic (sic) party from coast to coast.

spartacus2002
December 31, 2003, 11:12 PM
I never said I wanted the Feds to make all the laws uniform across the nation. I believe in the free market of ideas, and the states as the great laboratories.

My point was that in a Republic, there are certain principles that are not subject to change based on how a majority of voters or their elected representatives "feel" about it. Under common law and the 2A, self-defense thru the ownership and possession of firearms is one of those rights that cannot be outlawed. I don't give a hoot in hell how many laws are passed banning guns, or how many courts uphold those laws, such laws are unconstitutional and wrong, morally, legally, and as a practical matter.

Bud Wiser
January 1, 2004, 02:52 AM
Thanks for the information and on another note, the Illinois State Rifle Association should stop hanging out as much at the Range and start filing Law Suits against these towns that think they can pass laws abolishing the 2nd Amendment.

N3rday
January 1, 2004, 03:03 AM
Hate to be n00by...but what is SCOTUS?

jimpeel
January 1, 2004, 04:00 AM
SCotUS (or SCOTUS) = Supreme Court of the United States. Also known as USSC United States Supreme Court .

4570Rick
January 1, 2004, 04:08 AM
For over half a decade, schools have been in decline, programming instead of educating. Then we elect these mindless muppets and this is the result.:scrutiny:

tyme
January 1, 2004, 04:18 AM
USSC is shorter, but can be confused with the U.S. Sentencing Commission. So SCOTUS tends to be used.

clubsoda22
January 1, 2004, 05:25 AM
According to a post in the "general gun discussions" forum, this is not a law, but a policy set by a Homeowners Association.

Orthonym
January 1, 2004, 05:30 AM
I thought the main argument for passing the 14th amendment was to apply the 2nd amendment to the states!I seem to recall reading arguments to that effect,by Congressmen debating the Amendment, quoted in a book I can't lay my hands on right this moment.Did not the U.S. Congress worry about the former slaves not being able to defend themselves against their former masters without good weapons? I write as a Southerner; the Feds were right in this case - a free citizen is a free citizen, and may and must arm himself, be he white or black, regardless of "previous condition of servitude".

I'm going off to find my printed authorities now.

Orthonym
January 1, 2004, 06:03 AM
It's "Safeguarding Liberty - the Constitution and Citizen Militias" edited by Larry Pratt, published by Legacy Communications, Franklin, Tennessee, 1995, ISBN 1-880692-18-X. The book is a collection of essays,some right scholarly, some less so.

The one I have in mind starts on page 135 of the book, and its title is "The Second Amendment: Toward an Afro-American Reconsideration." It's a SERIOUSLY scholarly essay; some of the pages are 80% footnotes and 20% text.(my guess)
This essay is by Robert J. Cottrol and Raymond T. Diamond.

At the top of page 174 in this book, we have


"The efforts to disarm the freedmen were in the background when the 39th Congress debated the Fourteenth Amendment, and played an important part in convincing the 39th Congress that traditional notions concerning federalism and individual rights needed to change. While a full exploration of the incorporation controversy is beyond the scope of this article, it should be noted that Jonathan Bingham, author of the Fourteenth Amendment's Privileges or Immunities Clause, clearly stated that it applied the Bill of Rights to the states. Others shared that same understanding."

Langenator
January 1, 2004, 08:57 AM
Orthonym-that's exactly the point, to include actual quotes from the authors (it's occasionally useful that everything Congress does or says gets recorded), that would have to be brought up in any case applying 2A to the states via 14A. As was stated by Justice Ginsburg during her confirmation hearings, there is no precedent incorporating the 2nd the way the rest of the BoR has been, despite the intent of it's authors.

Ginsburg is quoted in the footnotes of "Supreme Court Gun Cases" by Kopel, pg 89.

Kopel also mentions that the debates on the enabling legislation for the Freedmen's Bureau, which passed in the same time frame as the 14th, contain references to insuring the RKBA for the newly freed blacks.

Don Gwinn
January 1, 2004, 11:13 AM
I wish. The only orgs I could see doing that are ConcealCarry Inc. or the Champaign County Rifle Association, neither of which has anything approaching the amount of money needed to get started.

Anyway, I'm going to merge as many Wilmette threads as I can find. Stand by. . . . . . ..

Ah, that's better. Enjoy.

jimpeel
January 1, 2004, 11:58 AM
According to a post in the "general gun discussions" forum, this is not a law, but a policy set by a Homeowners Association The thread is here: http://www.thehighroad.org/showthread.php?s=&threadid=56904

Don Gwinn
January 1, 2004, 01:50 PM
Well, that's not true. It's a city ordinance.

jimpeel
January 1, 2004, 02:45 PM
That's what I thought. CNN, however, apparently had a segment on HOA restrictions that sounded like this case; according to the threadparent of the other thread.

Don Gwinn
January 1, 2004, 11:40 PM
Yeah, I hate to squash the other thread by bringing it up there. They're having such a good time talking about HOAs over there. ;)

And after all, we don't really know for sure that the threads are about the same cases. Could be two.

hammer4nc
January 8, 2004, 03:29 PM
Update: Despite some fuzzy language about whether the home defender would be charged in this case, they've apparently made the decision...not the right one.

Link: http://www.pioneerlocal.com/cgi-bin/ppo-story/localnews/current/wn/01-08-04-198113.html
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Wilmette man faces charges after shooting

BY KEN GOZE
STAFF WRITER

A Wilmette homeowner who shot and wounded an intruder succeeded in driving the burglar out of his house and may have ended a series of cat burglaries on the village's east side, but this week he faces weapons charges that include a local ordinance banning handgun possession.

The incident also could lead village trustees to revisit an issue which has received relatively little attention since board members passed the handgun ban nearly 15 years ago in the wake of the Laurie Dann school shootings.

Morio L. Billings, 31, was hospitalized at St. Francis Hospital in Evanston Dec. 29, after he fled the Linden Avenue neighborhood with two bullet wounds and a stolen sport utility vehicle police said he had stolen from the same house the night before.

After a Tuesday bond hearing, he was transferred to Cook County Jail, where he was held on a $3 million bond charged with two counts of residential burglary and one count of possession of a stolen motor vehicle.

The homeowner and victim of the break-in, 54-year-old Hale DeMar, will not face charges in the shooting, which prosecutors determined was justified.

But police on Tuesday said they planned to charge him with failing to have a current Firearm Owners Identification Card, a misdemeanor, and with violating Wilmette's 1989 handgun ordinance, which carries a fine of up to $750 and permanent loss of the weapons. He is to appear in court on both charges Feb. 6.

Police said they confiscated the .38-caliber revolver used in the shooting as well as a .380 automatic pistol from the home. They said DeMar had a FOID card but that it expired in 1988.

Although statements in the days after the incident seemed to indicate that police might not press the ordinance issue in the case, police said they were not wavering on the issue but waiting for facts and dealing with the more immediate issues surrounding the burglary suspect.

"It was not due to indecision but a desire to have complete information before coming to conclusions. Our strategy was to address the forcible felony charges first," said Police Chief George Carpenter.

Burglary history

Police said Billings has an extensive criminal history and came to the Chicago area from Coon Rapids, Minn. On the night before the shooting, he entered DeMar's house near the Bahai Temple by reaching through a dog door to open a deadbolt lock. At that time, police said he took a small television and a set of keys to the house and a BMV sports utility vehicle, which he used to flee the area.

When DeMar discovered and reported that crime early the next day, he was not able to get the locks changed and had his 8-year-old daughter and 10-year-old son stay in his upstairs room.

Shortly before 10:30 p.m., police said, Billings returned to the home, apparently seeking a computer monitor he believed to be a high-end flat screen television. When he used the stolen keys to open a kitchen door, DeMar was alerted by an alarm panel near his bedroom and went downstairs armed with the revolver.

He found himself across from a man masked with a hat and bandanna. Instead of leaving through the nearby door, police said Billings ran farther into the house in a circuitous motion.

At that point DeMar fired four of the six bullets in the gun. Billings was struck twice, once in the shoulder and once in the leg. After crashing through a window and running back to the stolen SUV, he drove through a yard and knocked down two fences to escape. Wilmette police found Billings shortly after that when St. Francis Hospital reported the arrival of a man seeking treatment for gunshot wounds. Billings' injuries were not considered life-threatening, but the bullet that struck his shoulder caused extensive damage lower in his arm.

Since mid-October, police have been investigating a pattern of cat burglaries in the area, break-ins or attempts by someone who knows or believes the home to be occupied at the time.

Shooter reacts

DeMar, who owns the Oak Tree Restaurant in Chicago, said he could not comment on specifics of the case but said he is not someone who wanted a confrontation.

"I don't think I acted any differently than a lot of people would have with two small children in the house. I'm a strong believer in the Second Amendment. I'm not a criminal, I'm a 55-year-old businessman," DeMar said.

"I think it's strange you're allowed to have a shotgun or semi-automatic rifle, but those aren't things you'd reach for when somebody breaks in," he said. "Those aren't things I'd have in the house."

Legal aspects aside, Carpenter said keeping handguns in a home and confronting intruders is a dangerous gamble

"We want to give good information to Wilmette residents about what we advise them to do if they ever find themselves in this situation. Lock the bedroom door and call 911. Protect yourselves and your children first," Carpenter said.

By confronting a burglar, homeowners take the risk of being overpowered or surprised by more than one intruder or by someone who is better armed, faster or just lucky.

Handgun dangers

The homeowner can end up wounded or killed in a struggle over their own weapon, Carpenter warned. Out of confusion and fear, some people trying to defend their home have accidentally shot their own family members returning late at night.

"These things go wrong in so many ways," Carpenter said.

Beyond the immediate danger of a struggle, Carpenter said a handgun in the home can facilitate suicides, accidental shootings and can turn domestic arguments into homicides.

The choice of burglary alarm also affects the outcome of incidents such as this one, Carpenter said. The alarm notified DeMar of the intrusion, but a loud audible alarm usually sends burglars running. As with many home systems, the alarm goes first to a remote monitoring center before police are notified. That delay can run as long as 10 minutes and in this case gave Billings enough time to get into a confrontation, run back to a stolen vehicle and begin his escape before police learned there was a problem. Some systems notify the Police Department directly.

It's not clear whether the incident will lead to calls to change or repeal the handgun ordinance, but it is possible that trustees will review the law or seek to remind people that it's still on the books and being enforced. Wilmette is one of a few suburbs to enact local handgun bans, including Morton Grove and Oak Park.
~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~~
Comment: Chief Carpenter must have studied his HCI/MMM brochures before issuing his statement :barf:

The rest of the article opens a window of opportunity, however, on possible review or repeal of the village ordinance. Maybe some local group like ISRA will carry the ball?

jimpeel
January 8, 2004, 05:13 PM
"We want to give good information to Wilmette residents about what we advise them to do if they ever find themselves in this situation. Lock the bedroom door and call 911. Protect yourselves and your children first," Carpenter said. He did. He grabbed a handgun and procted himself and his children first.

In your world, Mr. Carpenter, the police can get there within minutes; but seldom do.

The homeowner can end up wounded or killed in a struggle over their own weapon, Carpenter warned. Out of confusion and fear, some people trying to defend their home have accidentally shot their own family members returning late at night.

Beyond the immediate danger of a struggle, Carpenter said a handgun in the home can facilitate suicides, accidental shootings and can turn domestic arguments into homicides. Does that mean that noone would ever use a rifle or shotgun to commit suicide? Are the suicides that are committed by all other means a measure of the success of the handgun ban?

Why are you taking it upon yourself to attempt to protect people from themselves without their asking; but you deny any duty to protect me when I ask for protection and you fail to provide it?

fedlaw
January 14, 2004, 12:37 AM
Interesting Letters to the Editor
Chicago Sun-Times 01/13/04:

Letters to the Editor
Chicago Sun-Times

-----
In no position to judge

It's real easy for Wilmette Chief of Police George Carpenter to say Wilmette homes are much safer without a handgun in defending the arrest of Hale DeMar for shooting a home invader [''Man who shot intruder arrested,'' news story, Jan. 9] since because of his job, he is allowed to have a gun in his home. That was about the most stupid, political statement I have ever heard, and I am a Chicago police officer.

This entire country's foundation is based on freedom. And when a man cannot legally defend his family from an intruder, it's time not only to rid ourselves of the intruders but the politicians and those who defend their politically based jobs on such stupid and unconstitutional laws.

Mark Severino,
Jefferson Park

-----
Don't punish homeowner

If the man defending his family and his home from a criminal whose intent was unknown -- maybe burglary, maybe murder, maybe rape -- is going to be charged for having a gun, here's what I hope happens:

The judge orders him to pay a fine of $1, and the mayor of the town pays it for him. Anything beyond that should bring out every constitutional lawyer available and bring this case to national attention. The NRA should mobilize its forces on the town's front steps and have its lawyers sue Wilmette broke. The ACLU should mount its finest team of defense lawyers to aid this hero -- free. The governor should immediately offer a pardon and expunge from this man's record any conviction for anything relating to this travesty.

I'd be willing to bet that lots of people in Wilmette have guns, and if they didn't, they do now.

M. P. O'Neill,
East Side


-----
Nothing to show for gun ban

The editorial [''Wilmette's gun law dilemma,'' Jan. 5] on Wilmette's gun laws just drips with hypocrisy. Chicago made owning a handgun illegal more than two decades ago, and it has had zero effect on crime or gun violence. In fact, once again Chicago recaptured the title of ''murder capital.''

Former residents like myself long ago left the city and live where both our families and constitutional rights are safe.

Brian Williams,
Harwood Heights


-----
Better safe than sorry

What is important is the fact that the intruder the Wilmette homeowner shot was burglarizing that home for the second time. Why not? The burglar felt safe because of Wilmette's ordinance banning gun ownership within the village.

So the homeowner was forced to break the law to protect his family.

Bruce Monstovich,
Frankfort

artherd
January 14, 2004, 02:11 AM
States can make laws that infringe upon the Second Ammendment?

Really?

What about the First?

mmmm?

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