Air gun classifide as "firearm" by reporter and judge in news


Ant Mod
May 27, 2004, 10:50 AM
Well at least in the UK.

YORK, England - A man who broke into an animal shelter armed with a samurai sword and an air rifle to retrieve his dog was jailed for 15 months on Wednesday. Paul Lovie, 47, broke into the shelter run by the Royal Society for the Prevention of Cruelty to Animals in York, northern England, in March to find his Jack Russell terrier.

Lovie was devastated when vets told him his pet was ill and needed to be euthanized, and he could not afford the bill.

Shelter officials confiscated the dog after Lovie was overheard saying he would “do it himself with a pickax,” prosecutors said.

“He decided to take matters into his own hands and go and get the dog,” prosecutor Dianne Campbell told the court. Once inside the shelter, Lovie, who also had lighter fluid and a hammer, called police and threatened staff.

Armed police arrived and Lovie surrendered after 90 minutes of negotiations.

He pleaded guilty to possessing a firearm with intent to cause fear or violence, having an offensive weapon and criminal damage.

Judge Paul Hoffmann said Lovie was lucky to be alive.

“There are too many incidents of people taking firearms out with them, then they complain when the police shoot them,” the judge said.

Catherine Silverton, Lovie’s lawyer, said her client had no previous convictions and his actions were completely out of character. “He was extremely emotionally dependent on this dog and he is devastated,” she said. The dog has died.

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May 27, 2004, 11:50 AM
Saw that yesterday and nearly posted it.

It's the same thing here in PRNJ.

To buy an airgun, you have to apply for a Firearms ID card
which takes requires fingerprinting and takes typicall 3
months to receive. They are then only sold through licensed
firearms dealers. Heck, a sling shot is considered a firearm in NJ.
Read the law yourself!

NJ Permanent Statutes Database ({173B}&softpage=Doc_Frame_PG42&wordsaroundhits=2&zz=)

f."Firearm" means any handgun, rifle, shotgun, machine gun, automatic or semi-automatic rifle, or any gun, device or instrument in the nature of a weapon from which may be fired or ejected any solid projectable ball, slug, pellet, missile or bullet, or any gas, vapor or other noxious thing, by means of a cartridge or shell or by the action of an explosive or the igniting of flammable or explosive substances. It shall also include, without limitation, any firearm which is in the nature of an air gun, spring gun or pistol or other weapon of a similar nature in which the propelling force is a spring, elastic band, carbon dioxide, compressed or other gas or vapor, air or compressed air,, or is ignited by compressed air, and ejecting a bullet or missile smaller than three-eighths of an inch in diameter, with sufficient force to injure a person.

May 27, 2004, 11:53 AM
Not all that unusual - in CT, comission of a crime using a pellet gun (or, I believe, anything that looks like a gun) will get you charged the same as if you'd used a real firearm.

May 27, 2004, 12:03 PM
Yep, we are already that far! Schoolboys got suspended in using a chicken-leg pointing at someone else and saying "boom".

A streched index-finger and an upright streched thumb might be considered a "firearm".

How lucky we are to have all this political correctness. It will kill us, but that's what the liberal lemmings want.

May 27, 2004, 12:05 PM
I agree that any gun, or even facsimile of a gun (including a finger in the pocket) should carry the full penalty as if it had been a real gun.

My point is however that NJ treats airguns and even slingshots as firearms for even possession and purchase.

May 27, 2004, 06:42 PM
Well, Guy Ritchie thinks air guns are real guns as well... Remember in Lock, Stock and Two Smoking Barrels... They have some serious bad guys coming through the front door and they only smart guy says, 'Get the rifle!'


May 27, 2004, 10:03 PM
In the U.K., air pistols over 6ft/lbs and air rifles over 12 ft/lbs are legally defined to be firearms.

May 28, 2004, 08:47 AM
That's about the only half-sensible thing I've ever seen come out of the UK concerning guns.

"airgun" is a dramatically vague statement. Remember, there are compressed air guns in the .50 cal range that I've seen reports of people actually hunting with. You'll *never* see a crime with one though :)

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