Machine gun case going to federal court

Discussion in 'In the News' started by mzmtg, Jan 6, 2007.

  1. mzmtg

    mzmtg Active Member

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    http://www.wnd.com/news/article.asp?ARTICLE_ID=53649

     
  2. Malum Prohibitum

    Malum Prohibitum Moderator Staff Member

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    Which Circuit is Arkansas and what is the Second Amendment case law there? The reason I ask is that this would be the result in the Ninth Circuit (not Arkansas), I should think, where the court has ruled that no individual has standing under the Second Amendment. They also recently ruled that the Commerce Clause allows Congress to regulate home made machine guns (they first ruled that the Commerce Clause did not authorize such regulation, but the Supreme Court remanded with an instruction to follow Raich, the "medical marijuana" case, so the Ninth Circuit reversed its earlier ruling).

    I think Arkansas is in the Sixth Circuit.

    Apparently, the prosecutor is very afraid Arkansas residents might favor the Second Amendment arguments . . .

    Wouldn't need the motion in San Fransissy federal court . . .
     

  3. Foul

    Foul New Member

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    We're getting closer and closer to a revolution every day with idiotic moves by the Feds like this.
     
  4. Malum Prohibitum

    Malum Prohibitum Moderator Staff Member

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    Wrong. It is the Eighth Circuit, and Fincher is so screwed.

    For example, in the Eighth Circuit (where this case will be heard), United States v. Hale, 978 F.2d 1016 (8th Cir. 1992) states, "Considering this history, we cannot conclude that the Second Amendment protects the individual possession of military weapons." This same decision is repeated in about five other Eighth Circuit cases. SCOTUS denied cert in every one of those cases. Defendant Hale was also in a "militia," so it is pretty much on point for the Eighth Circuit.
     
  5. Malum Prohibitum

    Malum Prohibitum Moderator Staff Member

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  6. Gunstar1

    Gunstar1 Administrator

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    Can't currently. I would have to install a mod to allow merging of topics.
     
  7. Gunstar1

    Gunstar1 Administrator

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  8. Malum Prohibitum

    Malum Prohibitum Moderator Staff Member

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    "And Fincher won't be able to argue whether the Commerce Clause to the U.S. Constitution as it relates to the guns applies to this case. The Commerce Clause gives the federal government power to regulate commerce with foreign countries and among the states. Hendren said the government doesn't have to prove the guns were involved in interstate commerce in order for Congress to be able to regulate them."



    And:
    "He remains in federal custody in lieu of $250,000 bond." That's a lot of money for a taxation and registration offense.



    I do not understand whether this means that you have plans to do so or do not have plans to do so.
     
  9. Gunstar1

    Gunstar1 Administrator

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    Don't really plan on it unless merging becomes a greater need.
     
  10. Foul

    Foul New Member

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    "The government argued it is the court's role, not the jury's, to decide matters of law and Fincher's arguments should not be made in the presence of the jury. Prosecutors argued the jury should only hear and decide the facts of the case, not what law should apply."

    Gotta call BS on that one.

    Jury Nullification, anyone? :twisted:
     
  11. Gunstar1

    Gunstar1 Administrator

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    Actually that is true. A judge is supposed to instruct the jury as to the law and the jury are supposed to see if the facts of the case meet the criteria the judge sets that was deemed the law says.

    If you believe the facts presented during the case meet what the judge deemed the law to say, and you still vote not guilty, then that is jury nullification. It doesn't matter if you are nullifying because of the punishment being too harsh or because you think the law is unconstitutional.
     
  12. Foul

    Foul New Member

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    “Those who make peaceful revolution impossible, make violent revolution inevitable.â€

    I have no interest in the judge's interpretation of the law.

    (An inevitable side effect of being an angry American.)
     
  13. Malum Prohibitum

    Malum Prohibitum Moderator Staff Member

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    http://www.nwaonline.net/articles/2007/ ... incher.txt

    [MP, all emphasis by way of bolding is mine]

    This article was published on Wednesday, January 10, 2007 11:49 PM CST in News
    By Ron Wood
    The Morning News

    Related Photos

    FAYETTEVILLE -- The trial of a Washington County man charged with having illegal machine guns is under way despite a series of fits and starts over what the defense can say in front of the jury.

    Hollis Wayne Fincher, 60, a lieutenant commander of the Militia of Washington County, is charged in federal court with possessing three homemade, unregistered machine guns and an unregistered sawed-off shotgun.

    After a half-dozen sidebars and a couple of sessions in chambers, U.S. District Judge Jimm Larry Hendren sent the jury home early Wednesday so he could again meet with lawyers to discuss what can and can't be presented to the jury.

    Before opening statements, Hendren ruled the defense can present evidence the machine guns and shotgun were necessary for a state militia. He also wants to hear any such evidence or arguments before they're presented to jurors to determine if such evidence is in line with established legal precedent so jurors will not be misled or confused about the law.

    Hendren said the courts have found there's no private right under the Second Amendment to keep a machine gun; the Second Amendment gives a collective, not individual, right to keep and bear arms; and, the Second Amendment is aimed at protecting state-sponsored militias.

    Membership in a loosely formed citizen militia is not protected, he said.

    The defense has based its case largely on a Second Amendment argument that the government can place limits on the possession of military weapons by individuals or groups but cannot prohibit the possession or use of any weapon that has any reasonable relationship to the "preservation or efficiency of a well-regulated militia."

    The sides have vastly different ideas of what constitutes a militia.

    Fincher's attorney, Oscar Stilley, argued Fincher has relied on being able to use the Second Amendment as a defense since the charges were filed. Stilley said he should be able to make constitutional arguments directly to the jury.

    Hendren said the defense will be allowed to make a sufficient record for appeal purposes but he won't allow arguments concerning various interpretations of the Second Amendment to be presented to jurors.

    Twelve jurors and two alternates were seated by midday Wednesday and opening statements were made in the early afternoon.

    During an opening statement interrupted several times for sidebar discussions about what he could and couldn't say, Stilley told jurors Fincher sent letters to state and federal officials in 2002 telling them he had the guns, that he thought they were legal because they were for use by the militia and asking them to inform him if they thought his position was wrong. Fincher didn't get a response and assumed he was not breaking the law, Stilley said.

    "Mr. Fincher has never denied that he kept machine guns," Stilley said. "Nobody told him that he can't have those guns."

    The government's first witness, Wade Vittitow, a special agent with the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco and Firearms, told jurors he started looking at Fincher in 2006, after a report about the militia group appeared in The Morning News.

    A check of the National Firearms Registry showed Fincher had not registered any guns, Vittitow said.

    A confidential informant was used to infiltrate the group and a subsequent search warrant netted up to 15 guns that should have been on the federal firearms registry, Vittitow said. Agents also found parts, templates for making parts for machine guns from scratch, belts of ammunition and a partly assembled submachine gun.

    Fincher was arrested Nov. 8 by federal agents. He remains in federal custody in lieu of $250,000 bond.
     
  14. Foul

    Foul New Member

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    Again I call BS.

    There was no "state sponsored" militia when the Bill of Rights was written.
     
  15. Rammstein

    Rammstein New Member

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    The BoR is collective for #2, but 1 and 3-10 are individual.

    Good, strong logic there.
     
  16. Wiley

    Wiley New Member

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    Too bad the trial won't be in Washington County, GA.


    CONSTITUTION OF GEORGIA
    (as amended through the November 1998 general election)

    ARTICLE I.
    BILL OF RIGHTS

    SECTION I.
    RIGHTS OF PERSONS

    Paragraph XI. Right to trial by jury; number of jurors; selection and compensation of jurors.
    (a) The right to trial by jury shall remain inviolate, except that the court shall render judgment without the verdict of a jury in all civil cases where no issuable defense is filed and where a jury is not demanded in writing by either party. In criminal cases, the defendant shall have a public and speedy trial by an impartial jury; and the jury shall be the judges of the law and the facts. [emphasis mine. Wiley]
     
  17. Malum Prohibitum

    Malum Prohibitum Moderator Staff Member

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    http://waronguns.blogspot.com/2007/01/j ... judge.html

    The Judge came in this morning and virtually reversed his ruling from yesterday. In addition to that, I distinctly heard him say (and the court record proves it) that the Second Amendment was an individual right in that he spoke about the Bill of Rights and stated that they were individual rights that were protected by the first 10 Amendments.

    This morning he totally reversed himself and stated that the 2nd Amendment conferred a collective right. Oscar argued with that and referenced the 2004 USDOJ paper and we also have an official copy of the 1982 Senate Subcommittee report that states that it is an individual right. However, the judge only accepts recent circuit court rulings and no other authority is sufficient for evidence or proof. Oscar argued that point strenuously and the Judge didn't seem to care.

    Right now, I sit at the defense table as I am assisting Oscar. It is also a good opportunity to visit with Wayne when the Judge demands that counsel meet him in chambers.

    You need to post that we actually live in the Land Down Under, and our courts reflect it.
    Mr. Davis adds he "will post the judge's ruling on the motion in Limine as soon as I have it and am able," and, of course, I'll link to that here.
     
  18. Malum Prohibitum

    Malum Prohibitum Moderator Staff Member

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    The Prosecution Rests

    That was quick! :shock:

     
  19. wwomack

    wwomack New Member

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    Now going to Jury.

    That was even quicker!