Brian Aitken's Mistake

A New Jersey man gets seven years for being a responsible gun owner.

Sue Aitken called the police because she was worried about her son, Brian. She now lives with the guilt of knowing that her phone call is the reason Brian spent his 27th birthday in a New Jersey prison last month. If the state gets its way, he will be there for the next seven years.

Aitken was sentenced in August after he was convicted of felony possession of a handgun. Before his arrest, Aitken, an entrepreneur and owner of a media consulting business, had no criminal record, and it appears he made a good-faith effort to comply with New Jersey's stringent gun laws. Even the jurors who convicted him seem to have been looking for a reason to acquit him. But the judge gave them little choice. Aitken's best hope now is executive clemency. He is petitioning New Jersey Gov. Chris Christie for a reprieve this week.

Aitken, born and raised in New Jersey, moved to Colorado several years ago. In Colorado he married his now ex-wife, also originally from New Jersey. The two had a son together. When the marriage dissolved, Atiken's wife and infant son moved back to New Jersey. Aitken eventually decided to move back as well in order to be closer to his son. Beginning in late 2008, he took the first of several trips between the two states, a back-and-forth process that involved selling his house in Colorado, moving his possessions across the country, and finding a job and a new place to live back east. Until he could find a new apartment, he stored his belongings at his parents' home in Burlington County.

In December 2008 Aitken made a final trip back to Colorado to collect the last of his possessions, including the three handguns he had legally purchased in Colorado—transactions that required him to pass a federal background check. Aitken and his friend Michael Torries had found an apartment in Hoboken, and Torries accompanied Aitken to Colorado to help with the last leg of the move. According to testimony Torries later gave at Aitken's trial, before leaving Colorado Aitken researched and printed out New Jersey and federal gun laws to be sure he moved his firearms legally. Richard Gilbert, Aitken's trial attorney, says Aitken also called the New Jersey State Police to get advice on how to legally transport his guns, although Burlington County Superior Court Judge James Morley didn't allow testimony about that phone call at Aitken's trial.

Aitken's legal troubles began in January 2009, when he drove to his parents' house to pick up some of his belongings. He had grown distraught over tensions with his ex-wife, who according to Aitken had been refusing to let him see his son. When Aitken visited his parents' house, his mother, Sue Aitken, grew worried about his mental state. In an interview with a New Jersey radio program last week, she said she works with children who have mental health problems, and she has always been taught to call police as a precaution when someone appears despondent and shows any sign that he might harm himself. Concerned about her son, she called 911 but then thought better of it and hung up the phone. The police responded anyway. When they arrived at her home, Sue Aitken told them her concerns about her son, and the police called Brian Aitken, who was then en route to Hoboken, on his cell phone. They asked him to turn around and come back to his parents' house. He complied.

It was there that the police confronted Aitken. Although they determined he wasn't a threat to himself or anyone else, they searched his car, where they found his handguns. They were locked, unloaded, and stored in the trunk, as federal and New Jersey law require for guns in transport. The police arrested Aitken anyway, charging him with unlawful possession of a weapon.

To buy a gun in New Jersey, you must go through a laborious process to obtain a "purchaser's permit." But that permit doesn't entitle you to possess a gun. A few select groups of people, mostly off-duty police officers and security personnel, can obtain carry permits. But anyone else with a gun is presumed to be violating state law and must defend against the charge of illegal gun possession by claiming one of the state's exemptions.

Evan Nappen, who is representing Aitken in his appeal, likens the process to claiming self-defense in a murder case. "If you kill someone because they're about to kill you first," he says, "you're still guilty of homicide. You have to prove you should be granted the exception for self-defense. It's the same thing for just about all New Jersey gun owners. You're guilty until you prove that you're innocent.”

The exemptions allow New Jersey residents to have guns in their homes, while hunting or at a shooting range, while traveling to or from hunting grounds or a shooting range, and when traveling between residences. Brian Aitken claimed he was moving between residences, and there is pretty strong evidence that he was. Sue Aitken testified that her son was moving his belongings from her house to his. So did Aitken's roommate. One of the police officers at the scene testified that Aitken's car was filled with personal belongings.

Yet Judge Morley wouldn't allow Aitken to claim the exemption for transporting guns between residences. He wouldn't even let the jury know about it. During deliberations, the jurors asked three times about exceptions to the law, which suggests they weren't comfortable convicting Aitken. Morley refused to answer them all three times. Gilbert and Nappen, Aitken's lawyers, say he also should have been protected by a federal law that forbids states from prosecuting gun owners who are transporting guns between residences. Morley would not let Aitken cite that provision either.

In response to a query about why Aitken wasn't granted the moving exception, the Burlington County Prosecutor's Office replied via email, "There was no evidence produced at the trial by the defendant that warranted such a defense." Gilbert says that isn't true. "We put on plenty of evidence that Brian was moving," he says, "including testimony from his mother, his roommate, even the police officer who arrested him."

In a telephone interview, Morley (who lost his job when Gov. Christie declined to reappoint him in June because of rulings in unrelated cases) says he didn't allow the jury to consider the moving exception because "it wasn't relevant." Echoing the prosecutor's office, Morley says: "There was no evidence that Mr. Aitken was moving. He was trying to argue that the law should give him this broad window extending over several weeks to justify driving around with guns in his car. There was also some evidence that Mr. Aitken wasn't moving at all when he was arrested, but had stored the guns in his car because his roommate was throwing a party, and he didn't want the guns in the apartment while guests were there drinking."

Gilbert and Nappen say the story about the party came not from Aitken, his parents, or his roommate but from a faulty police report. In any case, Nappen adds, it was not Morley's job to decide whether Aitken was moving. "That's a question of fact, not law, and questions of fact are supposed to be determined by the jury," he says. "The judge is supposed to instruct the jury on the law, and in this case he refused to let them even hear it. But besides that, for him to say there was no evidence presented that Brian was moving just isn't true."

Without the exception, the jury's job was easy. In New Jersey, possession of a firearm without a permit is a felony, punishable by a mandatory minimum sentence of five years in prison and a maximum of 10. Aitken was convicted and sentenced to seven.

"New Jersey gun laws are insane," Nappen says. "It makes a criminal of every gun owner and forces him to prove his innocence." Worse, in 2008 the New Jersey legislature and then-Gov. John Corzine changed the law to make the penalty for possessing a gun the same as the penalty for using it to commit a separate crime. That means someone like Aitken gets the same punishment as someone who assaults another person with a gun. In November 2008, New Jersey Attorney General Anne Milgram issued a directive (PDF) urging the state's prosecutors to apply the new law "vigorously," "strictly," and "uniformly."

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  • Realist||

    Where is the Republicans hero...Christie?

  • ||

    We will see. Of course when are the Democrats ever going to hold Dave Corzine responsible for passing such a horrible law? If you fascist mother fuckers hadn't passed such horrible laws, we wouldn't have to depend on Christie to fix the situation would we?

    Go fucking cry and pray whatever God you worship for forgiveness for supporting these people. And pray there is not a hell, because it is going to be awfully crowded down there if there is.

  • robc||

    We will see?

    A pardon the day after the conviction was the only fucking right thing to do.

    How fucking long does it take to sign a fucking piece of paper?

  • ||

    I don't know. But the article seems to say that the issue hasn't been decided yet. If Christie doesn't issue clemency, I will be the first one to say he needs his ass kicked. But it appears that it still may happen. I can't blame Christie for following the pardon procedure. But I will blame him if he doesn't give one. And regardless, Corzine and everyone who voted for this law needs to be shot.

  • Michael||

    Shot by someone who, despite the thicket of gun laws in that state, somehow obtained one anyway.

  • LarryA||

    IOW, any criminal.

  • robc||

    Clemency isnt good enough. Pardon.

  • d||

    Indeed. And an executive statement that he shouldn't be kept from his children because of this sham nonsense wouldn't be out of line either.

  • jacob||

    +1

  • Realist||

    Easy there, dick licker. I'm not a Republican or Democrat, but it's easy to see where your head is!

  • ||

    Concern troll is apparently concerned. Go troll somewhere else. And spare us the faux tough insults. "dick licker" For real? Are you ten? Would you say that to anyone in person? Doubtful.

  • Realist||

    This from some asshole named after a toilet!
    "For real?" You tell me do you lick'em for real or fun?

  • ||

    What if I did? You got something against homosexuals? I don't. Stop using your parents bandwidth.

  • The Gobbler||

    HELLO SHIT FACKTORY!

  • Larry Craig||

    What is it you gobble?

  • Miguel||

    penis. He gobbles penis. om nom nom!

  • Realist||

    You little fuck you started the insults?

  • ||

    WAAAAAA!!!!!

  • Realist||

    You really are a loser!

  • squirrel commander||

    behave, you two, or I'll shut down the comments.

  • ||

    I will slap you so hard!

    I will slap you harder!

  • ||

    Someone call the COMMANDER!!! If anyone can straighten this out......

  • ||

    New Jersey's gun laws are not just insane, they're quite blatantly unconstitutional. Aitken posed no threat to anyone, but he has been nevertheless been deprived of his liberty for exercising his right to keep and bear arms.

    -jcr

  • ||

    ""they're quite blatantly unconstitutional.""

    Sez who? Thanks to Heller, they probably are constitutional.

  • Amakudari||

    Well, there's what's constitutional and what the Supreme Court has decided is constitutional. Separate issues.

    I don't quite see how seven years in prison for having an unloaded, locked handgun in the trunk of your car jibes with the Second Amendment.

  • Bastiat||

    Justice was served because the proper "procedures" were followed.
    Another miscarriage of justice in the good old USSA.

  • Cyto||

    ^^this.

    The "procedures were followed" justification is routinely pulled out in these situations. You can hear that the judge has no qualms about branding an innocent man a criminal and depriving him of freedom as long as he has a legal argument he can use to justify it.

    Asshole.

  • Fiscal Meth||

    And like that, a NJ DA gets reelected for being tough on crime.

  • ||

    Yep, and who's fault is that?

  • Fiscal Meth||

    The Situation?

  • ||

    Justice was served because the proper "procedures" were followed.
    Another miscarriage of justice in the good old USSA.

    Many confuse the legal system in the United States with a justice system. People are even known to call our legal system a justice system. They are wrong. Legal and justice are not synonyms and in most (all?) of the world the former system prevails.

    Fuck, I sound like a goddam hippie. ;-)

  • Mr Whipple||

    Got patchouli?

  • ||

    "When plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men living together in society, they create for themselves in the course of time a legal system that authorizes it and a moral code that justifies it."

  • ||

    You know, "tough on crime" isn't always just "tough on crime." Often, it's "tough on justice."

  • ||

    We don't vote for district attorneys in NJ. Which may be fortunate or unfortunate, depending on the circumstances. In this case, the fucker will still keep his job forever. The other side is the Duke lacrosse players - victims of a bastard who was stumping for the "tough on crime" vote, but at least they would have been able to vote his ass out next time around.

  • ||

    The only decent thing to do if the sentence is not pardoned would be to blow that scumbag judge away and as many of the assholes whom support that stupid law.
    Sooner or later enough people will realize that they have a right to vote and a right to protest unfairness. They also evidently have the right to be completely ignored and stomped on at every opportunity. So pretty soon too many people will realize they are complaining all the way to a cattle car and protesting all the way to the gallows.
    This is what the government fears most that realization that is coming to the population. Less than one fifth of the population participated in the revolution. That is why there is a full court press to oppress all of our rights and freedoms. They think they are smarter than their predecessors, they are denying what history has tried to teach.

  • ||

    Doesn't this violate Macdonald?

  • Corduroy||

    Where do you even start with crap like this? It's so over the top, that it's almost hard to believe.

  • Extended Warren T||

    Ow! My balls!

    Thanks Rads, my testicles were getting a bit complacent over the weekend.

  • Old Mexican||

    Even the jurors who convicted him seem to have been looking for a reason to acquit him. But the judge gave them little choice.

    Excuse me? Is that supposed to be their excuse or your excuse for their decision, Radley? What, did the judge say "you better find the guy guilty or else"?

  • robc||

    Not one single juror was familiar with jury nullification? I guess that makes Tulpa happy.

  • ||

    We are increasingly unworthy of our freedom. I am as big of a company man as there should be. And I would have told the court and the judge to fuck off. I would never have voted to convict this guy.

  • Michael||

    Apparently, the State sniffs out during voir dire any potential juror who believes in nullification. Same as defense attorneys objecting to any potential juror who believes in rules and objective truth.

  • ||

    It shouldn't be so easy to find 12 people who would buy this bullshit.

  • Fiscal Meth||

    I live in LA. I'll find you millions.

  • ||

    You are in my prayers...

  • Jen||

    Clearly, you have never been to our state. There are many more than 12 people like that in New Jersey.

  • ||

    It's quite simple say the words Jury Nullification during voir dire, and when people see you are dismissed for using these magical words, more people will invoke them. If enough people invoke these words during voir dire, the system will grind to a halt because there will not be enough people to man the juries.

  • ||

    No, what actually happens is that honest, hard-working citizens who would be good jurors, tend to get out of jury duty for any of 10,000 reasons because of the perceived inconvenience.

    The only people left who server on juries are the ones who don't have anything better to do that day. Fucking dregs of society.

  • ||

    You hit it on the head!

  • ||

    ""We are increasingly unworthy of our freedom. ""

    No shit. I really hate to say it too. We are the cause of our problems. But that's easy to ignore when you can blame it on government or a political party instead.

  • Godot||

    Were are the ones we have been waiting for

  • zoltan||

    Who is this we you're talking about?

  • ||

    The people our parents warned us about, that's who...

  • ||

    Remember, we get the government they deserve.

  • CrackertyAssCracker||

    Nice jab. I forgot about that ridiculous position of his.

  • SIV||

    Not one single juror was familiar with jury nullification?

    If only there was a prominent controversial political figure known for her support of jury rights...

  • ||

    It really is distressing that none of the jurors stopped and asked themselves, "why the hell is this guy on trial?" and held out for a hung jury. They don't even have to know the term "jury nullification" to hold out for a hung jury. Just keep repeating "he didn't do anything wrong" until the rest of the jurors give up.

  • ||

    Something tells me you'd be hard pressed to find anybody on a jury not looking at the clock every 5 minutes. Beer thirty beats out justice 10 times out of 10.

  • Old Mexican||

    "Yet Judge Morley wouldn't allow Aitken to claim the exemption for transporting guns between residences. He wouldn't even let the jury know about it. During deliberations, the jurors asked three times about exceptions to the law, which suggests they weren't comfortable convicting Aitken.

    Which makes their decision to convict even more damning. If jurors are not being given all the information they need to make a decision, then the decision should be clear: A big fat "FUCK YOU" to the prosecution and judge. That's what people with a sliver of decency still attached to thier souls would do.

  • Michael||

    My guess is Morley would vacate the jury's verdict and impose his own.

  • robc||

    He cant vacate innocent to guilty.

  • d||

    Yep. Thank god for that rock-solid principle of the common law.

  • CrackertyAssCracker||

    I'm going to remember that. As a juror, if I'm not given enough information, then I make a factual determination that I've got reasonable doubt. Or that some part of the government team is probably lying or misleading me.

  • ||

    Exactly. If a judge refuses to answer questions submitted by the jury regarding points of law, or if he sequesters the jury, you have a responsibility to assume that he's hiding something exculpatory.

  • mad libertarian guy||

    It's much simpler than that. No matter the circumstances you should assume that some government dick choker is holding something from you and vote "not guilty".

  • ||

    Still way too much sheep. Baaaa!

    Listen, you should assume that the government is holding out on you. It's in their interest, okay? The DA knows the judge; they probably golf together. Most judges are former prosecutors -- ever hear of a defense lawyer being appointed judge? It doesn't happen.

    So ALWAYS assume the government is holding out on you, and vote to convict ONLY IF that doesn't matter -- if what you already know is sufficiently weighty that almost anything they might be hiding from you wouldn't matter anyway.

    You can assume they haven't directly lied to you, fortunately. That's pretty damn rare. But assume they'll spin things, they'll not mention stuff, and they'll squash a bunch of stuff the defense wants said. If even after all that you still think the guy's guilty, if the government has proven its case beyond any reasonable doubt, then let fly. Not otherwise.

  • cynical||

    But how would you know that you didn't have all the information? If the judge straight up lies to you and says there are no exceptions, then you think you have all the information, shitty though it may be.

  • Old Mexican||

    Re: cynical,

    But how would you know that you didn't have all the information?

    Very easy. In this case, for instance, if after three requests for a description of exceptions to the law you get squat (not even a "go fuck yourself"), then the judge IS hiding something. If the judge lies and says "there are none," then your B.S. meter should turn to RED as there are ALWAYS exceptions to a law.

    I wonder what would prosecutors do if the American people were taught How To Be A Juror and nullification... They would probably cry for the creation of kangaroo courts "in the name of justice."

  • ||

    First of all, the judge isn't going to lie to you, he's just going to evade the question. If you ask "are there any exceptions?" and he says "that's not relevant" or "excuse me I have to go potty" then he hasn't lied to you -- and that's what he'll do if he doesn't want to answer your question.

    Secondly, you're not understanding the way the system is supposed to work. It's not your problem to decide whether you have all the information. It's up to the government to prove that fact to you, to your satisfaction.

    If you aren't convinced that you've been given all the relevant information, you have a very simple option: vote to acquit. Problem solved!

    Keep in mind your role as a juryman. It is not to ensure that the guilty get punished. That's the job of the government, and it is given enormous powers to get the job done. (If you don't feel it's getting the job done, your correct recourse is the ballot box: vote in somebody else to give it a shot.)

    Your job, in the jury box, is first and foremost to ensure that no injustice is done -- that the enormous apparatus of the state is not used to railroad an innocent man, or (as here) make a mockery of justice by screwing over someone on an absurd technicality. Your duty as a citizen is to vote no whenever the government fails to prove its case beyond any reasonable doubt.

  • Fiscal Meth||

    He was talking about the judge's suppression of evidence. The jury didn't get the whole story.

  • This Dave||

    If the judge lies, or lies by deliberate omission, about the law to his jury, is that not a crime?

  • Joe M||

    [Burlington County Superior Court Judge James Morley said] "...There was also some evidence that Mr. Aitken wasn't moving at all when he was arrested, but had stored the guns in his car because his roommate was throwing a party, and he didn't want the guns in the apartment while guests were there drinking."

    Nice. His responsible behavior is yet more damning evidence against him.

  • Virginia||

    Morley... lost his job when Gov. Christie declined to reappoint him in June

    good. fuck that piece of shit.

  • Matrix||

    He should have pled "Not guilty by reason of insanity" because NJ's gun laws are INSANE!

  • 8||

    Breyer, Kagan, Ginsberg, & Sotomayor will vote to keep this guy in jail.

  • ||

    The "legal" system is such a farce. The judge systematically shut out any evidence that would undermine the state's case.

    But, gee, we wouldn't have fair legal proceedings if the state didn't run them. Heh.

  • ||

    That can be taken up on appeal. If the guy can afford it.

  • sarcasmic||

    Someone start a collection.
    I'll contribute five bucks.

  • Jenna||

    Hey Sarcasmic,

    Brian does have a donation set up for appeal funds---please help him and donate here: https://www.paypal.com/us/cgi-bin/webscr?cmd=_flow&SESSION=oJ6gfhzcOzzueZq12Zld_BDP5LfAQ4SdEhANawdHodd2h0qdIsOa-KZ1i3e&dispatch=5885d80a13c0db1f8e263663d3faee8d9384d85353843a619606282818e091d0

    You can also get to that link by clicking on the Piggy Bank on briandaitken.com

  • Adam||

    I just donated ten bucks... good luck.

  • ||

    No suprise. Most judges are former prosecutors and are pro prosecution. No judge ever lost an election for being "tough on crime."

  • Zeb||

    It sounds like judges are not elected in NJ (the article says he was not re-appointed).

  • Pip||

    "No suprise. Most judges are former prosecutors and are pro prosecution. No judge ever lost an election for being "tough on crime Liberty."

  • ||

    "There was no evidence that Mr. Aitken was moving."

    Hmmmm...where is that bunch that is always going on about 'reality based...'

  • ||

    Reality based and concerned about our civil rights. Don't forget the civil rights part.

  • Heh||

    Okay, so as long as the law is phrased that X is illegal but Y and Z are exceptions, I have to prove Y or Z instead of them having to prove not Y or Z and that's okay with you.

  • ||

    You don't want to get caught with even a BB gun in New Germany...er...New Jersey.

  • Mr Whipple||

    When I was a kid, I wanted a CO2 pellet gun. My Father didn't want to go through the bullshit of getting a handgun permit.

    Yeah, you need a handgun permit for fucking pellet gun.

    "You'll shoot your eye out, kid".

  • mad libertarian guy||

    For all of the nanny state morality based bullshit my commonwealth of Kentucky has, at least we are pro fucking freedom when it comes to firearms.

  • ||

    Nazi Jersey

  • ||

    Better yet, don't go to the fucking place.

  • Colonel_Angus||

    +1

  • ||

    I would say "stay away from all blue states" is a good general rule. Seriously, drive around them whenever possible.

  • ||

    Oh, come off it, wanker. I've done plenty of traveling, and while all areas have their quirks, so-called "red states" and highly conservative areas have just as many problems, and have had much worse in recent history. I have run across more problems from over-aggressive local despots in conservative areas than I have from nanny-state over-legislating.

    Small-town racist cops, ridiculously conservative ordinances, fear of outsiders, and hey, how about those unconstitutional seizure laws that cops in Texas and some other "red states" are so fond of? Driving with cash while black? No, sir!

    I guess red state traveling is fine as long as you're a straight, white, christian conservative who doesn't carry cash, then you won't be jailed on false charges, robbed blind, lynched, or run out of town by the "good old boys." Better to avoid red states entirely, obviously.

    If you don't like my hasty generalizations, maybe you shouldn't do it either, you ignorant dipshit.

  • Edwin||

    indeed, the more I read and live the more I suspect that the above poster's explanation of the situation is the case. While we have our problems here in the tri state area, like this article, it's mostly pretty nice - and cops are NOT always to be feared.

  • ||

    I left the tri-state shit hole over 20 years ago, and have no regrets whatsoever. You can keep it, there are much better places to live in (and out of) this country!

  • That_Guy123||

    Its not a red / blue state debate for me. If I disagree with a states gun laws then I do not travel to or through that state. I also will not purchase goods or services either sold or manufactured in that state, because it then sends tax dollars to the coffers of a government that restricts its citizens rights. I'll have no part of that.

  • omg||

    Putting Brian Aitken in prison isn't going to make New Jersey any safer. It might, however, make some of the state's residents think twice before calling the police, particularly if they own guns

    This is a bad thing? There are very few situations I can think of where calling the police isn't the absolute worst thing you can do.

    It might even make some New Jersey gun owners wonder if they have more to fear from the state's ridiculous laws and overly aggressive cops and prosecutors than they do from criminals.

    Sometimes I wonder if the sky is blue...

  • Jen||

    Sometimes I wonder if the sky is blue...

    It is orange here in New Jersey.

  • SIGP226||

    "Never invite 'The Man' into your life."

    Learn it. Live it.

  • sounds real good||

    Seriously. Only call them if you witness a crime or are a victim. Distraught loved ones seem to wind up dead or in prison if you call the cops for their "protection."

  • ||

    Thanks to MAMA for being a brainwashed twit who needed to call the cops because her son was behaving like a real person. Her "parenting skills" suck.

  • johnl||

    If she wanted to ruin her son's life why didn't she just shoot him and save the taxpayers some money?

  • ||

    But..."If Woody had gone to the police, none of this would have happened!"

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Bunco_Busters

  • Abdul||

    I've driven through Jersey with my gun in the trunk before while moving between residences, and then stopped off to visit my sister who lives in Ocean City while on the way.

    Good thing she doesn't know she could have put me away for 7 years.

  • ||

    Unfortunatley, McClure/Volkmer does not protect residents from transportation of firearms INTRASTATE, just INTERSTATE. Federal law may not apply here. Aiken was clearly a NJ resident and transporting the firearms intrastate between residencies.

    At any rate, NJ (like my home state of NY) does not lawfully recognize transportation of HANDGUNS (due to bureauctatically draconian and riduculous regulations)in accordance with the Act. This little factoid is recognized in the firearms community; you do NOT want to get on a flight that stops at JFK or LaGuardia as a baggage search that may turn up your legally owned and transported handgun will subject you to the provision of NYS Criminal Law that makes unlicensed and unregistered handgun possession an automatic Class D felony.

    Although I normally support State rights as a Constitutionalist; when it comes to Second Ammendment issues, I am wholly inclined to allow for Federal preemption of State laws. Especially in the new Criminal Cuomo/Socialist Schneidermann administration here in NYS.

    For the Record, I support a vindication of Aiken and no jail time.

  • ||

    ""you do NOT want to get on a flight that stops at JFK or LaGuardia as a baggage search that may turn up your legally owned and transported handgun will subject you to the provision of NYS Criminal Law that makes unlicensed and unregistered handgun possession an automatic Class D felony.""

    One of H&R's regulars ran afoul of that one. Come to think about it, he hasn't been on here in a while. Kwais? I think.

  • ||

    Your memory is fine, It was Kwais. I'm too lazy to go hunting it down but it had its own topic/thread/posting here at H&R.

  • ||

    Here's what I found.

    http://reason.com/blog/2009/01/23/nyc-jailhouse-blues

    But the link to the memoir hits a 404 error.

  • ||

  • Old Mexican||

    Sue Aitken called the police because she was worried about her son, Brian. She now lives with the guilt of knowing that her phone call is the reason Brian spent his 27th birthday in a New Jersey prison last month. If the state gets its way, he will be there for the next seven years.

    Never ever call the police under an expectation of receiving help. You WON'T.

  • ||

    Im an attorney and I always advise people to call 911 as a LAST RESORT. If you do so all bets are off. Anyone there could get beaten, tazed, shot, or arrested.

  • Colonel_Angus||

    I like how arrested is last on your list. You're lucky if you just get arrested.

  • ||

    I'd rather be tazed or beaten than get arrested and rot in jail in a guilty-til-innocent situation like this.

    You know, jail, where some dude *did* illegally have a gun and wasn't bothered by using it to obtain some cash?

  • Ted S.||

    "Or"? I think you mean "and".

  • JoshINHB||

    There was a case in Riverside CA several years ago where a family member called 911 because a woman was passed out in a locked car.

    The cops shot her dead because "they feared for their lives". She was unarmed and unconscious the whole time.

  • Ron||

    You can't be to careful she might be a zombie.

  • ||

    I lived in San Bernardino County (Right next door) when this happened. Take the following with a grain of skepticism. They claimed they saw a gun in her lap and she was grabbing it when they woke her.

  • Billy Shakespeare||

    Maybe they thought she was a dog.

  • krystalcane||

    th best thing is the cops never got busted. NEVER talk to a cop EVER too bad this poor woman never even had that.

  • sounds real good||

    Yup, I remember it too. Was she at a gas station?

  • ||

    Aaaaaahhh the Monday Balko Nut Punch always hits the spot. Now to go walk this off, gingerly.

  • Cyto||

    I'm also surprised that the search wasn't tossed. Unless he gave consent that is... What exact justification did they have for searching the vehicle? "Because we were already interacting with the individual?"

    I really feel for this guy. His ex-wife is giving him grief about seeing his children, then his mom calls the cops on him, then he's thrown to a prosecutor/judge duo hell-bent on putting him in jail, regardless of the evidence (and for no discernible reason other than "because we can"). If he wasn't about to go 'postal' and rack up a body count, he probably is now...

    Actually, if this set of facts was presented in a story about Iran or China, we'd get all human-rights indignant and offer him political prisoner status and asylum. I wonder if Colorado can offer him asylum?

  • omg||

    You have to be rather specific in what you say and do with cops if you don't want them to search your car, I think. They seem to be awfully good at sweet-talking you or "AHM GUNNA PUT YOU IN JAIL BECAUSE AH AM THE LAWR"ing you into searching your car.

  • ||

    Or the cops can just lie and say you consented when you in fact did not. Your word against theirs.

  • Kristen||

    Hence the need for citizens to record police encounters, and why police don't want you to record.

  • Kristen||

    (I meant on video)

  • IANAL||

    When you don't consent to a search the first thing they usually do is bring out the dog. That's going to be hard to lie about later, since it usually means calling in another unit.

    Now, if you are carrying drugs, you are screwed at this point, regardless of whether the dog actually signals the presence of drugs.

    But if they find something else and no drugs they have the choice between saying their dog screwed up or admitting it was an illegal search. They will probably just give you a 'warning' and send you on your way unless it's something really serious like a corpse in your trunk.

    In this case, the guy probably told them about the guns and so they had reasonable cause - they didn't need his consent.

  • Mr Whipple||

    I can tell you from personal experience, NJSP do not call the dogs for a simple traffic stop. They may threaten you with it, but they never go through with it. They'll impound your car, first. That way they get a kickback from the towing company.

  • Barely Suppressed Rage||

    I know for an absolute fact that the NJ State Troopers, when they want to search your car, will hand you form and say something to the effect of, "OK, this says that we stopped you and then let you go, so if you just sign this you can be on your way," when in reality what you're signing is a consent for them to search. You sign it, thinking you're about to hop in your car and drive off, and as soon as you dot that last "i" or cross that last "t", they say "thank you very much," grab your ass, put you in the back of their car and then proceed to tear your car apart.

    I know this not through bad personal experience, but I do know it to be completely true. It's a "technique" they use on people they feel sure are carrying drugs or guns through the state - there is a lot of gun and drug traffic going through NJ on the various interstates.

  • Mr Whipple||

    Never had that one happen to me.

  • Paul||

    I'm also surprised that the search wasn't tossed. Unless he gave consent that is...

    He probably did. Most law abiding people often do consent to searches. They think they have nothing to hide.

    Unfortunately, due to the creeping police state, we often find everyone has something to hide.

  • ||

    Someone should examine all gun law convictions in that [former] judge's court. How many other Aikens are rotting in jail?

  • Wind Rider||

    Which indicates that the Fat Man has already taken a good first step, in "declining" to re-appoint the asshole. Shouldn't be too much of a stretch to see him pardoning Aiken completely. He may be waiting to see if Aiken's attorneys file the flood of appeals that seem to be in store for the suppression of exculpatory evidence/circumstance.

  • ||

    That is likely. Christie is not likely to take the extraordinary step of pardoning the guy before his appeals have failed, because that gives the justice system a chance to fix itself.

    As unjust as this case is, it's not a good idea for the governor to go reaching down to twiddle the outcome in cases before the system has a chance to deal with it. That's a route to chaos.

    What that means, practically speaking, is that the guy is (1) going to spend at least a year or two in the pokey, probably, unless he can get an appeals judge to free him pending appeal, and (2) he's going to need a LOT of money, like $500,000, and (3) he's definitely going to lose custody of his children, very likely forever, because right now he's a felon, and later on they will have become "attached" to mama and be used to not seeing him (or at least this is what her lawyer will argue, successfully).

    Of all of those, it sounds like (3) is going to be hardest on him.

  • Barely Suppressed Rage||

    Yet another of many reasons I am so glad I left that fucking place.

    I was born in NJ and spent my childhood, adolescence and early adulthood there, but I certainly don't consider it "home."

    As Page Wilson sings, home will always be Virginia.

  • Warty||

    I was in New Jersey last weekend. What a horrible place.

  • ||

    Sure Warty, if you manage to skip all the nice towns and restaurants, NJ is a horrible place.

  • Wind Rider||

    "Nice towns and restaurants" - oh yeah, which exits are those off of?

    I've just passed through, and my biggest impression is that the state doesn't even trust it's citizens to be able to put gas in their own damned cars. People looked at me like I was some sort of freak cause I had to get out and show the probably homeless guy they had at the state-sanctioned Turnpike Fuel monopoly stops how to open the damned hood to check the freakin oil, and slightly on the verge of panic when I insisted on checking it and topping the oil myself.

    No wonder Christie is such a savior to these schmucks. The man with three brain cells is king in the land of the brain dead.

  • ||

    Oregon has the same stupid law. I have had to tell more than one gas monkey that if they continue to lean on my car while it's being filled, I will hurt them.

  • Mr Whipple||

    "Nice towns and restaurants" - oh yeah, which exits are those off of?

    Exits 1-4.

  • MKEgal||

    "the state doesn't even trust its citizens to be able to put gas in their own cars"
    Ride a motorcycle. Very few gas monkeys want to bother with them.

  • ||

    Normally, I'd tell a few New Jersey jokes at this point, but quite frankly, the whole place is a fucking joke! I'm glad I left a long time ago.

  • Tharms||

    New Jersey is an excellent place. It provides refuge and opportunity for all those who find New York to be too lawful and orderly.

  • Woodrow Hyacinth-Smith||

    Better 100 innocents go to jail than 1 guilty person go free

  • robc||

    The Tulpa-patented anti-nullification argument.

  • Warty||

    Not smug enough for Tulpa.

  • hehe||

    Or witty enough. (I know YOU can't give him credit, Warty, but the man does have wit.)

  • ||

    As a former Prison Guard I would say your comment qualifies you to be an absolute ass...

  • TexLaw||

    Free law advice: do not call the police before you call a lawyer. Except in the direst of emergencies, the police are far more likely to arrest you than deal with whatever you are complaining about.

  • ||

    There is also a risk when people call for an ambulance. If it seems remotely possible that drugs are involved in a medical emergency, the police often tag along right behind the EMT's and take a look around the house.

  • Kristen||

    I called 911 for a medical emergency a couple years ago. When the EMTs were in my house I realized there was a very recognizable (though empty) piece of paraphernalia on my end table. I am DAMN lucky the EMTs didn't call in the motherfuckin cops at that point. But I had never had to call 911 before and I was a little freaked out by the situation (boyfriend had a seizure) and never thought to hide the goods. I won't make that mistake again.

  • Jen||

    I wouldn't call that lucky. As an EMT, I can tell you that no EMT gives enough of a shit about your pot to call the cops over it. Just the opposite, in fact: since it's part of our job to figure out what medications (prescription and recreational) you've been on and report them to the hospital in case they're relevant to your current condition, it's in our best interest to earn your trust, and that includes not talking to cops about that stuff.

    However, you ARE very lucky the cops didn't show up first. In most NJ towns I know, the cops are the first to respond, in case the situation ends up being dangerous for unarmed EMTs (because a lot of criminal assaults/domestic disputes/other assorted bad shit gets called in as "unknown medical").

  • Mr Whipple||

    Yes. Usually the cops do show up first, even in Haddonfield. The crew I was working with started a small fire on the house. The Boss called 9-1-1 and a cop showed up first. Then 3 fire trucks, two ambulances and a half dozen other cops from neighboring towns. We actually had the fire out before they showed up, but there was so much smoke, we weren't sure if it was completely out. The firemen kicked in the front door, even though we had a key, and smashed three windows. The one fireman smashed the glass in the window, and then lifted it open.

  • Jen||

    Don't even get me started on firemen. That sounds about right!

  • jacob||

    AMEN. I was subpeonaed (sic) to testify on behalf of a kid who was arrested after he had a seizure in his living room. The kid's roommmate told EMS that the two had tried heroin recently. The kid was arrested. The UDS from the hospital was completely clean. The prosecutor threw out the case before we even set foot in the courtroom after he talked to me for about 30 seconds about the facts.

  • Ayatollah Usoe||

    The NJ voir dire asks "will you decide the facts as your hear them, and apply the law as I instruct?" The judge literally asks potential jurors if they are okay with delegating their role to him. One of the reasons I never get impaneled.

  • CrackertyAssCracker||

    Reasonable doubt is up to you. And I think it is reasonable to vary the reasonable-ness level required for a vote to sanction state force as a function of wether or not some third party was actually harmed. If somebody was actually harmed, it might be reasonable to require a probability of 99.85% that the accused is actually guilty. If nobody else was harmed, then I mght require, say, 99.999999999999999% (add as many nines as you think reasonable) for a vote to use state force. This will usually mean that you can't vote to convict because their might be a conspiracy between the judge, the prosecutor, and all the cops, and all the evidence was fake or planted.

    So don't answer no to that voir dire question, unless you just don't want to be on the jury.

  • Dave||

    The government lies to us all the time. Why shouldn't we lie to it?

    Just don't get caught.

  • Robert||

    Since they have no right to an honest answer from you, lie at will.

  • ||

    Land of the free

  • ||

    ....where the "home of the brave" is vacant.

  • Colonel_Angus||

    Fuck the judge, fuck the jury, fuck the cops, and fuck his mother.

    "she said she works with children who have mental health problems, and she has always been taught to call police as a precaution when someone appears despondent and shows any sign that he might harm himself"

    Whatabitch.

  • ||

    "Always taught."

    Notice the absence of "free thought."

    I could expand this to the liberal mind set being easily manipulated but I won't.

    For now, I wish and hope a harsher justice awaits all the assholes involved in putting this lad away.

    It's sad to think how many people are languishing in jail for petty crimes. Meanwhile, judges and prosecutors are high fiving each other screaming, "America, FUCK YEAH!"

  • ||

    Cookie cutter approach to what is a complex topic. "I always call the police" or "I always call child protective services" is a sign you are dealing with someone who has never learned to critically evaluate a situation.

  • officer_parasite||

    He is not one of the bureaucratic elite. As such he should be subject to arbitrary laws, which prejudicially favor the elite's interests. The middle-class are slaves here and and are honored to serve the sloth of the elite.

  • Drax the Destroyer||

    Urge to Kill...RISING!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Quiet Desperation||

    But the judge gave them little choice.

    I'm sick of that bullshit excuse. You are the jury. The verdict is *yours* to make. Despite the denial of key evidence, you *still* wanted to acquit. If you don't feel right convicting him, DON'T CONVICT. That is your whole purpose for existing as a jury! Fuck! SHEEP SHEEP SHEEP! Maybe the verdict would not stand or be overturned- I don't know as I'm blessedly not a lawyer- but at least the jury would have done the right thing.

  • ||

    How can an acquittal be overturned?

  • QuietDesperation||

    Said I wasn't a lawyer, Sparky. Can't judges invalidate a verdict they think is not fitting the precious rules?

  • Fat Crack Ho||

    Neither am I, sport, but that's one of the basics: a jury has an "unreviewable and irreversible power" to acquit, even in contravention to the judge's instructions. If the judge could simply toss a verdict he didn't agree with, then what the hell would be the purpose of a jury anyway? It's this sort of ignorance that results in convictions like Aitken's.

  • Quiet Desperation||

    Well, that was *my* point in the first place.

    I know I've heard of cases where a judge somehow changed or invalidated a jury verdict. I'd Google it, but, honestly, Google really sucks these days. We need a new search engine.

  • ||

    The judge can vacate a guilty verdict and, for example, order a new trial.

    But once you're acquitted by a jury, that's it, forever. No one can second-guess that decision. Fifth Amendment.

  • Kristen||

    Not to mention that it doesn't need to be the whole jury - just one juror. Although in that case the prosecution can re-try the case. Not ideal, but at least it would have given him another year or two out of the slammer.

  • Colonel_Angus||

    No, another year or two in jail while he waits.

  • ||

    Many people respect the authority of the court, also based on the "voir dire" you might be subject to perjury.

  • QuietDesperation||

    This is why I'm not a lawyer. I give the verdict I honestly think is correct and I can be punished? I'm sorry, but I refuse to suffer the repeated head trauma required for that to ever make sense.

  • Fat Crack Ho||

    The court doens't have the authority to tell jurors that they're there solely to judge the facts of the case, and that interpretation of the law is the exclusive province of the court. But they do it anyway.

  • ||

    Many people respect the authority of the court, also based on the "voir dire" you might be subject to perjury.

  • ||

    "Even the jurors who convicted him seem to have been looking for a reason to acquit him. But the judge gave them little choice."

    I think this is maybe the saddest part of all.

  • prolefeed||

    Jurors are not bound by the presiding judge's declarations. Jurors are literally judges of the facts and the law, and can acquit anyone regardless of what the OTHER judge in the black robe says.

  • Barely Suppressed Rage||

    Um. Not quite. Jurors are the trier of fact; the judge is the arbiter of law. Jurors are supposed to apply the law as the judge explains the law to them. I.e., the judge tells the jurors what the applicable law is and what it means; the jurors have to decide whether the facts demonstrate that the accused did, in fact, commit the acts that constitute a violation of that law.

    The jurors are not supposed to decide on their own what they think the law means; they are instructed as to the applicable law and its meaning. Jurors decide what the actual facts are - i.e., what happened - and whether those facts constitute an illegal situation.

    Which is why jury nullification tends to be a tendentious issue - the jury finds that the facts do, in fact, constitute a violation of the law as it has been explained to them, but refuse to convict anyhow, because they believe the law is wrong as applied to that case. Which is why critics of the notion deride it as the jurors "taking the law into their own hands."

  • CatoTheElder||

    There's nothing wrong with "taking the law into their own hands" if the law itself should be strangled.

  • prolefeed||

    Link needed.

    Show me where in the Constitution it says "Jurors must ignore the Constitution or their conscience or their understanding of what is a just law if a government employee wearing a robe says to do so."

    Google "jury nullification" for abundant links refuting your claim.

    Various state constitutions explicitly contradict you.

    A sample from http://www.fija.org/docs/JG_st.....ation.pdf:

    "ALL CRIMINAL CASES
    The constitutions of Maryland, Indiana, Oregon, and Georgia currently have provisions guaranteeing the
    right of jurors to “judge” or “determine” the law in “all criminal cases.”
    Article 23 of Maryland’s Constitution states:
    In the trial of all criminal cases, the Jury shall be the Judges of Law, as well as of fact, except that the
    Court may pass upon the sufficiency of the evidence to sustain a conviction. The right of trial by Jury
    of all issues of fact in civil proceedings in the several Courts of Law in this State, where the amount in
    controversy exceeds the sum of five thousand dollars, shall be inviolably preserved.
    Art. 1, Sec. 19, of Indiana’s Constitution says:
    In all criminal cases whatever, the jury shall have the right to determine the law and the facts.
    Oregon’s Constitution, Art. 1, Sec. 16, states:
    Excessive bail shall not be required, nor excessive fines imposed. Cruel and unusual punishments shall
    not be inflicted, but all penalties shall be proportioned to the offense. In all criminal cases whatever, the
    jury shall have the right to determine the law, and the facts under the direction of the Court as to the law,
    and the right of new trial, as in civil cases.
    Art. 1, Sec. 1 of Georgia’s Constitution says:
    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 judges of the law and the facts.
    These constitutional jury nullification provisions endure despite decades of hostile judicial
    interpretation.
    LIBEL CASES
    Twenty other states currently include jury nullification provisions in their constitutions under their
    sections on freedom of speech, specifically with respect to libel cases. These provisions, listed below,
    typically state:
    .... in all indictments for libel, the jury shall have the right to determine the law and the facts under the
    direction of the court."

  • Barely Suppressed Rage||

    Show me where in the Constitution it says "Jurors must ignore the Constitution or their conscience or their understanding of what is a just law if a government employee wearing a robe says to do so."

    Show me where I state or even implied that to be the case.

  • mad libertarian guy||

    If being a juror requires judicial explanation of the law, you're doing it wrong.

  • Dave||

    Jury Nullification is the WHOLE POINT of the right to trial by jury. Look up the history, you'll be surprised.

  • Colonel_Angus||

    I nominate the gun laws of the shitty state of New Jersey for the next constitutional verification in the Supreme Court. The NRA, GOA, SAF, and IJ should be all over this.

  • Barely Suppressed Rage||

    NJ's gun laws are way up there among the most draconian in the country. They're about the worst, I'd guess, depending on how you'd like to quantify it.

    Again, only one in a long list of reasons why I'm glad to have left the place for a land that does a much better job of recognizing individual liberties - although with the invasion from NoVa and a lot of liberal Yankees moving down here, it does appear VA is sliding gradually towards the blue end of the spectrum.

  • Kristen||

    You sure about that BSR? Virginia (where I live also, BTW), has probably the most restrictive law for gays in the country. In a 2004 amendment to the ridiculous Affirmation of Marriage Act, the Commonwealth made it more difficult for gay couples to use such things as power of attorney, medical decisions, child custody, etc. And don't forget where Sal Culosi was murdered.

  • Fletch||

    In a 2004 amendment to the ridiculous Affirmation of Marriage Act, the Commonwealth made it more difficult for gay couples to use such things as power of attorney, medical decisions, child custody, etc.

    How does the State know they're gay?

  • Kristen||

    Exactly....my question was: if I want to enter into a Power of Attorney with one of my female friends, would I have to prove we weren't a gauy couple? Ridiculous.

  • d||

    Although unfortunate, these are all minor legal inconveniences compared with losing your freedom for being a responsible gun owner. The reason that gay couples have issues with child custody, e.g., is that they are never both biological parents (unlike the norm with hetero couples). This means that one of them is always only a legal custodian, if at all. Hence, their custodial rights are left (alas) to the whims of southern-esque bureaucrats who are beholden to the truck-driving citizens that elected them.

    It's not ideal, but far beats being thrown in jail, losing nearly all hope of having custody of your kid(s?) and having your financial, professional and personal lives being basically wrecked by an overzealous (and law-breaking?) judge with an agenda who just wants to put gun owners in jail.

  • ||

    Wherever you're from, it's great there are no bigots there. Are you confusing the New Jersey judge with Fred Gwynne's role in My Cousin Vinny? Way to throw some random hate into an otherwise well-articulated comment.

  • Barely Suppressed Rage||

    I don't know about that issue, but I do know that as far as private property rights, gun ownership and being business-friendly, there's no comparison. Virginia kicks NJ's ass in all three.

  • prolefeed||

    ""they're quite blatantly unconstitutional.""

    Sez who? Thanks to Heller, they probably are constitutional.

    The constitution does not mean whatever the hell 5+ SCOTUS justices says it means. It means what it actually says.

  • ||

    yet you still think you have a fundamental consitutional right to a firearm after Heller and McDonald. You don't have any constitutional right unless you ask for a government bureaucrats permission first. If you don't, your're a criminal in NJ, NY and a few other states.

  • ||

    Heller was a win for the anti-gun crowd. Too bad many pro-gun folks hailed it as a victory.

    The problem is too many folk, mostly LEO, think rights are privileges. I've often heard the 4th amendment described as your 4th amendment privilege, not 4th amendment right.

  • Highway||

    And at the same time, they elevate their own privileges to the level of a right, like "The police had every right to search the vehicle because they had a feeling in their gut that this guy was bad, er, I mean, they saw something which looked like a knife under the seat, but was really a McDonald's straw wrapper."

  • ||

    I wonder what the average cop would score on a test covering the amendments. I'm not saying all cops are dumb, I'm just saying I'm uncomfortable with the standards we have for them.

  • ||

    It's heart breaking to see yet another example of the state flushing a citizen's natural rights down the toilet. If you're as outraged as I am, please email or write the gov's office to make sure this case gets the attention it deserves:
    http://www.state.nj.us/governor/contact/
    Office of the Governor
    PO Box 001
    Trenton, NJ 08625
    609-292-6000

    I don't know which topic was appropriate, but I chose "law and public safety". Hopefully a few hundred emails from those of us who believe in individual freedom will ensure this gets addressed ASAP.

  • Jen||

    I was trying to decide between "Law/Public Safety" and "Corrections." I guess you're right.

  • Pip||

    Done. Now the rest of you Reasonites, get cracking.

  • Anonymous Coward||

    In Judge James Morley's sick-sad world, skullfucking a cow is perfectly acceptable behavior (especially when a cop does it), but carrying unloaded, locked guns in the trunk (otherwise known as glorified paperweights) is simply beyond the pale.

  • ||

    Comments are hidden for your protection. Click here to show them.

    Reason should adopt this language.

  • Gabby||

    During a bizarre hearing [in Burlington County, NJ], a Superior Court judge dismissed animal-cruelty charges against a Moorestown police officer accused of sticking his penis into the mouths of five calves in rural Southampton in 2006, claiming a grand jury couldn’t infer whether the cows had been “tormented” or “puzzled” by the situation or even irritated that they’d been duped out of a meal.

    “If the cow had the cognitive ability to form thought and speak, would it say, ‘Where’s the milk? I’m not getting any milk,’ ” Judge James J. Morley asked.

    Children, Morley said, seemed “comforted” when given pacifiers, but there’s no way to know what bovine minds thought of Robert Melia Jr. substituting his member for a cow’s teat.

    “They [children] enjoy the act of suckling,” the judge said. “Cows may be of a different disposition.”
    In its weirdness, this is all very Ally McBeal-ish (although too explicit for that show).

    So, how did the prosecutor feel about all of this?

    Burlington County Assistant County Prosecutor Kevin Morgan was certainly irritated by the ruling, claiming the grand jury didn’t see the videos of the alleged incident, including one in which one hungry calf allegedly head-butts Melia in the stomach.
    Should the alleged head-butt be construed as an expression of dissent? Or perhaps the calf just wished that Melia were more well-endowed?

  • ||

    the grand jury didn’t see the videos of the alleged incident

    It was videotaped?!?

    YouTube cries out for public dissemination (so to speak). Why not? Apparently, no one was hurt, and no crime was committed.

  • Barely Suppressed Rage||

    Should the alleged head-butt be construed as an expression of dissent? Or perhaps the calf just wished that Melia were more well-endowed?

    No, it is an instinctual reflex - it is how the calf gets momma cow to let her milk down. The calf will come up and bump momma up under her belly to get the milk flowing.

    I know this because I worked on a dairy farm while in high school. Can't imagine sticking your dick a calf's mouth - they're pretty damn strong critters and I would think it would be like sticking yer dick in a shop vac, only more so, added with the fact that their tongues are kinda like sandpaper. I'd think you'd be pretty damn raw if you did it to five calves in a row.

  • ||

    No one's bothered by "They [children] enjoy the act of suckling."

    I'm not saying at all that it equates, but if "cows may be of a different disposition" then why not, right? We don't know what infants are thinking either....

    I can't believe all evidence points to "Hey, Bob stuck his dick in a bunch of calves' mouths" and everyone wasn't flipped out enough to go "Right, how much time can we give him? Do that, let's call it a day. You're fucked up, Bob."

  • ||

    man, you would have to be one brave retard to stick ur wang between all those teeth.

  • ||

    This is a prime example of why people who are informed should never shy away from jury duty.

    We should all be civic minded and try our best to answer jury pool questions honestly but in a way that sounds like we dropped out of high school.

  • Jen||

    Agreed, but until jurors are paid what their employers would have paid them had they spent the time working, anyone intelligent enough to hold employment will continue to avoid jury duty.

  • Ken||

    The pay idea is good but I really believe that it's our civic duty.

    Do it for the Brian Aitkens of the world.

  • Jen||

    I agree with you on a personal level, and as a paralegal by trade, if I got called I would actually want to go. But for most I think it boils down to simple economics. A lot of people live paycheck-to-paycheck and wouldn't be able to afford the lapse in pay even if they wanted to, and others just don't give enough of a damn to sacrifice the pay even if they can afford it. The consequence is that we end up with the bottom of the barrel on most juries.

  • ||

    That is a dilemma and not just for jury duty. I refuse to join organizations like the ABA because they are run by leftists who pursue goals I find appalling. But in doing that I have ceded to field to said leftists. And if I join I have to send them money.

  • -||

    That's a shame. you sound like a dancing queen.

  • ||

    That is ABBA. ABA is the tribute band that only plays law schools.

  • -||

    :)

  • ||

    This is a prime example of why people who are informed should never shy away from jury duty.

    We should all be civic minded and try our best to answer jury pool questions honestly but in a way that sounds like we dropped out of high school.

  • ||

    another good reason not to live in new england...

  • Jen||

    New Jersey is not part of New England.

  • ||

    Yet it remains "new." How can this be?

  • ||

    "I'm not looking for A New England
    I'm just looking for another girl."

  • ||

    Why do communists so often produce good music?

  • ||

    They don't have jobs. More time to hone their craft.

  • Tharms||

    There is very little that is new in New Jersey. Like New York, it is mostly decrepit and deteriorating. They do have a new hole in the ground near a river though. It doesn't go anywhere though, since they stopped digging. Perhaps they can bulldoze the rest of the state into it, cover it up, and start over.

  • Kristen||

    Oh jeeeeeeze.

  • ||

    Ironic given Jersey's mob reputation. They can't arrest the true menaces to society so they pinch the small-timers.

    Loser.

    All of them.

  • ||

    Hey, where are Tony and his gang of statists on this?

  • ||

    They never show up on these threads. Go figure.

  • ||

    Actually they do show up. Just in troll form as evidenced by the post below.

  • John and Dagny Galt||

    If all the producers left New Jersey then the looters would stick out even more! Don't live there, don't go there, and don't purchase anything from there! Simple!

  • Mr Whipple||

    But, but, we got big glitzy casinos in the middle of a desert ghetto.

  • ||

    "[His mom] works with children who have mental health problems, and she has always been taught to call police as a precaution when someone appears despondent and shows any sign that he might harm himself."

    Dumb bitch. You call 911 as a precaution against being sued, not because it's going to save your sons life. Jeeeez.

  • ||

    the cops are never your friend. She is probably old enough to remember a time when they might have been. But not any more. Don't call the cops unless you want someone sent to jail or shot because that and write tickets is all they do now.

  • ||

    The NJ voir dire asks "will you decide the facts as you hear them, and apply the law as I instruct?"

    "Yes." Because you aren't going to instruct me as to whether certain laws are, or are not Constitutional, or whether the prosecution has adhered to its Constitutional duties.

    I am, therefor, free to reach my own conclusions as to the validity of the law and the prosecution, and acquit (or convict) accordingly.

    In this case, the law is grossly unconstitutional. Further, the search of his car was unconstitutional. Ergo, I will vote to acquit, consistent with my duties as a juror and my obligation to follow your instructions on the law.

  • Tharms||

    Should people not have to bear some responsibility for knowing the laws and risks they take in traveling through and taking up residency in certain states? There are certain states that I absolutely will not travel through, except by means of a public carrier (train or plane) which are largely exempt from harassment (once you are onboard). Any gun owner who goes anywhere near the East Coast is just as big a risk taker as any homosexual who goes anywhere near Texas. The states are all different, and thankfully so, the alternative would be worse, but you have to be responsible for knowing the differences if you are going to travel. I wouldn't hold my breath waiting for any reprieve from Christy. Anyone that far up the food chain is inherently corrupt and beholding to the system rather than to justice.

  • ||

    A codicil to your "people bear responsibility for knowing the laws" tenent.

    People wronged by the law have the responsibility to right the wrong.

    I can see myself doing my time, and then bringing hell down on that judge. Let him heal from his kneecap surgery and then make a visit on his elbows. That fuck would scoot around the carpet on his ass when I finally considered the issue even.

  • ||

    Are you suggesting that "homosexuals" in Texas take more risks than "homosexuals" on the east coast? By the way, you don't have a problem with gays, do you? Don't know why, but I kinda picked up on that.

  • ||

    "as any homosexual who goes anywhere near Texas"

    You must have never been here then. Thriving gay districts in most cities. I'm sitting right next to two gay guys at work right now.
    Amazingly enough, they're not tied by rope to trailer hitches or being hassled by a judicial system gone-awry.

  • ||

    "Any gun owner who goes anywhere near the East Coast is just as big a risk taker as any homosexual who goes anywhere near Texas. "

    I second the comment that you have never been anywhere near Texas.

    By the way, homosexuals in Texas can actually carry guns to defend themselves - in their home and car without a license and concealed in public with a shall-issue license.

  • Matrix||

    Virginia has fairly liberal (by liberal I mean lax) gun laws. Open carry withou a permit. And getting a conceal carry permit is not too onerous, though I would argue even needing a permit is too onerous. Virginia is on the East Coast. Don't lump all East Coast states in with New Jersey and New York.

  • Mr Whipple||

    WTF? I just did an inmate search. He has a mandatory minimum of 3 years.

    Current Parole Eligibility Date: August 22, 2013

    Current Max Release Date: November 24, 2015

    Admission Date: August 27, 2010

    1 count of :
    2C:39-5B*2 Weapons/Unlawful Possession:Handguns /2

    1 count of :
    2C:39-3J*4 Weapons/Devices Proh:Magazines /4

    1 count of :
    2C:39-3F*4 Weapons/Devices Proh:Dum-Dum/Pen.Bullt/4

    He is Mid-State Correctional Facility, which is located in Fort Dix. It is a Tree-Jumper prison. For those of you unaware of that term, it is for pedophiles with less than 5 years (to serve). No work release, furloughs or community activity. All inmates are assigned to work details and have the opportunity to participate in various programs developed within the guidelines of the lease agreement.

    http://www.state.nj.us/corrections/pages/cia/mscf.html

    https://www6.state.nj.us/DOC_Inmate/inmatefinder?i=I

  • ||

    that poor bastard is going to get labled for being there. not good.

  • mr. smarty||

    Why are there no comments on this post...doesn't this make the article null and void as propaganda B.S.?

  • Mr Whipple||

    Radley,

    You make the mistake of not pointing out the differences in the NJ laws between handguns and rifles/shotguns. You repeatedly refer to the "firearms" laws without making the distinction. Anyone in NJ with a clean record can buy as many rifles and shotguns as they want. The penalties for illegally possessing them are different, as well.

  • Barely Suppressed Rage||

    Anyone in NJ with a clean record can buy as many rifles and shotguns as they want.

    After, of course, obtaining the state-mandated "Firearms purchaser ID card," which requires fingerprinting and background checking, as well as waiting for the police to process your application and getting the card back to you, if I recall correctly.

    To buy long guns, you need the ID card - i.e., state approval that you're allowed to buy and own guns. To buy a handgun, you have to get an additional permit to purchase a handgun (yes, it's a "permit" just to buy the damn gun). And you have to indicate how many handguns you'll be buying, and the card is good for only - what was it, 30 days? So if you don't buy the gun within that period, you have to reapply for the permit. The permit to buy a handgun comes through your local PD, so in some jurisdictions it might be issued in 24 hours; in others it can take weeks. And again, fingerprinting, background check, yadda yadda.

    And any time you transfer possession fo a firearm in NJ, you have to register the transfer. So, e.g., my brother wanted to give my father a shotgun (both still live in NJ). If I'm recalling correctly, he would have to document and register the transfer.

  • Jacob||

    Sounds like someone had a bad lawyer! If this guy were a criminal he would have be off after 30 days or with time-served.

  • Mr Whipple||

    No. He the best lawyers.

    NEW JERSEY GUN LAW GUIDE by Evan F. Nappen, Attorney at Law, and Richard Gilbert, Attorney at Law, is a comprehensive presentation of the major topics of New Jersey gun law, presented in an easy-to-read FAQ format. Additionally, the book contains a valuable set of appendices providing the reader with instant access to New Jersey and Federal firearm statutes and code.

    http://www.lulu.com/product/pa.....de/5505852

    Sometimes the best lawyers can get you the worst sentences if you are convicted at trial.

  • Mr Whipple||

    If he hadn't gone to trial, a Public Defender probably would have got him a 365 on a plea deal. He'd be out in 3 months. I had a Public Defender knock down a 4 with 1 mandatory to 1 year probation.

    And, if he plead it to a 3rd degree felony, instead of being found guilty at trial on a 2nd degree felony, he could have it expunged in 10 years.

  • ||

    I wonder if he was eligible for Pre-Trial Intervention, if he successfully completed it, he could have the record expunged in 6 MONTHS!

  • ||

    No PTI for 2nd degree felony. Treated the same as if he'd pointed a loaded gun at someone.

  • Mr Whipple||

    No ISP either with a mandatory minimum. This Judge really had a bug up his ass. Reminds me of Judge Baxter, that cunt. And yes, an ISP officer told me that gun possession charges are eligible for ISP as long as the gun(s) were not used to commit a crime.

    This guy is going to have to do 3 years in PC? Can't he get into a halfway house, at least. From what I heard, PC sucks.

  • ||

    I was in the courtroom for the entire trial. The majority of the defense was based upon the fact that he was moving back from Colorado. For the prosecutor's office to say that "There was no evidence produced at the trial by the defendant that warranted such a defense." is disingenuous in the least.

  • ||

    Congrats New Jersey your state is a POS.

  • ||

    I am sickened by liberal judges who believe they are God and will punish anyone who doesn't fit their liberal sheep mold. As for the extremely vulgar language on these postings: Such crudities may be a way to express and assuage anger, but the vulgarities only make people assume that Libertarians are crude, Neanderthals with an intelligence level and vocabulary of a pre-adolescent moron. You are not exercising free speech but an assault on the sensibilities of REASONING people. Grow up!

  • ||

    Agreed... Thank You.

  • Mr Whipple||

    Piss off.

  • Kristen||

    Give me a break. The English language - all of it - is a beautiful and complex thing. These words exist for a reason and speaking and writing them expresses a lot more than anger. Try it sometime - it's very good for throwing off that old-timey repression.

  • ||

    For a sailor you sure do have your panties in a bunch over language.
    Grow the fuck up, Crackerjack.

  • mr. smarty||

    I'm sickened by conservative judges, OK?

  • ||

    You've seen one? Where'd he go???

  • Sanjuro Tsubaki||

    Grrrrrrrrr.....

  • Some Guy||

    Even without agreeing with the laws, I can't say the law is at fault here because the guy clearly complied with it, as the cops who arrested him testified to.

    The judge should have been impeached if he wasn't already gone.

  • ||

    Here's another thing. If his ex was already giving him a hard time with the kid, this won't help.

    Don't get me going on wives who act litke total bitches towards the FATHER and how the law sides with the women who act selfishly.

  • ||

    theres a reason for this, number one, it keeps people fighting each other, instead of concentrating on the real issues going on in your country. and number two, men raised by women are more likely to be dominated and controlled by said women and therefore supplicant in general. hurray sheeple. wake the fuck up and take your country back.

  • ||

    Wow! Some of these comments are...well...retarded. I'd expect higher standards from Reason.com readers. Name calling? Is this the 4th grade?

    My only contribution to this thread is this: If the dialog here is a reflection of the public in general, we are in some deep siht. Stop beating each other up, and start looking for solutions.

  • ||

    Only solution is an overwhelming avalanche of (respectful) letters to Governor Christie. The courts have failed... the only court that matters now is the court of public opinion. Either enough pressure is put on Governor Christie to convince him to grant Brian clemency... or Brian remains an inmate for as long as it takes the appeal to wind it's way through the courts.

  • Mr Whipple||

    I'd expect higher standards from Reason.com

    Drink?

    Name calling? Is this the 4th grade?

    It's called "blowing off steam", douchebag :)

  • Kristen||

    You must be new to the internet.

  • ||

    Pot.Kettle.Black.

  • ||

    New Jersey s the cesspool it is because leftists like the judge ignored the Constitution in order to impose their top-down socialist world-view.
    Governor Christie will do the right thing and not only pardon this innocent citizen but also bring charges against the entire cadre of totalitarians responsible for this abortion of justice.

  • Mr Whipple||

    Not really. NJ is a cesspool because of all of the corruption. We invented the word "crony". If it weren't for bribes, payoffs and kickbacks, nothing would get done in this state.

    I'm not bragging, just stating fact.

  • mr. smarty||

    No Mike, you are wrong. The governor will not pardon him, he committed the crime. For the record, sir, Socialism is a CONSERVATIVE ideal. I hate idiots who bring that up. Mike, you sir are an idiot who needs to RTFA and view it as the POS lies it is. He is serving three years for unlawful possession, not for anything more. Douchebag.

  • mr. smarty||

    No Mike, you are wrong. The governor will not pardon him, he committed the crime. For the record, sir, Socialism is a CONSERVATIVE ideal. I hate idiots who bring that up. Mike, you sir are an idiot who needs to RTFA and view it as the POS lies it is. He is serving three years for unlawful possession, not for anything more. Douchebag.

  • mr. smarty||

    No Mike, you are wrong. The governor will not pardon him, he committed the crime. For the record, sir, Socialism is a CONSERVATIVE ideal. I hate idiots who bring that up. Mike, you sir are an idiot who needs to RTFA and view it as the POS lies it is. He is serving three years for unlawful possession, not for anything more. Douchebag.

  • That_Guy123||

    Mr. Smarty.. you don't get it. The crime is the law itself. You kids in Jersey just lack the balls to get it off the books.

  • David||

    As presented, it seems like everyone with any authority acted badly.

    1) The police got a complaint that maybe this guy was a danger to himself. They determined he wasn't. How was a search of his car in any way reasonable?

    2) As mentioned, the prosecutor should not have pursued the case. The letter of the law is not always just, and people should not be prosecuted for taking the most responsible course of action.

    3) As mentioned, it was not the judge's place to decide the facts of the case. He should be impeached, removed, or not voted into office again depending on the details of New Jersey's court system.

    4) Aitken clearly deserves a pardon.


    All of this, however, is presuming the facts are as they appear to be as presented in this article.

    For instance, if he'd been driving around for weeks with the guns in the back of his car and just never bothered to remove them, then he was not being a responsible gun owner. Presuming the police concluded that he wasn't a threat *after* instead of *before* searching his car, then things are much less wrong with the world - 7 years is probably a bit harsh, but at least we are punishing irresponsibility instead of responsibility. The other conclusions are similarly dependent on fuzzy interpretation and spin, and so may or may not be valid in light of the actual facts underlying the story.

  • ||

    They concluded he was not a threat before searching car, and were very cordial and respectful through the entire ordeal... about 90 minutes or so.

  • MKEgal||

    "if he'd been driving around for weeks with the guns in the back of his car and just never bothered to remove them, then he was not being a responsible gun owner"

    How's that? From what I read, they were unloaded, encased, & possibly even locked. Aside from the possibility of simply being stolen out of the vehicle, that sounds pretty darn responsible to me.

  • mr. smarty||

    It's against NJ law, so there ya go.

  • Some Guy||

    3) As mentioned, it was not the judge's place to decide the facts of the case. He should be impeached, removed, or not voted into office again depending on the details of New Jersey's court system.

    He was not re-nominated by Christie,apparently due to being a shitty judge on other cases.

  • ||

    I know this isn't very Libertarian of me, but I think every Pro-Choice woman and every Homosexual should be REQUIRED to own a gun. Especially after these mid-term elections.

  • ||

    “A fear of weapons is a sign of retarded sexual and emotional maturity” Sigmund Freud, General Introduction to Psychoanalysis (1952)

  • Hooha||

    Yeah, because whenever the repugnantcans get control of congress under a liberal executive branch, they always enact mandatory 'lynch mob' legislation! As a law-abiding citizen, I've already begun to heat a bucket of tar, and have spent the last ten hours on the internet ferreting out women who've recieved abortions.

    Republicans can be backwards and silly, but shallow fearmongering bullcrap like that just makes you look like a latte-swilling liberal douchebag, Brian.

  • ||

    "I can see the point that taking the guns away from the party might have been the responsible thing to do," he says. But he adds that acting responsibly did not entitle Aitken to the moving exception."
    So the judge agrees that Aitken was being responsible, and can "understand" his actions, yet had no qualms about destroying his life and 7 years of his life, just because the exact letter of an idiotic law may, just may not have been followed?
    The sheer bureaucratic stupidity, emotional emptiness, and narrow minded idiocy of this character are incredible. Its sad that intellectually stunted retards like Judge Morley riddle our justice system.

  • ||

    If I have two residences in the state of New Jersey, as Brian apparently did temporarily... ought not he be allowed to "transport from one residence to another" and remain within the law?

  • Warren||

    Out-of-control judges, yet another violation of our rights. Add it to the list of gov’t violations of our right:
    They violate the 1st Amendment by placing protesters in cages, banning books like “America Deceived II” and censoring the internet.
    They violate the 2nd Amendment by confiscating guns.
    They violate the 4th and 5th Amendment by molesting airline passengers.
    They violate the entire Constitution by starting undeclared wars for foreign countries.
    Impeach Obama and sweep out the Congress, except Ron Paul.
    (Last link of Banned Book):
    http://www.iuniverse.com/Books.....-000190526

  • mr. smarty||

    Oh, yeah what war did Obama start? Who took away what 5th Amendment rights? You don't have to fly/swim/boat/drive if you don't want to admit your crime. DId the government ban books? Lock up protestors? Those are STATES rights cases, not FEDERAL cases. Impeach yourself sir, from normal life.

  • Dan||

    Thanks so much for getting Brian's story out!

    I can't think of anyone who deserves to be free more than Brian!

  • ||

    If the jury doesn't find fault they alone can throw it out, and tell the judge to piss off. Jury has that power to check judicial bench tyranny. They are backed up by the local sheriff who has final local authority.

  • ||

    sorry i know from experince they do not i got shafted by a judge, but i dont have that problem in south carolina i carry my gun u need one in walterboro but its all about liberal stupid judges

  • ||

    Oh, and fellow Americans, how's the fascist police state feel with their boot heel on your heads?
    Washington is now abusing us worse than King George ever did!
    So now what? Back to the all-you-can-eat, then some shopping, then home to the bong, Doritos, and Monday night football, ending with some internet games and porn?
    Wake up slaves! Government MUST fear the people or there can be no balance.

  • Hooha||

    Hey, I like internet games and porn!

  • ||

    And Doritos!

  • Thad B.||

    Most real and down to earth comment I have read yet. Does "THE RIGHT TO BEAR ARMS" mean anything? If you're a felon, no, no guns. Here in 'ole Wiscony if we are good we have guns, and plenty of them....

  • Daniel Liberti||

    From the story: "...Even the jurors who convicted him seem to have been looking for a reason to acquit him. But the judge gave them little choice..."

    They did have another option: "Not Guilty".
    Search on "Nullification"

    http://fija.org/

    Fully Informed Jury Association

  • ||

    i did it because i love you, not because im thinking rationally. which actually translates to im an emotional retard who dialed 911 and then hung up. this guy deserves a metal for putting up with his bitch ex, and still talking to his retard mother.

  • mr. smarty||

    *medal. I can give him a chunk of steel if he wants, he can mold it into a medal if he wants to wear it on his prison garb.

  • ||

    Your mom must be so proud of you!

  • ||

    Calling for the death or murder of the judge is wrong and that wrong plus the wrong he committed against Brain Aitken would not make anything right.

    What would make things right is a forthcoming pardon, compensation for wrongful arrest, prosecution, pain-suffering-emotional distress all paid for by simply shifting this judge's pension to the ownership of Aitken. The settlement would cost NJ taxpayers $0 because they have to pay pensions to even convicted former public official by NJ law and it would give him compensation he rightfully deserves for being railroaded in this evident kangaroo court (tribunal).

    Second the judge should be prosecuted for egregious misconduct. Judges are granted immunity when they act in their official capacity. Determining material facts and rendering judgments on what material facts are admissible and which are not amounts to fixing the verdict and in now way constitutes official capacity (Judges are allowed to make legal determination and judgments on questions of law-code-statute-rule). If it is determined that somehow this constitutes his official capacity, then that determination confirms this nation is a nation under the rule of men, not law, and God help us, for we can not help ourselves without legal recourse except violent revolution (UN Declaration of Human Rights).

    I do not want to see any bloodshed or violence, but if things don't start changing and continue to decline as they are, it will be unfortunately inevitable. If you force someone into a corner and allow them no quarter, when they realize that it is kill or be killed, the human nature reverts to animal/survival instincts and no words on a piece of paper or unwritten agreements of a social contract matter. Survival, living another day, is all that matters, when one's life is on the line.

  • ||

    [Calling for the death or murder of the judge is wrong..]

    Perhaps, which is why I suggested kneecapping first and elbowing second, allowing hm to scoot across the carpet on his ass like a poodle for the rest of his life. Moderation, always.

  • ||

    This case should have been killed at the grand jury. People have to eliminate this kind of abuse by refusing to indict. The jury should have returned not guilty and told the judge that they did not appreciate his conduct. Our jury system is being slowly eliminated by these clowns selected by the professional politicians. Our entire system now stinks and only action by the individual on jury duty will eliminate the judicial and police abuse.

  • ||

    NJ laws are VERY clear on transporting a firearm. Basically, you're only allowed to have a firearm in your car while traveling to/from your home, place of purchase or repair, and a shooting range. You are not permitted to 'substantially deviate' from a direct route between any two of those points.

    Although I TOTALLY disagree (and am sickened) by what happened, if he carried the guns in his car and was NOT travelling between any of the two points listed above, he was in clear violation of NJ law. Law sucks, but get the law changed, don't argue its a crappy law. And even though he just moved from Colorado, ignorance is not allowable, especially in NJ.

    The whole state is so Anti-gun that every gun owner knows that they are only a single step away from jail because its so easy to get a conviction, even though you had no intent on breaking the law. Just give us more tax money to hire more police and we'll protect you, you silly person with a gun!

    Glad I'm out of there for good!!

  • ||

    More policemen? You're being sarcastic, correct? Policemen? Those fellows from whom drugs are bought and who hurt people with disinterested abandon? Curse them and may we one day rid our cities of their criminal ways and corruption.

  • ||

    The judge of Aitken's trial needs to be removed from the bench and then railroaded into a 7 year prison sentence! This man is lower than pond scum. Judges like this make a mockery of what the US legal system used to be looked up at not so long ago. The worst part? This man is still allowed on the bench and to make his mockery of the system he is supposed to non-biased interpret.

  • ||

    Actually, if you read the article carefully, you'll find that the new Governor removed him from the bench already, for other reasons. This was hardly his only arrogant behavior that resulted in justice being derailed.

  • Kelvin||

    Fuck N.J. and all the stupid people that live by these stupid rules.

  • brent||

    Sounds like a Jersey thing

  • ||

    Everybody at the Shore definitely knows The Situation. As far as I know, everybody loves The Situation, and if you don't love The Situation, I'm gonna make you love The Situation.

  • Robert||

    What a Band of Fricken Morons!!! This is the USA!!! OMG!

  • ||

    RULE: Never, never, never call the cops on your own kids. NEVER!

    The police, the courts, the judges and the juries of the 21st Century cannot be trusted. Look around, turn off your TV. The world has changed. And not for the better.

  • ||

    This is the exemplary of the crisis facing a nation under siege by its own various governments representing assorted and overlapping jurisdictions. The time is coming that liberty-loving people are going to have establish boundaries, take a stand, and fight for what's right. We are becoming lemmings, a once great nation full rodent-people being abused by vermin. The thugs are at the door, the time to decide whether or not we let them kick it in is upon us.

  • Matthew Maxwell||

    1 word: mistrial-
    if that doesn't work pardon

  • Edwin||

    so what happened to this guy is horrible. We wish this would not happen to anyone. So here's what I don't get; if you guys don't want stuff lioke this to happen, why don't you all be more reasonable and level-headed in your libertarianism? Why the fuck do you have to be such dumbasses and weirdos and extremists and end up shooing people away from liberty-oriented ideas? I mean when people hear stupid shit like your think that drunk driving should be legal, or claims that taxation is exactly the same as theft, ore that there should be no government and all governments are exactly the same as the Mafia, people get turned off of the entire ideology. I know I sure as hell did.

    So if you want stuff like this to happen less, and more people tro be more liberty-minded, why not start by being more reasonable?

  • ||

    Quite aside from the ridiculous nature of the NJ gun laws, this is fundamentally a case of an uninformed jury making a bad decision because of misconduct by the trial's judge. First off, when the judge refused to answer questions about the "moving exception" that were put to him by the jury, they should have aquitted (or at least hung the jury) on the spot. If nothing else, it would let the judge know that he was interfering with, rather than furthering, the judicial process, and maybe he would have learned not to do that any more. Secondly, if the jurors (even one of them) thought the defendant was not intending to commit a crime (intent being a necessary element of the crime), they should have voted to acquit. If even one juror had voted his/her conscience in this case, it would have prevented an obvious miscarriage of justice. I recommend anyone interested in understanding the actual rights and responsibilities of jurors in this country go to www.FIJA.org, the Fully Informed Jury Association's website, to learn more.

  • ||

    Can you tell me again why anyone lives in New Jersey?

  • ||

    G.T.L. baby. Gym, Tanning, Laundry.

  • jim brown||

    at least the judge doesnt have his job anymore,hopefully the new govenor will have enough common sense to see that those laws are changed. Those resposible for te aggressive enforcement of those laws should be discilplined as well.

  • ||

    From a climate and geography standpoint, NJ is a lovely state. The climate is mild and a lot of the scenery is spectacular.
    Politically, it is another matter. We have a thoroughly corrupt government protected by a corrupted legal system. Judges do not care about your constitutional rights one way or another. I heard of one judge state to a defense lawyer, "You cannot bring the Constitution into my courtroom."
    The government is not your friend. Police are enforcers for the government. Read and heed.

  • ||

    "To disarm the people -- that was the best and most effectual way to enslave them." -George Mason

    "The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government." -Thomas Jefferson

    "When firearms go, all goes- we need them every hour." -George Washington

    "The Constitution shall never be construed ... to prevent the people of the United States who are peaceable citizens from keeping their own arms." -Samuel Adams

    "The great object is that every man be armed." -Patrick Henry

    "Firearms are second only to the Constitution in importance; they are the peoples' liberty's teeth."
    -George Washington

  • mr. smarty||

    Yay, lots of quotes from times when guns were required for survival. Oh crap, I see a redcoat, hold on...

  • mr. smarty||

    Phew, it was just a cute Doe who did nothing but eat some of my weeds away. Don't worry I shot her 42 times anyway because store meat sucks!

  • ||

    "The Constitution is not an instrument for the government to restrain the people, it is an instrument for the people to restrain the government."
    -Patrick Henry

  • ||

    "When the people fear their government, there is tyranny; when the government fears the people, there is liberty." —Thomas Jefferson

  • ||

    "If a nation expects to be ignorant and free, in a state of civilization, it expects what never was and never will be." —Thomas Jefferson

  • ||

    "All tyranny needs to gain a foothold is for people of good conscience to remain silent." —Thomas Jefferson

  • ||

    "Honor, justice, and humanity, forbid us tamely to surrender that freedom which we received from our gallant ancestors, and which our innocent posterity have a right to receive from us. We cannot endure the infamy and guilt of resigning succeeding generations to that wretchedness which inevitably awaits them if we basely entail hereditary bondage on them." -Thomas Jefferson

  • ||

    "The time is near at hand which must determine whether Americans are to be free men or slaves." -George Washington

  • ||

    "Posterity -- you will never know how much it has cost my generation to preserve your freedom. I hope you will make good use of it." -John Quincy Adams

  • ||

    Say what?

  • ||

    I sure as hell wouldn't want to live in a society where the only people allowed guns are the police and the military.

  • mr. smarty||

    Then don't ever leave the U.S.A. good sir, since most civilized countries don't allow guns.

  • ||

    "When the American spirit was in its youth, the language of America was different: Liberty, sir, was the primary object." -Patrick Henry

  • ||

    "My reading of history convinces me that most bad government results from too much government." —Thomas Jefferson

  • ||

    "When plunder becomes a way of life for a group of men living together in society, they create for themselves in the course of time a legal system that authorizes it and a moral code that justifies it." -Frederic Bastiat

  • ||

    If I were a criminal, I'd head straight for new Jersey. I lived there for almost half my life, and I know how much that governmet wants to protect you from yourselves . . . and make a cool profit on your fines. One of the many reasons i no longer live in the Peoples Republic or New Jersey.

  • ||

    thats unfair i know what its like but in a different sitution the judge wouldn't let the jurors have any say , i was going to lose my home over fraud, ect. but judge dismissed my case and i had proof so they need to redo his and let him out stinking liberal judges

  • Thad B.||

    Stay outta Jersey!!! Are you from jersey?..I'm not thank God.....

  • dr kill||

    He's lucky he only got seven. I think ten could have been dished out.

  • ||

    The judge's actions remind me of an old riddle:
    Q. What do you call a lawyer with an I.Q. of 60?

    A. Your Honor.

  • ||

    You IDIOTS who choose to live in that God forsaken State deserve what you get. Stupid people do STUPID things. No cops available your government says LET THE BAD GUYS have their way You are all IDIOTS. Move where your rights are protected

  • ||

    I believe that the criminal justice system should always be reluctant to punish someone who didn't think he was doing anything wrong. And certainly even if this individual was technically in violation of the law (I am not sure he was, but just in case) a good prosecutor, who is supposed to represent the public good, should have used reasonable judgment to make sure that this individual doesn't receive disproportionate punishment.

    But as a New Jersey resident, I am extremely proud of our gun laws and wish that my state would be the first ranked state in the U.S. for the strictness of its gun laws by the Brady Center rather than the second ranked (California is first). I wonder how many of those individuals on here who wish to change NJ's gun laws are even from NJ.

    While it is possible to end the life of another human being using a wide variety of objects if one tries hare enough, guns are more lethal than those other everyday objects by an order of magnitude. Handguns in the possession of private citizens leads to the immoral situation where juveniles are criminally prosecuted for making the type of statements that all of us have made as child, but are now perceived as a "threat."

    I will be working with the Brady Campaign to pass new, stricter gun laws in this state, including mandatory ballistic fingerprinting for all firearms. The immorality of other states' gun laws is shocking and Americans should be ashamed.

  • ||

    Hi Jeff... I'm no expert on gun laws (never owned any) but this is my son we're talking about and as much as you sound like an intelligent and thoughtful person... your views on gun control seems to be a bit extreme. How, for instance do you reconcile the argument that.. if you outlaw guns, only outlaws etc...? .

  • ||

    Outlaws will always be able to get guns. How do you think they get them now? Only good citizens have to, and will, go through the paperwork and background check the State requires. You think felons do the paperwork to get a gun?? God, man, how hard is this?

  • ||

    I am sorry about your son and I certainly don't blame you if you can't stay cool-headed when your son is involved.

    That is an argument that I have heard a lot, as you can imagine. It is a truism: any time we make a certain type of behavior illegal, only criminals will engage in that behavior by definition. That doesn't mean that that behavior shouldn't be illegal.

    More importantly, if all handguns were illegal, obtaining an illegal handgun would not be nearly as easy as the gun lobby makes it out to be. International comparisons are fraught with danger since there are many differences between the United States and any foreign countries besides gun laws, but nonetheless they can be useful, especially when comparing the behavior of criminals in the U.S. to those in other places. Criminals in Europe are mostly unarmed, and even the violent types make do with knives or similar instruments. Even in the United States with proliferation of guns, how is it that felons do get into trouble by attempting to purchase a gun at a gun shop but they don't pass the Brady check?

    Machining a handgun at home or importing a handgun illegally and finding a buyer for your illegal product while evading the attention of police is not that easy. Some exceedingly determined criminals may be able to do it, but the low level criminals in the ghetto and the disturbed persons will not.

  • ||

    Thank you for your kind words, I take them as a genuine expression of concern. However, please don't assume that because I disagree with your position, that I have somehow lost my ability to remain "cool headed".

    I am sure that it was unintended, but it is a bit condescending.

    My level-headed belief continues to be that your position is extreme and unattainable.

    How, for example, is the war on drugs going?

    Not to change the subject, but some of the comparisons are relevant. Simply saying that drugs are illegal does not make them magically disappear. Instead, we spend billions upon billions of dollars every year on law enforcement, trying to attain the unattainable.

    And then billions more imprisoning the poor souls who cannot control their addictive tendancies. By the way, it stands to reason that we most certainly should include alcohol in the group of banned substances... seeing as how addictive and destructive it is. But we both know how well that worked.

    Again, I do not hold myself out to be an expert on gun laws, but I am not so foolish as to think that the magic disappearing act will work with them either.

    This whole gun issue was thrust upon me without warning, and I had not studied it much until recently. But even in the past, whenever the subject came up... my opinion was that I probably don't feel a need to own a gun in the areas I travel on a day-to-day basis.

    However, if I lived in a rural area where the closest police were miles away, I would certainly keep a weapon in the home. But who am I to say that because Jeff, on the other hand, lives in an urban area, so he should not be allowed to protect himself, if he so chooses?

    Where I think we may agree is in the area of some regulation and certainly a background check requirement.

    Thanks for the discussion.

  • ||

    "The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government."-Thomas Jefferson

    "No Free man shall ever be debarred the use of arms."
    -Thomas Jefferson, Proposal Virginia Constitution, 1 T. Jefferson Papers, 334,[C.J. Boyd, Ed., 1950]

    That the said Constitution shall never be construed to authorize Congress to infringe the just liberty of the press or the rights of conscience; or to prevent the people of the United States who are peaceable citizens from keeping their own arms ... "
    -Samuel Adams, Debates and Proceedings in the Convention of the Commonwealth of Massachusetts, at 86-87 (Pierce & Hale, eds., Boston, 1850)

    "Firearms are second only to the Constitution in importance; they are the peoples' liberty's teeth."
    -George Washington

  • Greg||

    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/S.....nstitution

    Sounds like a stupid state with stupid people.
    "A well regulated militia being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the People to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed."

  • ||

    Shouldn't then gun owners have a, say, mandatory four hour Saturday morning militia practice every week to satisfy the qualifier to these words? It says that a militia is necessary for the security of the free state and that it needs to be well regulated.

  • ||

    "The strongest reason for the people to retain the right to keep and bear arms is, as a last resort, to protect themselves against tyranny in government."-Thomas Jefferson

  • ||

    Gross miscarriage of justice it would appear. That said, I have to wonder if there is more to this story...the judge seems to be pure EVIL!

    Jobs in Asia - http://www.pathtoasia.com/jobs/

  • ||

    Perhaps firearm ownership restrictions will be relaxed as a condition of New Jersey's coming austerity package and structural adjustment program.

  • ||

    The state's broke... can't afford a new austerity program... gonna look for a used one:)

  • ||

    I was born and raised in New York, which, as far as gun laws and 2nd Amendment rights go, is identical to The People's Republic of New Jersey. Thank GOD I moved from that shit hole the moment I was able to do so.

    Now I live in Tennessee and God help the dumb son of a bitch that tries this crap in my state. Say what you want about rednecks, these people know how to fight for their freedom. This judge would have lasted exactly the amount of time it took to get his faggoty black robe off and walk to his car before somebody strung him up by his nuts in the parking lot. As it should be.

    Basically what I am saying is fuck New York and fuck New Jersey. You can keep your mosques and your crooked politicians and your slicked-back Jersey Shore douchebags and rich jackwads that do nothing but perpetuate the backwards libtard politics that are destroying this country from within.

    When the shit hits the fan in this country, and it surely will, there's no place I would rather be than Tennessee. Where I can grab my AR-15 anytime I want and jackstains like this judge have absolutely no power to stop me.

  • ||

    That's just it: you are not going to grab your AR-15 and rise up against the government. Because you know that ultimately the government is more powerful than you and you will wind up dead, even if you do shoot a few judges or cops or whatever. Thus, your AR-15 does not represent any type of limit on governmental powers.

  • ||

    civil disobedience WILL be on the rise, jagoff!!!!! "LIVE FREE OR DIE"

  • ||

    What exactly do you mean by civil disobedience? Surely that can mean a lot of things short of grabbing an AR-15.

  • ||

    Jeff, since you're so certain I won't, I invite you to be the first one to find out.

    I assure you, the blaze of glory in which I depart this planet will be much more than "a few". It will be many. And while 30 or 40 police state thugs might not seem like much of a dent, multiply that number by the thousands of others that feel the same way I do, and suddenly the threat of a well armed and convicted public that is willing to defend their freedom is a pretty scary thing.

    The problem is with weak sheeple such as yourself. Because your mentality is like a cancer that infects the majority of our population. Your defeatist attitude and unwillingness to fight for your constitutional freedom is why we are so weak as a country.

    Because let's face it, there are many more civilians in this country than law enforcement officers, government officials and military personnel. And the fact of the matter is that if every one of them was willing to stand up and fight for their freedom, there is nothing this government could do to stop it. Power in numbers is a wonderful thing, as long as the "numbers" aren't spineless sheeple like you that accept defeat as an alternative to fighting for their freedom.

    But that's your right Jeff. I signed on the dotted line and fought for my country so that you could have that right and that opinion. And fortunately, this government trained me in the skills I will need to protect myself against them. That's irony for you.

    My AR-15 may not represent a limit on government powers, but I will live and die as a free man. While people like you and your family will probably rot in some FEMA camp.

  • ||

    I should also point out that after an extremely cursory investigation into this clown, it appears that Jeffy is a liberal attorney from just outside Philly. Why am I not surprised. A Google search turns up a couple of posts by him on some other news and blog sites and all of it is on the 2nd Amendment topic and his apparent disdain for it. Again, not surprised.

    I'm sure there will be a response to my last post from Gun Buster Jeff, vilifying me as a gun toting lunatic, as I'm sure he views anyone concerned with protecting their 2nd Amendment rights...

    Just to be clear. I am not advocating heading into town and clearing out the local court room.

    Let me nip this one in the bud before Left Wing Jeff has a chance to do that... I am talking about a SHTF situation where martial law and Continuity of Government is in full effect and we have no choice but to stand up and fight.

    There are many people prepared and willing to do just that. Despite what Jeffy would have you believe.

  • ||

    I can most definitely assure you I am not an attorney. I work in the financial field.

  • ||

    I am not defeatist, I don't believe that owning a handgun should be a constitutional right. I would like handguns outlawed. But I do believe in checks on governmental powers that actually work. These include organizations such as the ACLU, which use public awareness and the court system to fight for our civil liberties, and independent activists, who shine the light on governmental officials who overreach their powers.

    Thousands of civilians who are willing to go on a shooting rampage would be a scary thing, but you would never be able to organize it because you would be arrested for making terroristic threats way before your organization got off the ground.

  • ||

    Guess we'll find out.

    Send me a postcard from your dirty corner of the Fema camp.

  • ||

    Jeff, just shorten your opinion to "I don't believe in the constitution". You profess support for the ACLU as an effective hedge against a tyrannical gov't...seriously? Public awareness? Independent activists? Did you get an "A" in your Alinsky Studies course? I mean no disrespect as I use this recently popular phrase but you better "man up" if a SHTF scenario ever does unfold. Contrary to popular belief, achievers still represent a majority in America. Not whiners looking for handouts, not elite academics who engage in hypotheticals. If and when the true majority awakens they won't need "organizing".

  • ||

    Jeff, just shorten your opinion to "I don't believe in the constitution". You profess support for the ACLU as an effective hedge against a tyrannical gov't...seriously? Public awareness? Independent activists? Did you get an "A" in your Alinsky Studies course? I mean no disrespect as I use this recently popular phrase but you better "man up" if a SHTF scenario ever does unfold. Contrary to popular belief, achievers still represent a majority in America. Not whiners looking for handouts, not elite academics who engage in hypotheticals. If and when the true majority awakens they won't need "organizing".

  • Leroy||

    Jeff,

    Without the threat of an armed public, the ACLU and citizen activists would not be able to operate.

    Why do you think tyrannical countries don't have an ACLU? Why are there no citizen activists in North Korea? Because they would be killed by the government.

    That can't happen in the USA because of an armed population that would kill the government back.

  • ||

    People are wrongly convicted in this country every single day; but gun huggers are only concerned when its one of their own. Funny.

  • ||

    Pretty broad condemnation... all gun owners are cut from the same cloth, eh?

  • ||

    What about jury nullification?

    fija.org

  • ||

    Take a look at the Philadelphia Prosecutor training video on "Jury Selection" at the "Free Brian Aitken" Facebook page:

    http://www.facebook.com/pages/.....865?v=wall

    and be prepared to get very nervous.

  • ||

    Got jury nullification?
    If I'm on that jury it's hung!

  • ||

    That is rediculously un-fair. The cops in the first place should have just let him be on his way.
    "They were locked, unloaded, and stored in the trunk, as federal and New Jersey law require for guns in transport."
    Really? I mean wtf.
    Then before that it says how he has no criminal records and such.
    This whole situation is just unethical.
    I find this himuluating to our country and our righs as a nation let alone a state.

  • don||

    For more than thousand reasons,. I am so happy and blessed not to live in New Jersey!! WHAT A SHITHOLE!!

  • ||

    Apparently shitholes have productive citizens because we are number one in median family income:

    http://www.statemaster.com/gra.....old-income

    Also, up here in the northwest part of the state where I live, the mountains are amazing, but I am still within easy driving distance of the shore and the nightlife of NYC.

  • ||

    Since when does the "productivity" of your citizens have any bearing on whether your state is a shithole?

    Your little slice of heaven in Northwest Jersey might be fantastic for Greek Restaurants and tea kettle boutiques too... but that doesn't change anything about the pollution and violent crime 50 miles to your east.

    But I'm really thrilled that your citizens are so "productive"... it should go a long way in helping them pay for the toll roads and property taxes that dwarf the rest of the country.

    Sounds like a desperate defense from a desperate man if you ask me. Citing how "productive' your citizens are is like citing Utah as having the highest Wednesday night Mormon bible study attendance numbers... who gives a shit.

    As for mountains, I have no doubt they are "amazing" in New Jersey. But if the Jersey mountains are "Amazing" then I guess the Smoky Mountains of Tennessee or Blue Ridge Mountains of North Carolina are friggen EPIC!

    Let's face it, the only thing New Jersey can brag about is its proximity to New York City. Which says a lot about New Jersey. When your main attraction is proximity to another state, that's about as sad and pathetic as it gets.

    Your gun laws suck, your politicians suck, you have no freedom, you live in a police state, you lead the country in pollution, waste, rude service industry professionals and asshole drivers and most Americans wouldn't piss on you if you were on fire. But enjoy those mountains Jeff. LOL.

  • ||

    If I were falsely accused of crime and had to face a jury trial, I would much rather be in one of the "police state" northeastern states like Massachusetts than in any of the southern states. It is still more likely that the judge an d the jury would uphold the rights of the accused in Massachusetts than in the rest of the U.S.

  • ||

    Being within driving range of NYC (an even bigger shithole) is not a benefit.

    "Mountains"? Only of landfill trash.

    As to the other, "Yeah, we get jailed for looking at someone crosseyed, but look at our average income."

  • www.RobeProbe.com||

    Upload a video critique of this dumb judge or any judge in any state and "tell it to the judge" on video by rating him on:
    http://www.RobeProbe.com
    world's most trusted judge rating site

  • ||

    Judge Morley is, in fact, the criminal and should be prosecuted for violating the rights of this poor unfortunate young man. To not allow relevent testimony that would clearly show that the gun owner was moving and transporting between residences is appalling. New Jersey, with its high crime rate, is without a doubt "infringing" on the 2nd amendment as well and is violating our U.S. Constitution.

  • ||

    this is shocking to me that a judge would not allow evedence in this case to be herd or to answere questions from jury that in its self is the only crime i have herd but the judge will get away with it and not have to answere to a higher power hes the one that should be servring 7 years in prison for not being truthful with the jury, why is he not up on any charges?man what a bunch of bull shit glad i live in texas

  • ||

    I'd shoot the mother....

  • ||

    Dayum.

    If Governor Christie has any aspirations to higher office, or even thinks he someday might have them, he will do himself a large favor by issuing a full pardon with restoration of rights, loudly proclaim the law as unjust and unconstitutional, and publicly proclaim the Public's good fortune of the judge's failed reelection.

    If he ignores this, I don't care how good he is at bashing unions or spending cuts, he will give up about half the gun vote by default.

  • zubaz||

    If Governor Christie has any aspirations to higher office, or even thinks he someday might have them, he will do himself a large favor by allowing the appeals process to play itself out before inserting himself into due process of law.

  • ||

    This seems extremely unfair. Who can we send e-mails to protest this?

  • PIRS||

    "Even the jurors who convicted him seem to have been looking for a reason to acquit him."

    This is why we need to educate more people about Jury Nullification.
    http://fija.org/

  • ||

    In the news today, the sky is blue, Elvis is dead, and New Jersey is a third world shithole.

  • ||

    Civil war is coming. And soon. Are you ready?

  • ||

    NJ, I laugh...
    My entire life I've heard the stereotypes about Southerners being "backwards", "ignorant" and just plain old "stupid". So, imagine my surprise when I left NJ for NC after the better part of 40 years only to find that these "Southerners" are actually more forward thinking than the entire judicial system and the majority of the electorate in NJ. This judge and prosecutor should be terminated immediately! It's high time the Congress of these United States puts forth legislation for uniform gun laws so that those like me can continue being law abiding citizens when it comes to gun ownership.

  • ||

    I drive thru New Jersey all the time with a LOADED handgun in a holster fastened to my seat in my Volvo Tractor (I do long haul trucking). Been stopped a few times, but the D.O.T. has never said anything about it, even after doing a safety check.

  • ||

    I am not joking when I ask this...why do people still live in NJ? Highest taxes in the US, oppressive, intrusive government, expensive cost of living, and crappy weather. I moved to Atlanta 20 yrs ago and never looked back. The 2nd Amendment says

    "A well regulated Militia, being necessary to the security of a free State, the right of the people to keep and bear Arms, shall not be infringed."

    Shall not be infringed!?!? That's reason enough to acquit. The Gov should grant a full pardon.

  • ||

    Thanks Mom, you fucking idiot. I bet she is a liberal democrap who is part of the nanny state solution. If she was so concerned, why didn't she confront her son? Why call 911? What an idiot, I hope she takes the guilt to her grave!

  • ||

    This gutted whore should hang herself. What a piece of shit she is.

  • ||

    It's unlawful rulings and laws like this that make a state malitia so incredibly important. The judge in the case may not be able to be procecuted for his unlawful act but persecuted... HELLYEAH!

  • ||

    "It makes a criminal of every gun owner and forces him to prove his innocence."
    =============
    Now he knows what it is like to be Muslim and accused of being a Terrorist!

  • ||

    muslims are terrorist and mohammed wore panties, Fuck that death cult dirty faux religion, go stone some women to death.

  • mike||

    This person was obviously not aware of the very strict NJ gun law in regard to the transportation of firearms.

    It is my understanding that, in general,you are not allowed to keep firearms in your car. You can transport them to/from the range, the gunsmith, or a gun store.

    Apparently you can also transport them between residences. I will add a small question mark here as I think you are required to immediately register all firearms with the new township that you have moved into.

    If you move into a new apt, the apt owner must ok the guns as he/she may be questioned by the police in the course of the new gun id change of address request. Another complication is if the new apt landlord doesn't want to permit or allow you to have firearms in his/her building.

    When you transport a firearm in your car, you should have paperwork (copy of permit and copy of pink slip) with you to prove that you are the owner of the item. Also, perhaps a copy of where you are allegedly going (store, range) to prove that you are not joyriding with a 9mm in the trunk.

    I be there are some gunowners in NJ who keep a small gun in the car. Some business owners have guns as protection. Is the gun owner permitted to have the firearm beyond the business premises, like to the business owners vehicle?

    Many business owners have to make bank deposits of cash. That would be a good reason to want the firearm in the car. But, there is a no-carry rule. So, the business owner can't really move the firearm from the business to the car on a daily basis. Or can he?

    I think gun transport may be a grey area or a questionable area of law based on the current Nj gun laws regarding transportation of firearms.

    I understand that many gun owners don't bother to carry paperwork with them, but they are at risk of being arrested.

    I also agree that these laws are too cumbersome and complicated. I am just reiterating the law as I understand it from my gunsmith. We are deemed to be guilty until proven innocent when it comes to firearm ownership in NJ.

  • Mike K||

    Why must the police or the
    Government make you account for where your property goes? What ever happened to the trust in the law abiding citizen? When elected officials distrust the electorate (citizen) who put them in office then something is way out of balance. The people of New Jersey have lived so long under tyranny they don't know what it is.

  • ||

    I can not imagine being crazy enough to live in a police state like NJ.

    It is much worse than I even imagined.

  • brian||

    What a piece of shit fucking state.

  • rds||

    The reporter should have researched a lot better then is reflected in this article. there are many mistakes based on non-existence interpitation of the laws.

  • ||

    A message to Jeff Goldman... The FBI conducted a study of States where it's citizen's are reconized thier Second Amendment rights to carry handguns for protection and states with draconian gun laws such as New Jersey and New York and guess what? Violent Crime goes down where people are able to exercise thier 2nd Amendment rights where violent crime goes up where people are denied thier right to bear arms. Look it up!

  • Pennsylvanian||

    Ah New joisey. Just another reason never to go to that ****hole ever again. Funny how Camden's crime rate is higher than Philadelphia's despite 29x more gun laws or so...

  • Dave Smith||

    The incredibly sad thing here is that it is obvious the judge was biased toward the defendant from the get go....not allowing the telephone testimony meant only one thing....they wanted to'fry' this guy.....Mr. Aitken should go to civil court if he possibly could......I mean when you got a police officer's testimony backing you as the defendant...what more can you possibly need....Mr. Aitken may or may not have a previous criminal history...but if he did and it was something not the liking of the county or the presiding judge ...he may be screwed....these are the sort of events that only elevate tension between the public and the government...worst case scenario for Mr. Aitken should have been the troopers confiscating his guns and storing them at the precinct and maybe issuing him a measley citation

  • ||

    Justice served. If this had been an african american male and had taken place in Jersey city or Camden (instead of mt. laurel), with the exact same set of facts, there would be no expectation of a pardon or restitution to Mr. Aitken from the state for "emotional stess". He made a mistake and now he has to deal with the consequences just like anyone else.

  • Leroy||

    Oh Jesus H Christ you fucking race baiting piece of shit.

    Had this happened to ANY American my response and the response of those on this website would be the same.

    Go fucking rot.

  • Leroy||

    Oh Jesus H Christ you fucking race baiting piece of shit.

    Had this happened to ANY American my response and the response of those on this website would be the same.

    Go fucking rot.

  • Richard||

    Man, if people quit the race thing maybe we could get a common understanding of this crap so the creeps who now "govern" us can be removed. Justice was not served in this case. The man did nothing wrong. Reason and common sense tells you this. Shame on the "JURY" members.

    This is excessive power by an anti-gun gang in high ranking positions - Mr Aitken was wrongly accused and this has gone way too far. I hope the NRA is doing something about it. What about Gov Christie? Hello? Do you have time for one man's wrong conviction? You should have! It's innocent until proven guilty, and the laws must be constitutional! Get a pardon from him and dismiss all those in power who drove this to trial. Oh and I guess the jurors need an education in constitutional law.

    I live in NY - upstate. I have a handgun that I inherited from my dad. It was not on my permit, so I took it to our local police who stored it for me. NO THEY DIDN'T ARREST ME!!!! I did it so I wouldn't have an illegal handgun. I had it registered on my permit, and then I went to them and they gave it back to me with "have a nice day". That's in upstate NY. What the HELL is going on in New Jersey? NY gun laws are pretty restrictive, but they are not insane. NJ needs a 2nd Amendment revolution - you know, like the DC vs Heller case. NJ's laws are unconstitutional. It's common sense. Stop crying about racism and start standing up for the constitution - then the prejudicial carp will end too....if there's much of that going on anymore. I'm sick of the race card. We're Americans. Let's act like it. As far as Islam, the fact that a man can stab his wife and cut off her head because of "family honor" according to shria law is the reason I'd die in a gunfight with fundamental Islamists to keep my country the USA free of such an incredibly stupid set of religious dung that stinks in God's nostrils. He will vindicate such garbage one day.....

  • ||

    Police don't resolve problems, they create them. And the woman notifying the police is about as ignorant as the police themselves.

  • ||

    He didn't make a mistake. the jurors in this case made a mistake. it is our responsibility to be the final judge regardless of the law; we decide the law; not the system. the jurors claim they were looking for a reason to acquit him; they don't need a reason; they are supposed to decide as they feel.. period.

  • rra||

    this story is why NJ is referred to CORRECTLY, as the "People's Republic of New Jersey." ....And why I moved to Maine.

  • ||

    just goes to show how stupid jurors are in new jersey,do any of them know how to read the constitution and bill of rights,
    a good citizen not convicted of any crimes,not a felon in possesion of a firearm "IS INNOCENT OF A GUN CRIME"WAKE THE HELL UP LIBERAL AMERICA
    "this jury would have found rosa parks guilty and put her in jail,the constitution and bill of rights trumps all federal and state law period...does anyone remember the names of the cops or judge who violated rosa parks rights,,of course not and why would we,a juror only need ask themselves one question,,whos right were being violated by brian aitkin,,answer no ones....judge is an idiot and so is the jury totally un-american

  • ||

    While living in PA I had a permit to carry. In 2004 when I moved to NJ and had to forfeit that permit, I was horrified at NJ's guns laws. They ARE ...somthing. But having said this, I don't think Brian acted responsibily at ALL. I agree that driving around with guns locked in your trunk violates the states gun laws so I believe he committed a felony. Now..should be be in prison. HELL no! I did the same thing as Brian...read the laws before moving but I drove straight to my new residence and unloaded them before unloading anything else. Lastly, I know a young person, who was found guilty of "possession". He had a PA permit, came to NJ and had a loaded gun under his seat. He also was a first time offender and received 5 yrs. probabation. Sounds to me like Brian didn't want to accept the felony (or any deal) so the judge threw the book at him. Although I cringe saying this, I think the judge was right in saying the exception didn't apply here! To make a point, I'd even agree to 6 months (he'd be out in 2) but YEARS? Come on!

  • ||

    While living in PA I had a permit to carry. In 2004 when I moved to NJ and had to forfeit that permit, I was horrified at NJ's guns laws. They ARE ...somthing. But having said this, I don't think Brian acted responsibily at ALL. I agree that driving around with guns locked in your trunk violates the states gun laws so I believe he committed a felony. Now..should be be in prison. HELL no! I did the same thing as Brian...read the laws before moving but I drove straight to my new residence and unloaded them before unloading anything else. Lastly, I know a young person, who was found guilty of "possession". He had a PA permit, came to NJ and had a loaded gun under his seat. He also was a first time offender and received 5 yrs. probabation. Sounds to me like Brian didn't want to accept the felony (or any deal) so the judge threw the book at him. Although I cringe saying this, I think the judge was right in saying the exception didn't apply here! To make a point, I'd even agree to 6 months (he'd be out in 2) but YEARS? Come on!

  • ||

    The sad truth is that many prosecutors believe a person is guilty if they can obtain a conviction. Calling the police can easily become a search of the premises, a search for outstanding warrants, etc.

  • ||

    On Mon. 20DEC, Gov. Christie announced Brian will be freed!!!
    Next he needs to completely remove the conviction & restore Brian's rights. An apology & some $$$ will be nice, too, as would seeing the ex-judge, the DA, & the cops involved all prosecuted for federal civil rights crimes (among other things).

    I noticed nowhere in this article did it actually opine about what Brian's mistake was. I can see 3: 1) moving to NJ. 2) going back to his parent's house when the cops called. 3) giving in to their coercion and allowing them to search his car. If they have to ask permission, they don't have probable cause for a search (and vice versa).

    I hope one of his Xmas presents is a video/voice recorder, & that he carries it all the time. Hopefully he'll never have another run-in w/ police, but if he does he should use it.

  • Mike K||

    This is a fine example of over regulation and judicial activism thrown into one neatly bound case. For a judge not to err on the side of prudence but rather blind a jury into convicting a seemingly innocent man is unbelievable. I find it ghastly that one is regulated to the point that the mere prescense of a firearm, properly stored and locked in a case, can be percieved as a illegally possessed weapon. The fact that the people of New Jersey have let it come down to this is mind boggling. This showes the depth of distrust that the State of New Jersey has for the citizens who make it possible for Government to exist. If it were me I would try to organize to replace the untrusting elected officials with ones who believe that the power of the individual is more powerful than that of the bureaucrat. We saw a revolutions of sorts in last Nov. elections. We need to see those chnges come about in the city and state governments as well. If not you will see more of these types of cases where the burden of truth falls upon the State to prove guilty and justice is truly blind to prejudice.

  • Joe||

    The Lord says, " we must live by the laws of this land " , but the thing must people don't understand is that this land is a land of darkness where a light shines on it for now for the sick, poor and needy...
    Where few to none will repent accepting that they are one of those ...
    So darkness upholds the law of this land and my what darkness seeks to uphold and push abroad ...
    It can only truely hurt those that push it in the unjust and unfair way...

  • ||

    This is a classic example of a judge with his head buried in his rectum.
    There is absolutley no logic in this entire incident...
    Thank God I have lived in California and now Texas where reason still prevails...

  • ||

    If you have an intelligent comment you'd like to share with the Governor of New Jersey here is his URL: http://www.state.nj.us/governor/contact/
    I don't know about replies but I just sent them/him some of my thoughts.

  • Col. Korn||

    That Figgures, New Jersey Asshats! Guilty until proven innocent! and lets not forget their "Catch22", "We are confiscating your property pending an investigation into possible criminal intent...if we do not find "Possible criminal intent" then you can have your property back after 6 Months".

    Thats right people, New Jersey is a Police State and now that you finally have a Governour that isnt an Ass-hat you need to use this time to start making some changes! Support him and Vote Republican!

    Your Obt. Svt.,
    Col. Korn,
    Chief o Mayhem in the great WW2 and also in the Cold War,
    Currently in Charge o Security and waste removal,
    OXOjamm Studios,
    WWW.OXOjamm.Com

  • ||

    THIS CASE is apalling starting with the arrest of BRIAN AITKEN. I was borned and raised in TENNESSEE and I cannot believe this type of communist military state law enforcement exists in THE UNITED STATES.. AITKEN'S ARREST IS SO ANTI-AMERICAN AND A JURY CONVICTION TO BOOT, MAKES ME WONDER IF THE COMMUNISTS ARE RUNNING NEW JERSEY...TO SIMPLIFY MATTERS THE GOVERNOR SHOULD PARDON HIM , IMMEDIATELY. A HORRIBLE CIVIL RIGHTS VIOLATION.

  • Pete||

    Nancydrew has be smoking something. To agree that someone carrying a locked and unloaded gun in the trunk of their car is guilty of anything has to be on drugs. Is it any wonder people are flocking to SOUTH CAROLINA (the state where I was born, raised, and will die)in droves when you read about the stupid, senseless laws that make criminals out of gun owners. There are way to many Hillary Clinton types in this country. Thank God they don't want to move south! If the governor in our state was to act as slowly, or as in this case not act, to correct this very wrong headed decision she would be run out of office. Thank you Lord for making me SOUTHERN! Ya'll have just affirmed my thoughts that I have no need to visit anywhere north of Virginia.

  • Robert Hill||

    Wildwood used to be a yearly vacation spot. I won't set foot in or spend a penny in the state of New Jersey as a conscientious gun owner.

  • Dr M. V.||

    Afterall, Mother's do not know best, and should stay out of their adult childerns life when handling affairs of a dissolved marriage. Mother's and no one else, for that matter, are not qualified to know who is despondent or who is not....I will avoid NJ like the plague....

  • ||

    What a sad state of affairs in this country when law abiding or at least, citizens attempting to abide by the laws are treated this way. Besides the stigma this young man now has, I cannot imagine the financial penalty for his defense.
    A criminal might easily be treated better and not even have to pay for his counsel.
    Guess I will stay out of New Joysey.

  • ||

    The man should have NEVER been arrested in the first place. He had checked with the state before leaving Colorado and had the firearms locked in lockboxes, locked in the trunk of the car; as the law states that he should do. They should turn him loose, with a full pardon, pay him full pay however much he might have made working while in jail, and the arresting officer and especially the judge should lose their johs and be jailed themselves for violating his civil rights. But, I guess we don't have any of those any more!!!!!!

  • H Lee ||

    New Jersey is known all over the country for its crooked corporations. Rip offs of the public like Norvergence for example. If burglars want a safe state to rob in then they should go to New Jersey. They will only have to deal with the police. The people of NJ deserve the problems that they get for being stupid enough to elect officials that will take away all of their rights. The juries are the ones are led blindly by corrupt or prejudiced officials usually, the DA, and the public ends up paying the price. Juries that give 6 million dollars for someone that spills hot coffee in their lap are the fools that create monsters. The problem with the courts, judges and juries is that they will not, can not or too ignorant to separate justice from the law. We have become a nation of fools. NJ is a prime example.

  • ||

    Remind me to never move to New Jersey.

  • ||

    New Jersey needs an enema like New Orleans got.

  • قبلة الوداع||

    thank u

  • Daniel||

    After reading several of the above comments I have this to say; First off, don't blame the cops and stop bad mouthing them. Not saying they are all perfect, but just like in any other job there are good ones and bad ones. No one is perfect! It sounds as if in this case they were just doing their job under the current law. Which brings me to my next point...the law. Gun laws in many states, New Jersey in particular, not to mention NY, Illinois, and several others are blatantly unconstitutional and put an undue burden on normally law-bidding citizens. But you have to ask yourself, who made these laws and who put these people into office to begin with??? It really gripes my a#$ when I hear someone complaining about the way things are and then to find out they didn't bother to vote, or voted for someone and didn't do their research on what this person stood for and what their track record in the past was when it came down to voting on these types of laws. The people who passed these laws are the very one we put into office. If you don't like what they've done then go to the polls and vote them the H@ll out of office and get someone in there that will change things.

  • ||

    I am really glad Judge Morley lost his job as he wasn't doing his job!

  • دردشه عراقية||

    Thanks

  • _EasyDoesIt||

    Mr. Aitken's predicament confirmed some of my concerns and surprised me in several respects. I was surprised that New Jersey already has the kinds of laws that I think are needed. My concerns about unfair enforcement are also evident here, like the case of the US Marine being held in Mexico. Mr. Aitken's mother was correct in calling the police. A mother with her professional experience and concerns about her son's emotional state, domestic issues, and in possession of guns warranted a call for intervention. It is also clear that people be protected from irreversible unjust actions by authorities. Strong sentencing should be an option but not be mandatory to allow for leniency and individualized judgements in cases like this one. If anything Mr. Aitken should have lost his right to posses guns for seven years but not his freedom. I would hope this case will be corrected on appeal. The mass shootings we have seen, in particular the murder of so many children while at school, should focus gun owners on their collective obligation to do everything that can be done to put a stop to this. If you choose to own guns fine, but you, not the rest of us, and certainly not our children should be faced with the risks and any inconvenience that possessing guns creates. For those that argue criminals don't follow the rules; with much tougher regulation and enforcement of gun possession there will be fewer and fewer criminals who carry guns with time on their hands outside of prison.

  • Arthur Vee||

    Anyone who knows Brian knows that he is just an awful, awful person. Giving him this sort of soapbox has just made him more of a jerk. Constitutional rights aside, this "man" deserves none of this acclaim.

  • closer71||

    Sound like his mother is a complete f-ing idiot. Who calls 911 to rat out their own son when he hasn't done anything wrong? I suppose nobody is allowed to be upset anymore -- "Take your Prozac and shut the hell up!" says Obama and the police state terrorists.

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