Tuesday, November 23, 2010

Maine man sentenced to three-months for gun trafficking

Randy Goodwin, of Acton, Maine, needed to earn some extra money to support his five children. So, he decided to sell guns. Randy, a law abiding citizen with no criminal record, bought guns from a licensed dealer in Waterboro and sold them through the pages of the classified bulletin Uncle Henry's.
Between September 2009 to January 2010 Goodwin sold almost 100 handguns to Joseph Burns, of Lynn, Massachusetts, a convicted felon. Soon after these sales several guns traced to Goodwin were seized by police during arrests in Lynn.
At his sentencing hearing, Goodwin told the judge he did not know he was breaking the law and that he lives in fear that one of the guns he sold has been used to commit a violent crime.
"He had to know that something was wrong," said Judge D. Brock Hornby, "Even though he didn't know his conduct was illegal. All of the warning bells should have been going off."
Judge Hornby sentenced Goodwin to three months in prison, two years of probation, and ordered him to participate in community service by speaking publicly about state and federal gun laws.
Maine law allows for the private sale of guns where there will be no criminal background check run on the buyer and no records kept of the sale. Uncle Henry's, the publication where Goodwin sold his handguns, frequently runs half page ads from Project Safe Neighborhood that detail federal gun laws and clearly state that these laws prohibit you from selling a gun to someone who lives out of state or is a convicted felon.
Massachusetts strictly regulates the sale of guns. As a consequence, the trafficking of firearms between Maine and Massachusetts is a significant problem.

Sunday, November 21, 2010

Man shoots at wife and father-in-law

43-year-old David Minnick of Somers, Wisconsin is a law abiding citizen with no prior criminal record. Last Monday he began questioning his wife about another man. When she told him she planned to leave him he ran inside their home, got a gun and came after his wife. His wife ran across the street to her parents' house and hid inside while they called the police.
Minnick tried to break into his in-laws' house and shot at his father-in-law.
"The flash from the end of the barrel actually sprayed by back. That's how close he was to me," said the father-in-law.
Minnick went back to his house and barricaded himself inside. After several hours he surrendered to police.

Thursday, November 18, 2010

Wisconsin man shoots television, causes 15-hour police standoff

67-year-old Steven Cowan of Vermont, Wisconsin is a law abiding citizen with a clean criminal record.  Monday night he sat down to watch "Dancing with the Stars" with his wife.  When Bristol Palin, daughter of vice presidential candidate Sarah Palin, began her routine Cowan jumped up and began swearing, upset because he felt the girl had no talent.
According to his wife, Cowan went upstairs for 20 minutes and returned carrying a loaded shotgun. He blasted the television then pointed the gun at his wife and told her to go get his pistols. His daughter had recently taken away his handguns for safety reasons.
His wife left the house and called the police. A SWAT team surrounded the house and officers were able to talk Cowan out after an all-night standoff.
According to his wife, Cowan is under stress because of financial problems, suffers from bipolar disorder, and was drinking the night of the incident. She also told police that 15 years ago Cowan threatened her with a machete when he couldn't find some ammunition and he has threatened to shoot one of their cows.