seattletimes.nwsource.com: “In an effort to reduce gun violence in Seattle, U.S. Attorney Jenny Durkan [above] announced Monday that her office will push to prosecute more defendants accused of committing gun crimes.” Ladies and gentlemen, I give you the true definition of “common sense” gun control: control the people who use guns illegally. As in lock them up on a federal beef. Quite why The Emerald City has come to its senses, opting for a punitive rather than a prohibitive approach to a recent spate of gang-related homicides is anybody’s guess. It’s certainly a come-to-Moses moment for longtime gun grabber (first time caller) Mayor McGinn, who joined US AG Durkan on the podium for the “your ass is mine” warning to the Seattle’s gang bangers. And quite a refreshing bit of politicking it was too, relying heavily on the catchphrase used by TV detective Beretta . . .
“We are here today to send a clear message: if you use a gun in a crime, you will do more time. You will do federal time,” Durkan said during a news conference at the King County prosecutor’s office in Seattle. “We will continue to work with organizations, the community and local law enforcement to address ways to prevent these crimes. We cannot prosecute our way out of this problem. But we will prosecute those who are the problem.”
Durkan and several other law enforcement officials announced additional efforts to get tough on crimes involving firearms, including seeking legislation to toughen penalties for juveniles accused of gun crimes. Others speaking during the news conference were Seattle Mayor Mike McGinn, King County Prosecuting Attorney Dan Satterberg, Deputy Police Chief Nick Metz and Kelvin Crenshaw, special agent in charge of the Seattle office of the federal Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.
[Talk about a “come to Jesus” moment; that’s the same Deputy Police Chief Nick Metz who blamed guns for the outbreak of shooting.]
Satterberg noted that state penalties for felons convicted of possessing a firearm are too lenient.
Federal penalties include up to 10 years for being a felon with a gun, a five-year mandatory minimum for carrying a gun to a drug deal, and a 15-year mandatory minimum federal prison sentence for defendants with three prior violent felonies or drug crimes. In addition to significant prison time, officials said federal prosecution results in more rigorous supervision by federal probation officers when felons are released.
Seattle’s sudden reliance on the federales to clean up Dodge City (or thereabouts) raises disquieting questions about the line between local and federal law enforcement. Especially as the initiative involves the Fast and Furious agents of the sting (i.e. entrapment) crazed ATF.
At the same time, it’s worth noting that Seattle’s po-po are under a cloud for “excessive force” (controversial surveillance video above). A meteorological event that AG Durkan herself helped create with her highly critical report on the force. Which may account for the policing
Still, one can only hope that the move signals a “lock ’em up Dano” law enforcement trend for gang members gone wild (and ballistic). It’s what the NRA’s been calling for since ever. Now, let’s see if it works, ’cause if it does, look for federal firearms prosecutions to amp-up near you soon.
Is that a good thing or a bad thing? Yes. Yes it is.