New Jersey Comic Faces 10 Years in Prison for Airsoft Prop

“[New Jersey comic and actor] Carlo Bellario was filming scenes for an independent film in a residential neighborhood in November in a role he took on for free and the chance to be entered in the Internet Movie Database,” foxnews.com reports. “His character was a drug dealer’s bodyguard, and Bellario toted a realistic-looking airsoft gun that was meant to fool big screen viewers one day.” Guess who turned out to be the fool when neighbors called 911? “As an actor, I’m not required to make sure that the producer has all the proper permits,” Bellario says. Nice try. And for his trouble . . .

Bellario was handcuffed, arrested and charged with weapons possession under New Jersey’s strict gun laws, which say any weapon that fires projectile – even if it is just a pellet – is a firearm . . .

He did a four-day stint in the Middlesex County Jail, where he was held on $10,000 bail. The movie’s producers backed out of their promise to pay his bond, he said . . .

The trip to the lockup was just the beginning. Until his court situation in resolved, he is not allowed to leave the state, he said.

“That means I can’t go on the road for comedy gigs,” he said. “I can’t earn any money.”

Bellario is still trying to raise money for his legal fees. He started Go Fund Me page, where he has raised nearly $4,000. Facing up to five [ED: ten] years in prison, Bellario also says that he is also having trouble finding a lawyer willing to take on his case and hopes that someone is willing to work pro bono.

“No one wants to touch it for less than $10,000,” he said referring to his search for legal representation.

What criminal intent is involved here? Exactly none.

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie is no longer running for President. He no longer needs to bolster his pro-gun creds by pardoning more Americans whose only crime was exercising their natural, civil and Constitutionally protected right to keep and bear arms in a state that refuses to recognize same. So, will he pardon Mr. Bellario?

Otherwise, Mr. Bellario will be generating new material from behind bars. For years. And his gun rights will be gone forever. All the more reason Congress needs to wait until after a Republican president assumes office before approving a Supreme Court nominee. Know what I mean?

comments

  1. avatar jwtaylor says:

    These are the laws passed by the elected citizens of NJ. Zero pardon. And we need to make sure that every kid with an airsoft gun, bb gun pellet gun, marshmellow gun, whatever, gets arrested and tried as an adult.
    NJ, this is what you wanted. This is what you get.

    1. avatar TroyBilt says:

      Its easy to blame the voters when you are not one of them.

      Do you deserve Obama ‘s executive orders? Do you deserve a president that acts like a dictator? I think not!

      1. avatar Anonymous says:

        Its easy to blame the voters when you are not one of them.

        The majority of the people of NJ voted for it. The minority accepted it, and did nothing. Such is democracy. Democracy’s purpose is to ensure stability by always favoring the majority of the people to enforce their opinions on the minority.

        Do you deserve Obama ‘s executive orders? Do you deserve a president that acts like a dictator? I think not!

        Yes we deserve it. We allowed the majority to rule over us. We accepted it. Every moment that you accept to be a part of the system, you accept to be ruled by the majority. SocialContract101.

        1. avatar Eye-roller says:

          Except that a) this isn’t a “democracy”, it’s a republic, and
          b) the majority has no right to impose restrictions such as NJ’s in violation of the 2nd Amendment.

        2. avatar WedelJ says:

          It sounds like NJ is fitting the description of a Democracy more than a Republic. Kind of how The People’s Republic of China is nothing of the sort.

        3. avatar Anonymous says:

          Except that a) this isn’t a “democracy”, it’s a republic…

          Our republic is marginally better than a democracy. We elect representatives to vote in our stead. The passing of laws is a democratic process where the majority choose what actions the minority will be forced to take. In the absence of freedom minded representatives, it really is no better than an Ochlocracy.

          b) the majority has no right to impose restrictions such as NJ’s in violation of the 2nd Amendment.

          And who’s going to stop them?

        4. avatar Stuki Moi says:

          “We” have not “accepted” it, any more than those gassed in the camps, “accepted” their social contract by being a minority in the election that got the Nazis elected.

          But, perhaps they did accept it, as well. On some very fundamental level, people are responsible for their own fate. Jefferson wanted a revolution per generation, to make sure we didn’t end up in this kind of dystopia. The Afghans have largely followed his advice, and they don’t suffer under nearly the same size government we do. But the failure of previous generations to take Jefferson to heed, has made it exponentially more difficult for us to do it now. If they instead had done their duty, and blown the clowns away on a consistent basis, like the Afghans do, the enemy we faced wouldn’t have been nearly as powerful as it currently is.

          As it stands now, I doubt we’ll ever get around to reverse the decline, until the level of dysfunction reaches a level allowing outsiders (like fertile Afghans needing more “lebensraum”) to help us out.

        5. avatar Roymond says:

          @ Stuki Moi

          Just to keep the record straight, the Nazis were never elected. They got into power using Tea Party tactics of never approving anything the government wanted. Under our system some things can still get done, but under Weimar Germany it shut down the whole thing — in essence, there was no government because th4e Nazis had just enough elected people to prevent anyone from having a majority. To end the impasse, Hitler was accepted as Chancellor, giving him police powers. It was the use of those police powers that got the Nazis into power, not election by a majority.

          It’s a good demonstration about how a democratic system can be taken over by far less than a majority.

      2. avatar Raul Ybarra says:

        Individually? No. I don’t.

        Corporately as the American People? Yes. I think we do.

        It is we the people that elected him. It is we the people that allowed Congress to neglect to properly regulate the federal courts that allow such laws to stand. It is we the people that kept our mouths shut and our heads down for decades because we didn’t want to offend others or be criticized. It is we the people that abdicated control of our education system to a Progressive elite so that not only is the next generation unaware of the above, they are willing to give up their liberty for even more of it.

        So yes, we do. And we have a lot of hard work and sacrifice to make amends for those sins.

    2. avatar Tex300BLK says:

      Yep, my first thought when I read the headline was “Good”. It sucks that this guy is arrested and facing time, but it’s time for elected officials to have to start explaining incidents like this to their constituents; that yes, the intent of the law means that some ordinary guy can get arrested and the book thrown at him for carrying around a toy, meanwhile the protected classes run around shooting the place up with real guns with nothing done about it. The more people who see that happening the more people will (hopefully) wake the fvck up and start thinking before they vote.

    3. avatar Gov. William J Le Petomane says:

      The difference between a democracy and a constitutional republic is that the latter puts limitations on majority rule. This law clearly violates the US Constitution if not New Jersey’s and therefore should be struck down regardless of the voters’ will. Beyond that, a jury could nullify the law by refusing to convict, but that jury would be made up of New Jersey voters. And with the SCOTUS now split 4-4, he’s probably screwed.

    4. avatar Mr Pierogie says:

      Piss off JWT. So if you’re state legislature passes some ridiculous anti-gun law and you get popped, should I be cheering the po-po on as they drag you away, simply because some leftist idiots who outnumber you voted for that law?

      1. avatar Defens says:

        +1

        Had a small minority of colonists shared that attitude, we’d still be loyal British subjects.

        1. avatar Mr Pierogie says:

          Pretty much. I though our rights were protected regardless. Tyranny of the majority, anyone? Also, I can’t spell. I meant to type ‘your’, not ‘you’re’ above.

      2. avatar CLarson says:

        “Democracy is the theory that the common people know what they want, and deserve to get it good and hard.”
        H. L. Mencken

        Hopefully Carlo Bellario gets a sympathetic jury and not a bunch of apparatchiks who blindly follow a stupid law. I could never find a man guilty deserving 5 to 10 for a playing make believe with a toy.

  2. avatar Mark N. says:

    The headline says ten years, the story says five. Which is it?

    1. avatar Robert Farago says:

      He’s looking at five to ten.

  3. avatar Paul53 says:

    Pass stupid laws, get stupid results.

  4. avatar Ralph says:

    As an film actor, Bellario should reach out to movie producer Harvey Weinstein, who (as we all know) is a great proponent of human rights.

  5. avatar TravisP says:

    Common sense gun laws in action

  6. avatar Wrightl3 says:

    Will New Jersey ever rejoin America?

    1. avatar Raul Ybarra says:

      No, but we may some day re-conquer them and annex them back into the Union.

  7. avatar James I. says:

    Jeez, You’d think the AO would of made a different call on this considering the victim compared to the person at fault, looks like a witch trial may ensue for new jersey (At least most people with common sense would see the flaw in NJ Law on this).

  8. avatar pwrserge says:

    So… Anybody else think that voting doesn’t matter?

    1. avatar Anonymous says:

      If you are a minority of the topic voted upon – no it doesn’t matter.

      1. avatar pwrserge says:

        Given that most people don’t vote, even a minority can swing the election in the right direction.

        1. avatar NWGlocker says:

          ^this. Get our collective butts in gear and go VOTE

        2. avatar East Slope Charlie says:

          In 2 counties I’ve lived in, elections were won by SINGLE DIGITS — people or ordinances — didn’t matter – SINGLE digits made the difference in the out come -and I mean EVERY YEAR IN AT LEAST 4 ‘THINGS THAT MATTERED ENOUGH TO BE VOTED ON — often by less than FIVE votes –

          And you thought your vote didn’t matter. I’ll tell you there is a definition of a ‘road surface’ that has ranchers spending hundreds of thousands of dollars they don’t have over the next 10 years to ‘pave’ (press gravel) roads they MAY use twice a year — once to deliver cattle and once to move them to sale – and most didn’t want to drive the 30 miles to vote – and they lost by 3 votes. THREE votes — FOR ‘paving all surface roads on public land in x county by the year 2025.’ – had 3 ranchers driven 1 mile or 30 miles to vote – or voted by mail — they’d not have to ‘pave’ the roads on their leased BLM roads that they use twice a year with gravel at $2500 a load. PLUS equipment and labor to spread and ‘press’ it into the dirt surface. That, or ‘abandoned’ the road by double berming and ‘raking’ the first 100 yards of each end of the road. Ouch. 3 votes.

    2. avatar Ralph says:

      I live in Massachusetts, so my vote doesn’t matter, not even a little. And I’m still going to vote, for the same reason that I’m going to buy another gun — because I can.

      1. avatar LongPurple says:

        Same here. Even if I have to hold my nose.

  9. avatar ActionPhysicalMan says:

    I so love malum prohibitum laws.

  10. avatar DavidinNC says:

    New Jersey. Guns. Enough said.

  11. avatar Andrew Lias says:

    Here is hoping Chris does the right thing. If anything his producer should take the heat because he should have gotten the legal side squared away.

  12. avatar Ben B says:

    Who was the victim of this ‘crime’? Besides the easily offended offensive state of new jersey, that is…

    1. avatar P. Villa says:

      Victim? … Victim? … We don’t need no steekin’ victim! We got laws!

  13. avatar Mr Pierogie says:

    Didn’t Christie say he’s this huge 2A supporter and has made NJ gun laws less onerous? I’m sure he was boasting before about how much he has done for the NJ gun owners. Except that he has never done anything substantial. And now that he’s out of the race, he’ll do even less. Like I said before, Christie is fine with the way things are in NJ. He doesn’t care about the 2A, unless it’s in his favor. This ridiculous story is more proof that the incredibly restrictive laws and harsh punishments are here to stay. Politically, it makes no difference now whether he pardons somebody like that or not, so he might not do it if need be. Oh and btw, I told you so.

    1. avatar Gov. William J Le Petomane says:

      You are assuming that Christie has no intentions of ever running again. But this is a good litmus test to see if he was full of BS about supporting the 2A. There is a precedent for governors to let the courts work it out before stepping in, but if this guy is convicted and he doesn’t pardon him he can forget about ever being president.

    2. avatar LongPurple says:

      This is one NJ resident (at present) who will be watching that situation closely.

  14. avatar CTstooge says:

    I wish Andrew ‘Dice’ Clay Jr. only the best.

  15. avatar Sian says:

    I smell another Christie pardon.

  16. avatar uncommon_sense says:

    What criminal intent is involved here? Exactly none. That comedian defied the whims and dictates of the ruling class. It’s too bad he wasn’t making a propaganda film whose purpose was to usher in draconian gun-control: then the local prosecutor would refuse to prosecute the man since, “it would not serve the public interest”. (Reference David Gregory felony possession of a 30-round magazine in Washington D.C. as a “prop”.)

    1. avatar Anonymous says:

      Uncommon – it’s a crime against the state. The state is the victim. haha.

  17. avatar Tom in Oregon says:

    This is a good reminder to never step foot in NJ.

    1. avatar Ralph says:

      I have a better reminder for ya — Newark.

  18. avatar NWGlocker says:

    In other news, a certain news anchor flaunts a non-replica firearm magazine, and commits a crime (felony?). And gets away with it.

  19. avatar Milsurp Collector says:

    The other two pardons by Christie dealt with real firearms, and he absolutely will (eventually) pardon this guy because the quoted article is dead wrong. Airsoft guns are not treated as firearms here. I’ve personally been to three brick and mortar shops in the past four years that carry all things airsoft, no 4473 forms required. If it’s your typical BB or pellet gun then yes, it counts as a firearm in NJ, which is already seven shades of shit, but airsoft has always been exempt. I doubt this guy was threatening anybody. What most likely happened is the cops overreacted to the panicked sheep’s 911 call because they’re not used to scenarios involving guns unless it involves real criminal activity, because so few people in NJ own guns. In the suburban/urban sectors almost none of the cops are POTG or know anything about NJ’s utterly convoluted laws to begin with, so they always carry a “GUN = CONVICTION” mentality.

    1. avatar Benzo says:

      Curious if removing the orange tip from the airsoft gun (so it appears to be a real firearm on film) would turn it into a “firearm” in the eyes of NJ law…

      1. avatar Milsurp Collector says:

        Not sure, but everyone who wasn’t a noob at high school airsoft gatherings broke off or spray painted the orange parts. If we were going to an official venue that required them, kids got creative with spray paint or neon duct tape and the refs let it pass. No idea how that would relate to this guy’s unique predicament, but as I said the article is wrong. If the aspiring Christie does not pardon this man for possession of what in the eyes of NJ law is a plastic toy, it would be an colossal embarrassment for him and his campaign hopes.

  20. avatar LongPurple says:

    It’s a GD shame that the only real hope to see justice done, in the face of a stupid law like this, is another intervention by the Governor. That radical a step should not be necessary in any state that honors the 2nd Amendment, as is required under the 14th Amendment.
    High taxes, dwindling employment opportunity, and other economic conditions are reason enough for New Jersey to lead in citizens leaving for other states. Stupid gun laws just add to the incentive to leave.

  21. avatar Soccerchainsaw says:

    So Carlo, how have you voted over your voting lifetime?

    I am reminded of the saying “A Democrat is a Republican that hasn’t been mugged yet.” Looks like Carlo has been mugged.

    1. avatar samuraichatter says:

      And a Republican is a Libertarian who has not been mugged yet. Capice?

      1. avatar Stuki Moi says:

        And an anarchist, is simply a libertarian who can read….

  22. avatar JohnF says:

    I have no sympathy for this idiot.

    1. The guy lives in NJ. I can’t have any sympathy for someone who chooses to live in a state or foreign country with laws like that.

    2. According to NJ Law, any use of “theatrical firearms” for the purpose of movie making requires a permit from the NJ State Police and the New Jersey Motion Picture and Television Commission will help a producer get such a permit. The producers should have known that and the actor should have known that. Heck, I found it in a 5-seond web search.

    3. In most states, what he did would be considered brandishing or some similar charge, even though the gun was not real. According my state law, it’s illegal to “point, hold or brandish” any firearm, whether it’s loaded or not (or even real or not), in a way that would “reasonably induce fear in the mind of another of being shot or injured.” Obviously he did induce fear, because the neighbors called the cops.

    I don’t even consider this story a gun rights issue. The POTG don’t do ourselves any good by sticking for boneheads.

    1. avatar Ben says:

      Gun owners online turn on each other like starving dogs in these threads all the time. Its disgusting. How can you be ok with this guys life being ruined because he had some object the state disapproves of? That’s the big issue in my opinion. Not specifically gun laws but any law that is designed to put someone in a cage for years of their life simply because they owned, used, or ingested some object or substance the state decided was verboten. “Possession” laws are terrible and the complete opposite of freedom.

      Punish people for doing something wrong, not for having the wrong something.

      1. avatar LongPurple says:

        +1
        I resent the idea that I am at fault, and contribute to the evil, by merely being a resident (and victim) of New Jersey.

  23. avatar Chris T from KYa 1q22 says:

    I’m glad I live in Kentucky. It will take a long time to change things in NJ. Keep trying.

  24. avatar FormerWaterWalker says:

    Fook NJ. That’s worse than the dim old dude in Scotland(?) you featured last week. With a so-called homemade shotgun. I wish I had $ to send him. And NO he doesn’t “deserve” this. Neither do Cali residents or New York. Or freakin’ Illinois where I live.

    1. avatar Stuki Moi says:

      Not even the vilest of genocidal, child molesting drug dealers, could ever cause enough harm to deserve anything as wretched as a government.

  25. avatar Rob says:

    Born and raised there. Fuggedaboutit.

  26. avatar Otis says:

    Where is the mens rea? No intent, no crime…..
    Why would the cops arrest this guy when it was obvious that he was filming a movie. Are the police going to start arresting all the parents in the park where the kids are playing with toy guns.
    This is why people are leaving NJ in droves. It has become a police state and has chose not to follow the constitution.

  27. avatar Roymond says:

    In what alternate reality is the author living that he thinks we’re going to see the GOP holding the White House again any time soon? The only way it would happen is if we could get California to divide their electoral votes according to the votes actually cast.

  28. avatar Al Luck says:

    End of the day he was on the street holding what to general public looked like a firearm. Dam sure if that was me I would have made sure the producers had a permit and that local law enforcement knew what was going on. End of the day he broke the law, doesn’t say much for his producers though that he have left him to deal with it himself.

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