OIA gun arrests rarely end with convictions, the orlandosentinel.com headline proclaims, adding Gun arrests dismissed almost every time a defendant says, ‘I forgot,’ records show. Although the story doesn’t actually come out and say “Hang ’em high!”, scribe Henry Pierson Curtis’s incredulous tone tells you that the paper’s editor is unhappy with the fact that Orlando International Airport gives forgetful gun owners a pass when the TSA’s blue-shirted goons discover a firearm in their carry-on. Actually, that’s not true. It’s neither the airport nor the unionized gropers who let our People of the Gun go. In fact it’s . . .
Orlando International has one of the nation’s toughest arrest policies when people are caught with firearms at security checkpoints.
But the scale tilts toward leniency when it comes to prosecuting those people.
Just one of the 42 cases sent to the Orange-Osceola State Attorney’s Office in 2013 ended in a conviction so far. Three cases are pending . . .
Chief Assistant State Attorney Richard I. Wallsh in Orlando said the 38 OIA gun cases completed were all reviewed by prosecutors who had to decide if there was enough evidence to take them to trial. He pointed to a copy of state law on his desk that showed “knowingly and willfully” breaking the law must be proved for conviction in most cases.
Twenty of those cases — including five of the six felony cases for unlicensed guns — were referred for pretrial diversion requiring community service and regular check-ins. Upon completion, a judge can withhold adjudication so the participant does not have a conviction.
And this is a problem because . . . ? Because guns!
A recent Sentinel review found airports across the nation had widely differing gun arrest policies and data. Some were strict and others lenient when it came to travelers showing up at checkpoints with guns.
There’s less uncertainty at some overseas airports.
“If you do not declare your weapon you are detained for 24 hours and your weapon is confiscated,” Rafi Sela, former head of security at Ben Gurion International Airport in Tel Aviv, wrote in an email to the Orlando Sentinel. “You will stand trial and your license will be revoked.
“In Israel, people usually do not forget they are carrying guns.”
And in Israel the government is busy disarming its citizens. Go figure.