Are Democrats Serious About Prosecuting Gun Crimes?

democrats gun crime violence enforce

AP Photo/Gerald Herbert

We all know the Democrats want to impose more gun control upon law-abiding Americans. They no longer hide that fact at all. But not everyone knows the same Democrat party seems less inclined to imprison criminals for illegally possessing guns. And when bad people with guns commit violent crimes and don’t go to jail, they tend to re-offend, over and over again, victimizing still more innocents.

Rafael A. Mangual at City Journal asks a very pointed question. Are Democrats Serious About Gun Crime?

Last month, at John Jay College in New York City, Governor Andrew Cuomo announced the state’s new “red flag” gun law, which will make it easier for officials to confiscate guns from people deemed an “extreme risk” to themselves or others. Joining Cuomo was House Speaker Nancy Pelosi, who described the law as imperative to “the survival of our children.” Cuomo said that when it comes to gun violence, “something has to be done because we are literally losing human life.” Cuomo and Pelosi invoked mass shootings to explain why the red-flag law is necessary.

Otherwise law-abiding folks who might pose an “extreme risk” aren’t the ones committing the vast majority of crimes and killing people in this country. But we already knew that.

But mass shootings on the order of Sandy Hook and Parkland, while horrible, are not typical of most of America’s gun violence. More often, shootings are committed by individuals already legally prohibited from carrying the firearms they used. Most U.S. shootings resemble what New Yorkers saw in the Bronx last month. On February 22—three days before Cuomo signed the red-flag bill— Edgar Garcia, a 16-year-old gang member, according to the NYPD, opened fire on a crowded street in broad daylight, nearly hitting a little girl. The shooting was caught on video, leading to Garcia’s prompt arrest. A few days later, Garcia posted $10,000 bail; he’s back on the street.

In Florida, back when the Sunshine State had the 10-20-Life sentencing enhancement, Garcia would have had 20 years of hard time added to his sentence. And without probation, parole or early release.

By Florida Dept. of Corrections Public Domain, Link

Florida’s gun sentencing enhancement law drove that state’s firearm violent crime rate to its lowest level in history.

And in Florida, people like Garcia, without self-control or inclination to follow the law, spend their time in prison where they can’t hurt law-abiding people  just trying to raise their families and live their lives in peace.

Mangual continues:

Garcia’s case might get transferred to family court, where any sentence is likely to be much less severe, thanks to New York’s Raise the Age law, which Cuomo signed in 2017. Not long after Raise the Age went into effect, 17-year-old Frank Valencia was, per the New York Post, given probation and youthful-offender status in a case “involving his possession of a semi-automatic handgun, 300 rounds of ammunition plus a machete and a set of brass knuckles.” A week after his release, Valencia shot a female police officer in the face, at point-blank range.

Sounds a lot like the case in Chicago this past weekend. A police officer took a gunshot wound (allegedly) from Emily Petronella, 19. The Second City Cop blog reported that police arrested Miss Petronella on a traffic stop because she (allegedly) had a loaded shotgun in her car on February 22nd. But Cook County prosecutors declined to file charges on the felony arrest, so she walked.

Fast forward about two weeks when cops raided her apartment on unrelated drug charges. She fired through the door with another illegally-acquired and -possessed gun, hitting the officer in the shoulder. Cops say they found Petronella, over five kilograms of non-medical marijuana, guns, ammo and more. She’s now finally a guest of the Cook County jail.

Mangual continues:

…In each of these cases, violent criminals were set free and then went on to commit violent crimes with guns. The legality or illegality of guns was not the issue in any of these crimes, because none of the perpetrators was legally allowed to possess a firearm. The real question is why they were let loose.

In cities across the country, most serious violent crimes—especially gun crimes—are committed by repeat offenders. In Chicago, someone arrested for a homicide or shooting in 2015–2016 had, on average, “nearly 12 prior arrests, with almost 45 percent [of those offenders] having had more than 10 prior arrests,” according to the University of Chicago Crime Lab. In Baltimore, “85 percent of the 118 murder suspects identified by police [in 2017] had prior criminal records,” according to the Baltimore Sun. The Sun also found that “the average homicide suspect . . . had 9 previous arrests on his record” and that “nearly 36 percent were on parole or probation.” A Bureau of Justice Statistics report on violent felons convicted in America’s 75 largest counties between 1990 and 2002 found that “Seventy percent of violent felons had a prior arrest record, and 57 percent had at least one prior arrest for a felony.”

Despite these numbers, liberals and progressives continue to call for more leniency for criminals, which would erode the benefits—above all, incapacitation—that current incarceration practices provide. After every mass shooting, Democratic politicians demonize conservatives for their opposition to gun-control measures. But the Left’s staunch opposition to incapacitating violent and repeat offenders casts doubt on how serious these gun-control advocates are about stopping gun violence.

If countinued, this kind of leniency for criminals will result in crime rates similar to those in the 1970s, back when liberals and progressives last fully implemented soft-on-crime policies.

Folks, it’s just like the sheriff in Kentucky told his constituents:  Buy yourself a gun, a dog that barks and bites and lock your doors. Because increasingly, thanks to more lenient criminal justice policies, bad guys who should live in prison are roaming our streets.

comments

  1. avatar Sian says:

    They’re pretty serious about it when it’s crimes of procedure and things like driving through the wrong state with hollow-point bullets.

    But if an actual career banger breaks some laws it’s not a priority.

    1. avatar BR says:

      Why would it be? The laws that actually are for citizen safety, like locking up a home invader, don’t actually impact the politicians/vote beyond being something they can say to get a vote, while prosecuting the minor gun laws are important because it directly impacts government control over law abiding citizens/subjects.

  2. avatar Mikey Ravioli says:

    This is an excellent article showing how the gun grabbers have an agenda and are using semantics to advance it. If they were really serious about preventing gun crime laws like Florida’s would definitely do that. But then too many future Democratic voters would end up behind bars. They would be drastically reducing their own base.

    I have said it for the longest time. We know who the violent people are. We know who the crazy people are. When the violent and the crazy do something violent and crazy the gun grabbers clutch their pearls and immediately talk about passing new laws that only affect those non violent and sane enough to respect the laws.

  3. avatar Maxpowers says:

    Don’t you know it’s offensive to hold criminals responsible for their actions.

    You must be some kinda racist, sexist, bigot and a fascist.

  4. avatar Omer says:

    In other news, water is wet.

  5. avatar Green Mtn. Boy says:

    The Commiecrat party wanting to punish criminals,be serious.

  6. avatar Jeff the Griz says:

    Can’t lock up too many of the constituents.

    Why keep gun crime down when you can have a few animals keep up the violence so it’s easier to convince the sheep disarming the populace is a necessity?

  7. avatar Rick the Bear says:

    No. Next question.

  8. avatar Moltar says:

    Nope. They just wanna run to the crook with an astronomical number at first and then plea bargain it down for confessions to other crimes and maybe some intel on a few bigger fish before letting them off with community service or probation. Next question please Mr. Boch.

  9. avatar Shire-man says:

    They’re cowards. They’ll happily use full force to kick in some 80 year old grandpas door and cause death by heart attack but they routinely release, apologize to and even ignore the career violent criminal.

  10. avatar Dog of War says:

    Only when it’s useful for them. See the case of former California state senator Leland Yee, who got all of 5 years for trafficking actual assault rifles and rocket launchers for the Japanese Mafia to fund his reelection campaign.

    1. avatar Mark N. says:

      Chinese mafia. The deal was to move automatic weapons owned by Indonesian Islamic rebels to be sold in Europe or the Middle East to generate cash for the Indonesian rebels. The guns were to be transshipped through a NJ harbor.

  11. avatar Jason says:

    “over five kilograms of non-medical marijuana”

    So is this non-medical stuff like a different shade of green or do you have to have magical powers to identify it? Is it more druggy-er, or does it have a front pistol grip on it or a bayonet lug? Does it have a pipe-izine that can get 30 people high per second?

    1. avatar Moltar says:

      The medical stuff wears a white lab coat and uses really big words nobody can say and gets very offended when you ask it how to spell the words it just spat out.

  12. avatar James J. White says:

    If democrats were serious about the proliferation of illegal weapons somebody would have gone to jail after the seriously bungled “operation fast/furious”. After a border patrol officer was murdered with one of the illegal weapons shipped to Mexico you could have made a case that Obama or his A.G. or at least half a dozen ATF officials were guilty of accessory to manslaughter. Nobody was even fired much less indicted for Op-F/F so it ain’t about guns, it’s about politics.

    1. avatar Southern Cross says:

      Some people did go to jail. The dealers the BATF instructed to allow the suspicious transactions to proceed. This is how F-Troop cover their tracks. The dealers were dammed if they did and dammed if they didn’t.

      1. avatar Phil Wilson says:

        Well, screw ’em. Regardless of F/F, those dealers were helping to arm smelly peasants who might lack proper respect for their rulers.

  13. avatar DrDKW says:

    Soon as owning guns is illegal for all, then they’l get serious!

  14. avatar Jay in Florida says:

    Dimowits dont care about this country one wit. All they do care about is getting elected and having the power to control the masses.

    1. avatar Phil Wilson says:

      Yes. Though I’m afraid that description also applies to far too many Republican Congress critters.

  15. avatar Illinois_Minion says:

    That picture is just WRONG. W. R. O. N. G. !!!
    Nancy looks ready to suck the money from his wallet via his face. Where’s the eye bleach?

  16. avatar uncommon_sense says:

    There is an exceedingly simple explanation for this:

    Progressives do not care about society’s well-being. Rather, Progressives want power and influence. When Progressives release violent criminals to the streets, those criminals increase violent crime which is guaranteed to lead to the people demanding more government to “fix” the problem. That, of course, increases Progressive power and influence.

    When Progressives incarcerate Conservatives, there are fewer Conservatives to bring the truth to light and vote against Progressive candidates. That action increases Progressive power and influence.

    Is it clear now?

    1. avatar Oldsarge says:

      You are so right! Its not about guns, but control

  17. avatar bryan1980 says:

    Of course not! How can your constituents vote if they’re locked-up? Although, they’re probably already working on a solution for that, as well.

  18. avatar ColoradoKid says:

    It’s all part of the plan! It’s much easier to confiscate guns from law-abiding citizens than from criminals, and they use criminal stats to enact the laws that make it happen. If they put every gun-toting criminal behind bars there would eventually be less gun crime, hence no reason to go after OUR guns. It’s becoming more obvious that they let the criminals walk on purpose to support their ultimate confiscation agenda. They couldn’t care less about protecting the citizens, it’s more important to control them, by any means possible!

  19. avatar Seanzo says:

    Could it be that they don’t want armed taxpayers?

  20. avatar Bob Jones says:

    The democrats will never prosecute their constituent base beyond a few token arrests. The violent offenders living in the hoods will be boot camped into mass militias for the subjugation of the middle class when the time comes. Look at the post WW1 history of Russia or the recent history of Venezuela.

    The real fools are those highly educated middle class suburbanites who have taken to voting democrat recently……they will be giving up their fat IRAs and 401Ks to bail out the looming defaults by big blue cities across the country.

    1. avatar strych9 says:

      If the money was really going to bail out cities and states that are underwater that might, arguably, be a legit reason to tax those people.

      However, if history serves, nearly none of that money would be used for such a valid purpose. It will instead fund yet more boondoggles like “free childcare” and the NGD.

  21. avatar strych9 says:

    This article would seem to be premised on the notion that Democrats have some intention of applying the law evenly. They don’t. There are numerous reasons why they don’t but ultimately what matters is that selective enforcement serves a political goal.

    Really, the issue is laws or lack of laws. It’s that the people pushing for those laws are deceitful.

  22. avatar Andrew Lias says:

    No. You’re in IL you know how they’re simultaneously making criminals not criminals right now while trying to suppress the rights of people to defend themselves. The results are likely predictable too.

  23. avatar MarkPA says:

    Not mentioned above is the phenomena of concurrent sentences.

    Suppose the penalty for robbery is 4 years and the penalty for illegal gun possession is 3 years. If you are caught robbing with a gun you get 4 and 3 to be served concurrently; i.e., NOT consecutively. The gun crime is “free”.

    If the figures were reversed, 3 for the robbery and 4 for the gun, then you would serve only one more year for the gun. If prosecuted by the state you will be eligible for good time; so, you might get out in 2 years rather than a year-and-a-half. While not free, the gun crime is cheap.

    The prosecutor is likely to drop the gun charge in order to quickly negotiate the robbery charge. In such a case, the gun charge is perfectly free. But, it’s only available to a criminal committing another crime.

    If you are, for example, Shaneen Alan, your only crimes are failing to signal a lane change and gun possession in NJ. She wasn’t allowed to plead away the gun charge and pay the fine for the no-signal-on-lane-change.

    Fundamentally, the prisons are filled. The criminal justice system is compelled to ration cell-days to whichever classes of criminal that they prefer to crack-down on. So long as there is no empty cell in the state/federal system somebody gets to walk.

    So long as the waiting line for available cell space is wound several times around the block where the court house is located, a large percentage of those arrested get to walk. There is NO OTHER solution.

    As voting taxpayers, we refuse to demand that our legislators raise our taxes and build more prisons. We shouldn’t be surprised that so many criminals are enjoying their liberty.

    Inner-city neighborhoods suffer more than other areas. Until we persuade these voters that they need to arm-up in self-defense we will continue to have the situation we are in. Liberty for violent criminals; felony convictions for peaceable gun owners who don’t comply with increasingly onerous gun-control laws.

    1. avatar Carl Wyant says:

      AND if “the system” were not sending a disproportionate number of minor (marijuana) related “drug offenders” to the hoosegow, we would have more room for the actual violent offenders….

      Just saying….

  24. avatar Dennis Sumner says:

    The only gun crimes they care about is when some poor bastard buys a gun from his cousin. Gang bangers and illegals, not so much!

  25. avatar Mr Bubba says:

    No, they are not serious. Most criminals are demonstrably democrat constituents.

  26. avatar Leighton Cavendish says:

    they are fine if it is an old, white man…but when it affects young men of color then the laws are racist and biased and must be abolished…just sayin’…

  27. avatar David Bradford says:

    Michigan has the crazy “1 with gun gets you 2” law. If you a charged with a felony (regardless if you are found guilty or not) you “can”(if they so choose) be charged with felony gun possession(mandatory 2 year minimum prison sentence if convicted) if you have (or access to) a firearm (even if legally owned) when the alleged other felony was committed.
    So something like this could (and does) happen. You have your sister over for lunch and she brings her boyfriend with her. He gets out of hand and smacks her so you call the cops. They show up and he hides his cocaine under your couch. The cops notice it and charge you with the drugs. You go to court and prove that they were not yours. Because the DA found out that you had a legally owned pistol locked in a safe at the time, he charges you with Felony gun and you are sent to prison for the minimum 2 years because your sister is a bad judge of character and nothing else. Or they can just choose to not charge you on a whim. So it is a mandatory sentence, not a mandatory charge. Want to be lenient with criminals, just don’t bring charges. Want to screw with the CPL holder, prosecute him even knowing full well he is innocent.

    1. avatar Dennis Sumner says:

      Almost like they planned it!

  28. avatar Made in America says:

    JB says;
    “But not everyone knows the same Democrat party seems less inclined to imprison criminals for illegally possessing guns. And when bad people with guns commit violent crimes and don’t go to jail, they tend to re-offend, over and over again, victimizing still more innocents”

    You are using the same pronouns as the “Dumpster”. “Everybody or Somebody knows”, “Everyone or Someone knows”. That really narrows things down when you say that.
    Maybe if the more “victims” would stand up and speak out, our PD’s could take more action. This not only applies to Democrats, it also applies to the “Holier than thou” Republicans.

    The Republicans constantly blame The Democratic Party with statements like these when the system fails. Remember, the System is also made up of Republicans. Why is it that we don’t hear much from the Republican inadequacies from Republican Party when they occur? Take a look at the Washington Trump crew. Republicans can only say “Oh, quit pick’n on the poor guy, he’s our President. (?(?) Is he really? Yeah, right!!!!! Wake up!!!

    1. avatar Dennis Sumner says:

      Yeah, you’re right about just one thing. We do indeed have some Republicans and on at least one occasion, the president working against the interests of law abiding gun owners. That being said, let’s call it what it is, a bipartisan assault on the second ammendment. Wonder how intense the uproar would be if the same people decided the first or the fourth ammendment weren’t really needed.

  29. avatar Mark_PAV says:

    “….Are Democrats Serious About Prosecuting Gun Crimes?…”

    No.

  30. avatar Joey Floyd says:

    They are lovers of themselves

  31. avatar possum says:

    Democrats/ Republican . . A nest of Cottonmouths and Rattlesnakes, to keep from getting bit you’ve got to get rid of both kinds. Repub/Dem good cop bad cop both working for the same thing.

  32. avatar Alan says:

    The Gun Control Idiocy that NYC, where I grew up and lived for a number of years, inflicts on the law abiding individual is the reason I departed that vale of tears back in the fall of 1967. For the law abiding, it’s been down hill since then, though the down hill trip started long before that. The hill has just gotten steeper.

  33. Really? Under the mindset of current Authoritarian Politicians and Their STASI Enforcement agents…There is NO differentiation of “who is a criminal and who IS NOT…” Because under Liberal DemoCommie or Globalist GOP RINO occupied territories within the USA…A US Citizen/Resident of those states,( areas with U.S. Constitutional/Bill of Rights Infringements. Rights Denied), are supposed to comply with ANYTHING put on the population…Futhermore, to these Politcians and their co-conspirators, “every law abiding U.S. citizen has the potential to become a criminal” Hence the imposition to infringe upon ALL citizens from exercising THEIR constitutional rights…Which leads to futher infringements against OUR constitutional rights by attack the US citizens rights to “due process” under the 4th, 5th, 6th, 7th, 8th, 9th, 14th, etc….” What NEEDS to happen is a universal need to differentiate between a hardcore Criminal are you a citizen exercising your lawful constitutional rights, and those who are enforcing the “LAW”. Also, in addition to our Constitution. A Law making in a “Captial Crime” to infringe upon any US citizen exercising their lawful rights, with compensatory dispensation of not less then $250,000 per incident of infringement. Not including possible additional fines, defunding, imprisonment, Etc. Of Politicians, agencies, or agents involved…

    1. avatar Aaron Walker says:

      Sure miss that edit button…Damn android speech to text! Not perfect…

  34. avatar WI Patriot says:

    Uhhh, no…They’d rather prosecute law abiding (conservative)citizens, gun owners or not…

  35. avatar Ark says:

    I think they’re quite serious…about changing the law and then prosecuting formerly law-abiding gun owners who haven’t committed violence.

    1. avatar Dennis Sumner says:

      So much easier than going after real criminals, and you get great photo ops without fear of being injured. Gotta stop it!

  36. avatar sound awake says:

    dick durbin is that really you

  37. avatar Bierce Ambrose says:

    Democrats are serious about selectiveky prosecuting gun “crimes”, and not prosecuting crimes done using guns.

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