New Hope Shooter Had No Business Walking the Streets

Raymond Kmetz (courtesy

Sheriff: New Hope gunman bought ammo on day of shooting, had gun illegally the headline at proclaims. Because guns. In fact, Raymond K. Kmetz [above], the 68-year-old man who shot and wounded two policemen in New Hope, Minnesota City Chambers, had a long history of mental illness. Despite focusing on the gun used in the attack – “Authorities do not know how Kmetz got the gun, which the sheriff described as a ‘pistol-grip shotgun with the serial numbers ‘obliterated'” – the paper’s coverage clearly indicates that Kmetz was a known nutcase and violent threat to pubic safety. To wit . . .

Over the past few years, Kmetz had clashed repeatedly with authorities, particularly in New Hope, often about his longtime and now former home on Nevada Avenue, according to documents and family members. He had addressed the New Hope City Council several times in recent years.

In nearby Crystal, police had filed a restraining order against him in August after Kmetz’s family warned police that he had threatened to bring a shotgun to City Hall. The order raised concerns about his increasingly volatile behavior and obsession with city officials . . .

Kmetz had undergone years of court-ordered mental health treatment and was released from the state hospital at St. Peter in 2013 after being found incompetent to stand trial, according to court documents. A week before his release, the hospital notified the Hennepin County attorney’s office that Kmetz was no longer treatable . . .

On Wednesday, Hennepin County Attorney Mike Freeman discussed his office’s long involvement with Kmetz, including threats he made to one of his prosecutors. When Freeman’s office learned that his mental illness was so profound he was no longer amenable to treatment, the decision was made to dismiss the charges.

What are the odds that the anti-gunners will use this shooting as justification for degrading and destroying Americans’ natural, civil and Constitutionally protected right to keep and bear arms? As always, what’s needed here is criminal/crazy control, not gun control. While our hearts go out to the wounded officers, the New Hope shooting should give new hope to those who wish to make that case, as we’ve just done. Again. Still.


  1. avatar LC Judas says:

    “He is so crazy that charging him with court ordered treatment isn’t enough. Let’s just call it quits.”

    Guy should have never been let out of the rubber room, sounds like.

    1. avatar doesky2 says:

      Government stupidity piled on top of Leftist demands to mainstream crazies.

      “Being on the Left means never having to say you’re sorry”…..Dennis Prager

    2. avatar Bob says:

      How long has the government been saying “We’re here to keep you safe! Our number one priority is to keep everyone safe.”

      Right, they’ve been doing such a great job at that…

    3. avatar Hannibal says:

      “A week before his release, the hospital notified the Hennepin County attorney’s office that Kmetz was no longer treatable . . .”

      Yeah… what?!?

      Sounds like no one wanted to deal with this guy so they passed him around like a hot potato until someone had to shoot him.

      1. avatar Icabod says:

        A patient referred is a case closed.
        So, just what did the touchee feelee psychs expected was going to happen. How about “OK shrinks you say he’s like a rabid dog. We’ll just put him down at your day so.”

  2. avatar george from fort worth says:

    a crazy person didn’t obey a restraining order ? criminal charges were dropped because he was an untreatable/unsalvagable crazy person ? he was released from a mental hospital because he was crazy ?

    oh well, just the price we pay for living in an enlightened society. sane people with guns, however, are completely unacceptable to an enlightened society.

    1. avatar Jeremy S says:

      Too crazy to be in a mental hospital? Better release him into the wild.

      1. avatar doesky2 says:

        The NRA-ILA should really dig into the details of this case and if it’s as blatantly indicative of a mental health system run amuck then they should make this a poster boy eaxmple on how the anti-gunners are focusing on the wrong things. Make sure they get some screen grabs from the harpies decrying the problem with gunz and then overlay the truth of the mental health system collapse.

  3. avatar Red in Texas says:

    Because GUNZ…………………

  4. avatar Scrubula says:

    Catch and release criminals/mentally unstable people single handedly cause most crime and homicides… Many of the released criminals are gang members in large cities.

    Seems like our criminal justice system needs reform before anything else to reduce violence.

    1. avatar uncommon_sense says:

      When you consider how many criminals are repeat offenders (hint: well over 90% of them), your assertion rises to an entirely new level of significance. The single most effective thing we can do to reduce violent crime is to stop letting violent criminals out of prison! (bold statement spoken to mimic Jim Carrey in the movie Liar, Liar when Jim Carrey tells a repeat offender, “Stop breaking the law @$$hole!”)

  5. avatar Mediocrates says:

    there in lays th crux of the matter. how do we keep guns out of the hands of people like this without infringing on the rights of the law abiding citizen.

    1. avatar mig says:

      I would say you do that the same way that we keep nuclear weapons out of the hands of crazy people like kim jong un, wait how about Sayyed Ali Khamenei, er, well…

      Oh yeah, we arm ourselves in an effort to protect ourselves and those that we care about.

      There is always some clown that is willing to provide weapons of some sort to those that are less than balanced, either for profit or some other selfish reason, without any concern for the welfare of others. So, we all have to do what we can to protect ourselves and not depend on others to do that for us.

    2. avatar twency says:

      How do we keep them from cars?
      How do we keep them from boats?
      How do we keep them from boxcutters?
      How do we keep them from crossbows?
      How do we keep them from steak knives?
      How do we keep them from baseball bats?
      How do we keep them from bowling trophies?
      How do we keep them from gasoline and road flares?

      The world is filled with dangerous objects that can be used to harm others. If an adult is too dangerous to be trusted in public with guns he’s too dangerous to be trusted in public without supervision period.

      1. avatar george from fort worth says:

        uuhhh, uuummmm, like, uuuhhhh keep them locked up?

        1. avatar Clark45 says:

          George, George, George. Didn’t you read the article? He is too crazy to be kept in an institution. Why, locking him up when he is untreatable would just be inhumane! (/end sarc)

          Seriously, it seems like such an obvious answer, just like to us it seems obvious that we should prosecute criminals using the laws we have now rather than enact more laws. New laws which the criminals would ignore just like they ignore the existing ones, and which would often hobble law abiding citizens.

          I’m with you – this dude should have stayed in some kind of institution, imho, but what do we know? We’re a bunch of gun nuts…

        2. avatar Roymond says:

          Doesn’t the government own some fairly pleasant tropical islands? The ocean itself would keep people there.

        3. avatar Grindstone says:

          Good thing that will never be abused…

    3. avatar Roymond says:

      How many law-abiding citizens get years of court-ordered treatment, have made threats to bring a weapon to a city council meeting, and been released from a mental hospital as untreatable?

      All we have to do to prevent this sort of thing is provide actual housing for the severely mental ill — which several places have discovered is cheaper than leaving them loose so the police have to deal with them over and over and over.
      Take ten percent of the BATFE’s budget away, and it would be plenty to deal with this sort of thing.

    4. avatar Marcus (Aurelius) Payne says:

      We accept that no one has any authority to regulate who owns firearms, arm ourselves and on the off chance we ever encounter someone dangerously crazy, we shoot first if needed.

  6. avatar Sixpack70 says:

    No way, government agencies failing? Say it ain’t so!

  7. avatar Noishkel says:

    Not too dissimilar to what happened in Aurora CO. A know violent person that’s under treatment that nobody in power bothered to do anything about. Yet the antis are always glad to use incidents like this to justify their agenda.

    1. avatar LongPurple says:

      It’s a constantly repeating situation. Known mentally unbalanced and violent people are left unaided after repeated incidents that should have gotten them out of civil society, for society’s protection from them, and into an asylum, where they can be helped.
      Instead, the solution offered is to put more restrictions on the liberty of all of society, in an attempt to e.g. “keep guns out the hands of the insane”. So rather than segregate the problematic members of our society, we are seeing all of society slowly being geared to the level of control and regulation of its citizens as if all of civil society was one vast asylum for the criminally insane.

  8. avatar somedude says:

    That guy’s eyes are so close together, he’s almost a cyclops. Wonder if he even has depth perception.

    1. avatar Hannibal says:

      Maybe that’s why he lost the gunfight…

  9. avatar j says:

    Looks like the offspring of a sibling marriage……….that face is a few sizes too small for his head…

  10. avatar Jonathan - Houston says:

    Shouldn’t have been walking the streets, eh? I agree. Once again……we see a batcrap crazy man go on his little shooting spree, only to learn later that he had a long, well documented, and abundantly clear record of instability and threatening behavior, which was ignored. Now you say he shouldn’t have been walking the streets? Well.

    Any time someone suggests rounding the crazies up and locking them down, here comes TTAG in high dudgeon, screaming about 2A rights. Yes, I know the antis want to pervert the judicial system into a confederacy of gungrabber doctors and compliant judges. Still, that’s the legal system we have and we must counter their devious methods there, too, as elsewhere, and not just abandon it to their purposes.

    If we don’t take out the crazies with the legal tools we have, then the antis will exploit the crazies to acquire the legal tools they need to take out our 2A rights.

  11. avatar mark_anthony_78 says:

    Isn’t it illegal to deface firearm serial numbers? I know there are many state laws… not sure if it’s a federal thing too.

    If so, we need to close the “serial number defacement loophole” and make it extra super duper illegal to deface serial numbers. That will solve the problem.

    1. avatar Russ Bixby says:

      Ban abrasives. And machine tools. And hard rocks…

  12. avatar Russ Bixby says:

    Yeah, the coverage is bad; because newspapers.

    OR: Maybe they’re simply acknowledging that in general laws don’t keep guns out of unlawful hands, which they don’t.

    Instead of presuming the Paper and Sheriff to be E-vil, how about reading it as written.

    They merely reported facts; why draw inferences of hostile intent?

  13. avatar Chip Bennett says:

    But I thought background checks stopped people like this guy from getting guns?

    This is a perfect example of the failure of gun control, and the need for violent psychopath control.

  14. avatar neiowa says:

    A generation ago this guy would have been institutionalized. Today all these “institution” sit empty. WHY? Because the flipping ACLU and assorted libtards closed them down. Now we hamd crazy people some happy pills with instructions to eat them on a defined schedule (keep in mind that these folks are nuts) and throw these nuts back on the street. And perhaps have a blackrobed sage issue a piece of paper/restraining order to prevent bad outcomes. What could go wrong.

    Could today’s gov’t be trusted to properly institutionalize crazy people (after timely due process)? Doubtful. Suspend the 2nd? NO

    So we accept risk?

    1. avatar Red in Texas says:

      “And perhaps have a blackrobed sage issue a piece of paper/restraining order to prevent bad outcomes.”

      Printed on SAPI plates?

    2. avatar doesky2 says:

      I’m in 100% agreement that it was a Leftist push to empty the psych wards but we have to be honest and acknowledge that the Repubs went along with it to cut costs (although I doubt any money was really saved it probably just got pushed to other government projects).

    3. avatar uncommon_sense says:

      “A generation ago this guy would have been institutionalized. Today all these ‘institution’ sit empty.”

      I disagree. The “institutions” are quite full … we call them prisons.

      The key differences today:
      (1) the criminal justice system often fails to “commit” people on the streets.
      (2) the prison industrial complex makes no effort whatsoever to treat their “patients”.
      (3) the criminal justice system keeps turning the “patients” loose after a few years.

  15. avatar Gman says:

    Not all problems have a solution. But try telling that to a politician. The “we must do better” or “if we can save just one” mentality is absurd. Every single alarm bell went off for this guy and look what still happened. Very similar to the San Jose shooter. A free society comes with consequences. And, no matter how hard we try to stop it, sometimes poop just happens.
    So, Shannon Watts IS right; Because America. Not, as she reckons, because we have guns. But because we have FREEDOM.

    1. avatar Jake Tallman says:

      Couldn’t have said it better myself. You’re absolutely right.

  16. avatar Ralph says:

    The “payoff” is buried in the last paragraph:

    City Council Member John Elder is another security safeguard. Elder, a former police officer and spokesman for the Minneapolis Police Department, carries a handgun. As shots were heard Monday, Elder drew his firearm and aimed it toward the door but did not fire.

    Councilman Elder, who was armed, protected the unarmed council members, who were busy cowering in fear.

  17. avatar uncommon_sense says:

    Obviously, gun grabbers will seize upon and exploit Mr. Kmetz’s criminal activities.

    To ask Mr. Baum’s question, what were our failings of moral leadership that enabled Mr. Kmetz’s rampage?

    My answer: too few people were armed and ready to stop Mr. Kmetz at the onset of his attack.

  18. avatar TT says:

    This reminds me of the old Saturday Night Live Who Shot Buckwheat skit: “Do you believe John David Stutts shot Buckwheat? Oh yes, that’s all he ever talked about.”

  19. avatar Ern says:

    We are always going to have people that do not fit into the fat part of the Bell Curve. Some of the people are capable of committing violent crimes whether guns are available or not. Concentrating on the objects they use violently misses the point. You can not recognize or monitor all the people that need help, just do the best you can to contain the situation.
    Violating the my Constitutional rights to restrict and contain what a few people will do just does not make sense. More people die every year because negligent or reckless drivers kill more people on the highways of this country. We accept the fact that we can’t do away with cars, just apply the law when the worse happens.

  20. avatar Kap says:

    Bloomberg’s main squeeze is just salivating with this information, better than Pavlov’s Dogs! After winning Mass Confusion in Washington State, We Need more Laws so we can get more people Killed! you ever notice how the Super Rich don’t want us Peons too have any rights! Actually the More Laws make us Safer People, should Look in their own bailiwick and root out the Mental defectives, oops they wouldn’t have much left
    Molon Labe

  21. avatar Hal Jalykakik says:

    Of course, you ARE AWARE that Ray Kmetz had the gun purchased for him by a “straw purchaser”– that is, somebody who can legally purchase a gun and does so for someone who is forbidden by law from purchasing a gun?

    Yes, it’s a “crazy problem”– but it’s also a “somebody-buying-a-gun-for-a-crazy-guy-who-should-not-be-owning-a-gun” problem too.

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