Pittsburgh Mayor to DA Zappala: “Arrest Me” Over Proposed Gun Control Legislation

Flickr / Mark Dixon

Tensions have been high in Pittsburgh over the last few weeks. After the city’s mayor, Bill Peduto, said he wanted to pass an “assault weapons ban” and red flag law within city limits, pro-2A activists rallied in protest. After all, such gun control measures passed by the city would defy Pennsylvania’s state-wide pre-emption law. Nevertheless, gun control legislation proposed in collaboration by the mayor and seven city council members is slated for a vote in February.

The DA, Stephen Zappala, wrote a letter to warn the city council as well as the mayor that passing gun control measures would be beyond the scope of the city government’s authority. An excerpt from the letter reads:

I understand the desire of local governments to be proactive in reducing gun violence and the opportunities to cause the type of pain, suffering, and death, which recently occurred in the City of Pittsburgh. I believe however, that the legislative effort needs to come from the General Assembly of the Commonwealthof Pennsylvania and that the legislation currently before Council, if passed, will be found unconstitutional.

Corey O’Connor, the city councilman at the forefront of this gun control push, responded dismissively to Zappala’s letter, saying “We believe we’re on the right side of history. We believe we’re doing what’s right for our city but we think this is what’s right across the country, and nobody is gonna stop us from doing that.”

Yeah. So, tyrannical acts are fine, as long as you’re “on the right side of history.” Great.

Now, Mayor Peduto has responded to Zappala’s warning that the measures he’s planning to sign into law would put him and the city council in legal jeopardy. Here’s what he said:

Arrest me. You know what; I welcome him trying to put up a lawsuit that would arrest me if I sign this legislation. I would welcome that. […] Anybody who would threaten a legislature of any body, city council, state rep, Congress member that would will be arrested if you don’t vote a certain way, what country do we live in?

We live in a country with a Constitution, Mr. Peduto – a country with checks and balances intended precisely to prevent people like you from infringing on the most fundamental rights of its citizens.

For our part, if this legislation passes, we hope Mr. Zappala takes him up on the offer.


  1. avatar st381183 says:

    I hope the DA files charges and prosecutes the bunch of them. But we all know he won’t.

  2. avatar Ark says:

    Arrest and charge them all.

    1. avatar Craig in IA says:

      Maybe some of us could pick his prospective cell mate. That might change his attitude in a hurry…

      1. avatar frank speak says:

        Nah!…he’d probably enjoy it…..

  3. avatar FortWorthColtGuy says:

    Fine, arrest them.

    Sic Semper Tyrannus

    1. avatar B.D. says:

      Time to refresh the tree yet? I have thought so for years. They are getting bolder. Blood will be shed.

      1. avatar -Peter says:

        No, it won’t. Realistically, non-compliance is infinitely more likely than rebellion. We’re far too well-fed and well-distracted these days to rebel against anything.

        New laws will be passed, most gun owners will ignore them. The government will ignore the fact that the laws are being ignored, and declare victory, knowing full well that law abiding gun owners won’t advertise their non-compliance.

        In a generation or two, no one will care or remember what the 2nd Amendment even said.

  4. avatar Jonathan-Houston says:

    I would charge them with official oppression. At least, that’s the relevant law in Texas when a public official willfully abuses their power to violate someone’s civil rights. It’s usually used in police brutality cases, but it applies here, too.

  5. avatar Al Swymer says:

    “a lawsuit that would arrest me”… one is civil and one is criminal. What kind of dolt is a mayor and doesn’t even understand the law? I hope he doesn’t try to represent himself in court, lest he prove an old saw to be absolutely true.

    1. avatar Geoff "Bring the EDIT button back, will ya, TTAG?" PR says:

      “What kind of dolt is a mayor and doesn’t even understand the law?”

      ‘Politician’ is its name.

      What a shame summary execution isn’t an option for scum like that…

      1. avatar Darkman says:

        Not sure but I think it’s called voting from the roof tops. I could be wrong.

      2. avatar burley says:

        Summary execution is an option. However, once that genie is out of the bottle, it had better be applied vigorously, publicly and broadly and by everyone who loves Liberty.

    2. avatar CZJay says:

      The law is almost entirely irrelevant at this point in history. Politicians and law enforcement do what they please. Look at the state of New York and California.

      1. avatar retmsgt says:

        Don’t know about New York and California, but the good citizens of the Commonwealth of Pennsylvania can and will file Private Criminal Complaints against the Mayor and the City Council Members, charging them with Official Oppression, Violation of Section 6120 of the Uniform Firearms Act, and Conspiracy.

        I think the County District Attorney won’t have much of a choice but to take action.

        1. avatar Old Guy in Montana says:

          They will plead the “Hillary Defense”…too stupid and careless to know, understand or be held culpable under the Law (thank you disgraced FBI Director James Comey for this affirmative legal defense).

        2. avatar Maz2331 says:

          The County DA warned them that just that would happen, and he absolutely will accept and prosecute the case. Peduto can grandstand himself into a state prison if he wants. And in PA, the Governor can’t just pardon him.

        3. avatar frank speak says:

          be fun to see that….but council will probably chicken out…it’s getting risky to be allied with this guy…

  6. avatar GS650G says:

    Ok sure. Felony charge too. And there goes YOUR gun rights.

    I feel safer already.

    1. avatar Omer says:

      He doesn’t need a gun, he has 24-7 bodyguard protection paid by the same people he’s committing crimes against.

      This IS the nature of government. Power, money, contempt. It’s truly sickening. The state police SHOULD arrest him, but EVERYONE knows that won’t happen.

    2. avatar anonymoose says:

      Won’t stop him from having armed jackboot security.

  7. avatar Sledgecrowbar says:

    The reality behind this is that it falls on the DA to be tied up in litigation by the GOA etc., for months or years and will ultimately be found unconstitutional (constitution of PA). So instead of being able to do their job, the DA’s office will be stuck with this, wasting millions of both tax dollars and private donation dollars by GOA etc. Any idiot can see the inevitable process but this councilman and mayor are grandstanding for their Moms Against voters at the very real expense of themselves, and people on the other side of the argument.

    It’s a shame we don’t live in a world where these two assholes can be ultimately held accountable for wasting so much of other peoples’ money.

    1. avatar Ed Schrade says:

      Easiest way to punish this idiot and his flunkies is to file a civil rights discrimination suit in federal court, then the state cannot stall or ignore what has happened.

  8. Yeah! Why NOT! Treason it is !!!! Bwhahahaha!!!

  9. avatar Aaron Walker says:

    We need a hangman! Marxist vermin!

  10. avatar Bobski says:

    Problem is that if he is charged and goes to trial he just needs 1 in 12 to be a grabber to win, thereby enboldening him and his colleagues.

  11. avatar B.D. says:

    Try them for treason.

  12. avatar Ralph says:

    So if I knock over a major branch of the Bank of America, as long as I’m on the right side of history, that’s okay, right?

    Should politicians be the only ones who get to choose which laws they obey? I think we all should have that right.

  13. avatar Ginder12 says:

    A law firm in pa notified mayor and council almost immediately after council announced what they were going to do that there would be legal action including criminal charges if they proceeded.

  14. avatar Scott C says:

    Fulfill his wish

  15. avatar NORDNEG says:

    Dirt Bags, one & all.,

  16. avatar Gadsden says:

    Good. Send him to prison where he belongs.

  17. avatar grumpster says:

    The same exact thing was tried in Deerfield, Illinois. A circuit court judge issued a temporary restraining order on the new law so that it never took effect thanks to groups including SAF and NRA.


    1. avatar Maz2331 says:

      In PA, the stakes are higher. The pre-emption statute has teeth – it is a 5-year First Degree Misedemeanor, which counts as a major felony under Federal law. There is major jail time involved, especially when combined with a conspiracy count (equal grade) and Official Oppression (a 2-year offense).

      1. avatar frank speak says:

        considering how many politicos…including AG’s… have or are doing time in PA…why should he be any different?

    2. avatar frank speak says:

      the last time he tried something like this the police refused to enforce it…considering his efforts to alter the police dept. it might be interesting to see how it will play out this time

  18. avatar Truckman says:

    they will not get away with it

  19. avatar Mad Max says:

    If Pittsburgh actually passes this unlawful ordnance and a few gun owners are harmed by attempts at enforcement, it might be possible to file a Federal lawsuit for violating 18 USC 242.

  20. avatar D says:

    The mayor is the tyrannical politian for which the 2A was created

    1. avatar frank speak says:

      NAH!….he’s just an arrogant ass….that’s been in office too long….sooner or later these liberal types always seem to go over the edge…

  21. avatar Mad Max says:

    I guess the next 2A rally will be in Pittsburgh with many Pennsylvania legislators violating Pittsburgh’s new unlawful ordnance.

    Let’s see ’em arrest Rep. Daryl Metcalfe.

  22. avatar Tim Toroian says:

    who the hell are these SOBs in cities and states who unilaterally make up their own laws? He’s no better than the “Sanctuary” people. They all should be charged with sedition. The DA won’t arrest him, the state AG will or he’ll get recalled. I want to see one of these mayors, like the idiot in ChiTown get on T.V. and announce what they are cracking down on gangs. That’s about 90+% of the gun deaths in Chicago, that and drug fights.

    1. avatar strych9 says:

      Friday Night Drug Fights:

      [Bruce Buffer’s voice announcing:]

      The Referee has called a stop to this contest in the 9th year of the forth decade. Declaring the winner by KNOCK OUT due to the enormous monetary and social costs with absolutely no determinable benefit which has been inflicted on the opponent, to be…. DRUGS!

    2. avatar Wiregrass says:

      It will have to be a recall then. You’re not going to get any action against this proposed law from Josh Shapiro. He and Peduto see eye to eye on this and is just as treasonous.

    3. avatar frank speak says:

      democratic resurgence…and the easy wins in the mid-terms…have emboldened this bunch…

  23. avatar Minuteman says:

    Always Remember the British were coming to confiscate guns when blood was spilt. Gonna happen again.

    1. avatar LarryinTX says:

      Nah. The British wouldn’t dare.

    2. avatar frank speak says:

      they were after the powder stores (ammo)….everybody already had their own guns….

  24. avatar Adam says:

    This is all grandstanding. None of these guys will be arrested or even voted out of office for this nonsense. The only negative is that the tax payer will have to foot the bill for this lawsuit because the city council is more concerned with virtue signaling than following state laws.

  25. avatar strych9 says:

    “Oooooo… a bear trap! …Ow! My leg! My leg! It’s so unfair that I stepped in a bear trap that I knew was there! What sort of country do we live in where you can be injured by knowingly doing stupid shit!?”

    -Mayor Puto Peduto

  26. avatar Chris T in KY says:

    Will the DA prosecute a sitting mayor? Will he prosecute the entire city council? Or with the DA just “stand down”?
    We will see.

  27. avatar Chris Morton says:

    If I’m not mistaken, there are “private criminal complaints” in PA, and anyone affected could file one.

    1. avatar LarryinTX says:

      Really? OOoo. How do we get that in Texas?

  28. avatar BB Eyes says:

    The mayor has a swelled bank account after getting that $500K from heir Bloomberg and his good buddy and fellow millionaire, Soros.
    “A free people ought not only to be armed and disciplined but they should have sufficient arms and ammunition to maintain a status of independence from any who might attempt to abuse them, which would include their own government.”
    –George Washington

  29. avatar possum says:

    Tombstone, Dodge City and others infringed the right to keep and bear arms in the 1800’s all with the Mayor’s approval. They can do what they want, when they want, anytime they want, for any reason they want. The law only works against, not for, We The People

    1. avatar LarryinTX says:

      Those cities were not subject to the Constitution at the time.

  30. avatar sound awake says:

    theyre not the law and order party
    remember that about them and the people that vote for them
    we must act accordingly

    1. avatar frank speak says:

      police were told to stand aside during demonstrations that blocked major traffic arteries..the only ones prosecuted were those who tried to push their way through it

  31. avatar Bob999 says:

    Every murderous tyrant in history thought and often openly claimed they were on the right side of history brushing aside the repercussions for their actions.

  32. avatar john says:

    Supreme Court Docket 18-280

    Excerpt from: Brief amici curiae of The States of Louisiana

    “This Court in Heller said “[t]here will be time
    enough to expound upon the historical justifications for
    the exceptions we have mentioned if and when those
    exceptions come before us.” 554 U.S. at 635. Those
    exceptions have come before the Court time and again
    but the Court has remained silent. This petition
    provides an excellent vehicle for the Court to break its
    silence and ameliorate the deep division within the
    4 circuit courts on two different but related issues: The
    scope or “core” of the Second Amendment right and the
    level of scrutiny courts should apply to laws limiting
    that right.”

    Doesn’t matter what the Pittsburgh mayor wants. This passage from the friend of the court brief for the above docket lays bare what the intended goal of this case will be..and the justices accepted to hear after reading this and many other statements the reflect the same thing. These antis times are limited and the infringements on the second will soon be gasping for air.

    Good things come to those who wait and damit we’ve waited long enough to be rid of all these infringements.

  33. avatar Helms Deep says:

    Publicity Stunt , backed by Bloomberg money …… setting up for this..

    Peduto is traveling Thursday to Washington, D.C., for the United States Conference of Mayors’ annual winter meeting, where he will speak Friday about Pittsburgh’s gun bills. He said he has meetings scheduled with the mayors of Las Vegas, Orlando, Fla., and Parkland, Fla., where mass shootings have occurred.

    Firearm Owners Against Crime . org

  34. avatar Steve Masuch says:

    Federal Code
    18 U.S. Code Section 242 of Title 18 makes it a crime for a person acting under color of any law to willfully deprive a person of a right or privilege protected by the Constitution or laws of the United States.
    For the purpose of Section 242, acts under “color of law” include acts not only done by federal, state, or local officials within the their lawful authority, but also acts done beyond the bounds of that official’s lawful authority, if the acts are done while the official is purporting to or pretending to act in the performance of his/her official duties. Persons acting under color of law within the meaning of this statute include police officers, prisons guards and other law enforcement officials, as well as judges, care providers in public health facilities, and others who are acting as public officials. It is not necessary that the crime be motivated by animus toward the race, color, religion, sex, handicap, familial status or national origin of the victim.

    The offense is punishable by a range of imprisonment up to a life term, or the death penalty, depending upon the circumstances of the crime, and the resulting injury, if any.

  35. avatar Mort says:

    Mayor Peduto and his city council trolls are why you should never elect democrats! They don’t care about the rule of law, rather to promote their political agenda of eliminating your rights as noted in the Constitution!

  36. avatar Bierce Ambrose says:

    “Arrest me.”

    Well he’s a public official. We have to do what they say, so…

  37. avatar Dan says:

    Pennsylvania has preemption laws. Any city official that WILLFULLY passes a law that contradicts this preemption is thus guilty of violating state law. The DA needs to call Peduto’s bluff and arrest him, AND
    ALL THE OTHERS INVOLVED if they do indeed pass the laws they intend to enact. And if DA Zappala won’t then HE needs to be removed from office for malfeasance.

  38. avatar GunnyGene says:

    Don’t let your alligator mouth overload your hummingbird ass, Mayor.

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