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The Violence Policy Center (VPC) calls them “Concealed Carry Killers“: Americans with a legal right to carry a concealed weapon who misuse that right and, well, kill someone. Their stats on the subject are more than a bit misleading; the VPC depends on pending charges and suicides to inflate the numbers. But it’s an extremely effective (i.e. irrational) angle of attack on legal gun ownership. Which I though the gun grabbers had agreed to acknowledge as a right after the Heller and McDonald Supreme Court decisions incorporated the right to keep and bear arms (trumps local and state law). Anyway, the VPC can add yesterday’s Seattle spree killer to the list. . . .

Records released today show the man who killed five people and himself in Seattle had a concealed-carry permit and owned at least six handguns, including two .45-caliber semiautomatic pistols used in Wednesday’s bloodbath.

Six! Maybe it’s time to look at legal gun ownership from the Scottish perspective. Even though Ian L. Stawicki didn’t use all six firearms during his murderous rampage.

The Seattle Times reports that the Kittitas County Sheriff’s Office issued Stawicki a concealed-carry permit in 1996 valid through 2015. (Until now, obvs.) The paper also writes that he “appears to have legally obtained the permits, including two issued by Seattle police in 1996 and in 2005.”

According to the Seattle Post-Intelligencer, Emerald City bureaucrats missed an opportunity to disarm Mr. Stawicki. Records released by the Seattle City Attorney’s Office reveal that Stawicki, bought a .45 caliber pistol in 2008 in Bothell [WA] a month after a court dismissed a misdemeanor assault charge thusly

Police officers were called to the Magnolia home of Stawicki and his then-girlfriend to find the victim with a bloody nose and crying. She told police he struck her and destroyed several of her belongings, and that in recent months, he’d begun breaking things and flying into rages, according to the police report.

But the victim later recanted her story. “Ian Stawicki never assaulted me on Feb 27, 2008 or at any other time. He never punched me or hit me in the nose, face or any part of my body,” she wrote in the statement.

“I suffer from frequent spontaneous nose bleeds and was experiencing such a spontaneous nose bleed on Feb 27 2008,” she wrote. “The police must have thought this nose bleed was the result of an assault by Ian Stawicki. I told police that my nose bleed was spontaneous and not the result of any assault, because no assault occurred.”

Of course we all know that whether or not Mr. Stawicki had legal access to a gun he could have obtained one illegally to unleash his homicidal fury. Right?

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  1. I see this as a PC / disfunctional family issue. His dad who knew, he had firearms & serious mental health issues, did nothing .. and was “suprised” ..

    • His brother knew it too. Why didn’t they do anything about it?

      “Someone like that is so stubborn, you can’t talk to him,” he told the newspaper. “It’s no surprise to me this happened. We could see this coming. Nothing good is going to come with that much anger inside of you.”

    • +1

      I think they should charge his father and his ex-girlfriend with some crime (manslaughter?), because their inaction contributed to this shooting. Both people knew he was prone to irrational periods and that he had several firearms.

      On the other hand, I think I read that the police and/or his dad had tried to institutionalize him, but the mental hospital would not agree to “hold him”. Nevertheless, someone should have worked harder to get his guns and CCW permit taken away.

      The same thing happened (didn’t happen but should have) in the Giffords shooting. In fact, every mass shooting for the last several years was committed by someone who was mentally ill.

      Isn’t there some way we can improve the system, so it can flag and stop mentally ill killers before they cause another massacre?

      • “Isn’t there some way we can improve the system, so it can flag and stop mentally ill killers before they cause another massacre?”

        It’s a noble goal, but I just don’t see how it can work without running roughshod over the rights of innocent people.

        What kinds of mental illnesses are at issue? Psychoses only? Neuroses? Depression? What about people who seek counseling for depression following a divorce or a death in the family? How about someone with PTSD? Bear in mind that PTSD can strike following such things as auto accidents or being the victim of a crime.

        Once the illnesses are defined, how do you figure out which patients might act out with violence? Past incidents? Recurring thoughts discussed in therapy? Vivid dreams?

        You get the idea. But the most important question is, WHO gets to decide?

        Some people will just clearly present a danger to others. It’s the ones in the grey areas, which is most of them, that are likely to be mistreated in the quest to predict the future.

        • Clearly condition one of “adjudicated as a mental defective”, “a danger to himself or others”, would have applied. The issue is how do you get guys like this in front of a board or judge or whatever.

          People say “there oughta be a law”. Well, there is a law, start enforcing it and leave us sane, law-abiding folk alone.

        • Currently, yes, it’s a small group. I was referring to the question of expanding the definition so as to prevent more shootings by the mentally unstable.

          The current definition only denies legal firearms to people who have already been before a “lawfully authority” or in a “mental health institution” that has found the person to have some sort of serious mental issue. That’s exactly why the Seattle shooter could legally own guns and have a concealed weapon permit – because he hadn’t been before a “court, board, commission, or other lawful authority,” or been admitted to a mental institution.

        • Responding to the post with the url link in it:

          So the problem in this case was that the mental institution did not do their job correctly. They could have, should have done what was necessary to have this person “adjudicated” as mentally incompetent to own a firearm. The same thing should have been done to the Giffords shooter and several others. The mental institutions are ultimately responsible for these shootings.

          So how do we improve the system to force mental institutions to do their job, to protect society from people who are mentally incompetent to own a firearm? Some have said that a lot of innocent people would be affected by this. I agree that we probably need to control it to prevent disenfranchising the ones with harmless mental illnesses, but we have to do something to reduce the number of massacres-by-mad-men.

          Don’t say it can’t be done. I think it MUST be done. We have to find a way to do it effectively, while disenfranchising the minimum number of mentally-ill-but-harmless people.

        • I’m not arguing to expand the definition by any means at all, but the shooter’s brother said he knew something like this would happen, that he wasn’t surprised. Well, that sounds like someone who’s a danger to himself or others to me, how about you?

        • I’m not aware that the shooter in this case was ever in a mental institution.

          I provided the link because people seemed unclear about the law.

        • Michael says:
          “I’m not aware that the shooter in this case was ever in a mental institution.”

          That fact was mentioned in one of the other links (one of the newspaper reports, I think). Someone tried to get the shooter the mental treatment he needed, but the mental institution refused to “hold him”, they refused to keep him in the hospital under treatment. The reason why is not stated, but I think it is a (nationwide) problem of insufficient funding for our mental treatment facilities.

        • “I think it is a (nationwide) problem of insufficient funding for our mental treatment facilities.”

          It’s a huge issue.

        • Michael says:
          “I think it is a (nationwide) problem of insufficient funding for our mental treatment facilities.”
          It’s a huge issue.

          Yeah, this problem is one of the ‘unintended consequences’ of another completely unrelated government decision. Unfortunately, almost every government decision has a few unintended (and often un-foreseen) consequences. SUCKS, doesn’t it…

    • We need to get the word out there, that this is an extremely rare event. One mentally ill person out of several million law-abiding CCW holders does not indicate anything about the practice of legally carrying or the people who do it. IT IS AN ANOMALY. Statistics in every state indicate that CCW holders are far-and-away the most law-abiding citizens.

      In fact, this is a national news story, BECAUSE it is an anomaly. If it happened more frequently, the media would ignore the individual stories.

      • Quite true. Millions of concealed carriers go about their daily lives armed, prepared to defend themselves and others, and harm absolutely no one. In the rare cases when they do use their weapons the vast majority are life saving defensive uses, and the vast majority of those involve no shots fired.

        I find myself disgusted that so many people’s reaction to these events is to make it harder for people to access the tools of self defense and to make it easier for them to be prosecuted if they ever do defend themselves.

    • It sure is. Except that the rational response by thinking (aka, not people dedicated to grabbing guns) needs to be why there weren’t MORE CCW in and around that cafe in Seattle.

      You can’t stop crazy. You can’t stop violence. We don’t live in paradise yet. If no guns, that madman could have hacked people up with a large kitchen knife as well.

      The answer has to be that more sane civilized law abiding citizens need to carry concealed, get trained on how to use their weapons, and do their part in upholding society.

      Of course, I recognize that I’m preaching to the choir here, but…

  2. Sometimes people here really surprise me with who they think should and shouldn’t have a gun. Every once in awhile a bad nut like this guy will go crazy but if you make it easy to take guns away from people for being insane, they’re just going to broaden the base of insane to “People who want guns are insane.” It’s not like psychology is an exact science.

    • ScottA said: …they’re just going to broaden the base of insane to “People who want guns are insane.” It’s not like psychology is an exact science.

      I don’t think the scientific community could find a scientific way to prove that statement. Maybe a few scientists would say it, but it takes a concensus of the majority of the scientific community before any scientific theory will be accepted.

        • This news story and the way the media is reporting it, is TRYING SOMETHING LIKE THAT. He is appealing to the masses with an irrational, emotional, but very effective, scare tactic.

          In the referenced USAToday report, the conclusion the writer hopes we will take from his report is:
          “There are an awful lot of crazy CCW holders on the streets, and we need to crack down on all the CCW holders to stop the crazies from hurting us.”

      • Things can get pretty weird when we have the mix of science and government, particularly a nanny government.
        If Obamacare stands, I can see that all it would take is for an administrator to determine owning guns was part of a ‘high-risk lifestyle’ and therefore gun owners lose insurance coverage. No Act of Congress needed, no question of the 2nd Amendment. “Of course you can own a gun, but we’re sorry you and your family can’t have health insurance with the dangerous gun in the house.”
        Liberals do not fight fair.

  3. The easiest way to stop nuts with guns is to shoot them. Ergo, more sane people need to have guns. When most all sane people have guns, the crazy people will get off a lot less shots.

  4. So was this man mentally ill when his concealed permit was issued or did mental illness set in later?

    If his family knew and did nothing well that opens up all sorts of legal issues.

  5. Why is there never outrage against those who commit vehicular homicide who are legally licensed to drive? “Oh look; she had a license but drove into another car! Revoke everyone’s license and ban private vehicles!”

  6. Look at how many times this has happened. This is one of a few stories where a legally armed citizen has gone bad. Of the millions of gun owners, legal gun owners, how many have used there weapons to maliciously hurt people? Not as many as illegal gun owners. Some times people snap. I am sure when it is all said and done we will find something happend to make him go off. I am getting sick and tired of people thinking we can make a law to prevent something that happened. We did not create a law banning axes when Lizzy Borden was accused of killing family members. We don’t make laws banning cars that kill more people than anything else. We don’t give phsycological test to get a drivers license to prevent road rage. With over a million CCW holders in America none of them killed anyone today. STOP THE KNEE JERK REACTIONS. You can’t make enough laws and restrictions to save us from ourselves no matter how hard you try. Cain and Able still found a reason for murder. Our Governement is not tasked with saving us from ourselves, that our own personal responsibility. Our government is to save us from other countries and other tyrants. If you have that strong of an anti-freedom view move to Great Brittian, Australia to name a few.


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