Mr "ATF Special Agent and spokesman Tom Ahern" is either grinding a
large ax, or is totally incompetent with respect to popular civillian
firearms. Either way, somebody should probably drop a line to his boss
(as if that would help).
If he had any sort of experience with the AR-15 crowd, he'd know,
without a doubt, the reason the 37mm 'grenade launcher' is 37mm and not
the military standard 40mm-- the BATF allows unrestricted sale of 37mm
"flare launchers" because _explosive grenades aren't available in
] On Behalf Of Xela
Sent: Monday, August 08, 2005 7:29 AM
Subject: [guntotingliberals] News article-This stuff gives me the
Am I the only legitimate firearm owner who is freaked out by this type
of news stories?
I mean, if the guy did something wrong, punish him.
But, if he is without guilt, why drag him thru the mud like this?
So what the heck if I own a couple of AR's? What's the big deal with
4-5 handguns? "Dozens" of ammunitions? And give me a break, when did
badge collecting become a crime?
Is it a crime in your part of the country to have firearms "strewn
throughout the home"?
I repeat, just so that you don't get me wrong, if they find something
criminal on him, well too bad, he must pay. But maybe he'll just end up
paying for his stupidity perhaps. I mean, exiting your home to talk to
officers with a loaded rifle on your hands?
But enough, lest this be considered flame bait...
What is a legitimate firearm owner to do in order to avoid this
embarrassment? Ignore articles like this? Stop buying "evil" weapons?
Police Seize Weapons Stash From Wheeling Home WMAQ-TV
CHICAGO - A 43-year-old man who had a stash of weapons in his Wheeling
home was charged Tuesday with firing a rifle at police.
Gregory A. Banks, of 496 Isa Drive in Wheeling, was charged with
aggravated discharge and reckless discharge of a weapon, according to a
news release from the Village of Wheeling.
At 1:57 a.m. Tuesday, Wheeling police responded to a domestic
disturbance call to the Isa Drive address in the northwest suburb, the
When one officer exited his squad car, he saw Banks, carrying an AK-47
rifle, exit the home and go back inside, Wheeling Police Deputy Chief
John Stone said. A rifle shot was then fired, striking the ground a few
feet from the officer, according to the release.
Banks claimed that the rifle went off by accident, Stone said.
After police surrounded the home, the residents inside exited and were
taken into custody, according to the release. Everyone else aside from
Banks was released, Stone said.
Inside the home, police found more than a dozen weapons, including a
grenade launcher, assault rifles and handguns, according to Stone.
The weapons were strewn throughout the home, some in plain view, Stone
said. Police also found fireworks and fake law enforcement badges, he
In Banks' vehicle, a S.W.A.T. uniform and other weapons were found,
Stone said. Additional charges may be filed against Banks, who is not a
law enforcement officer, he said.
Banks lived at the single-family home on Isa Drive with his girlfriend,
who owned the house, according to Stone.
Stone could not immediately provide court information for Banks, and
Cook County State's Attorney's Office spokesman Tom Stanton did not have
any information on when he would appear for a bond hearing.
ATF agents were attempting to trace the weapons in a national database
to determine whether they were obtained illegally, according to ATF
Special Agent and spokesman Tom Ahern.
Banks told agents he obtained some of the weapons on the Internet, but
his account had not been confirmed as of Tuesday night, Ahern said.
In addition to the 37 mm grenade launcher, police found four assault
rifles, five semi-automatic handguns, and dozens of rounds of ammunition
in Banks' home, Ahern said.
Several hunting knifes, night-vision goggles, a gas mask, disabling
chemical spray, body armor and handcuffs also were found, he said.
All the weapons were functional, and federal investigators were
conducting ballistic tests Tuesday night to determine if they had been
fired recently, according to Ahern.
"To have that many weapons, functional high-powered weapons, in a
residential area is obviously very dangerous to say the least," Ahern
Ahern said that if Banks has felony convictions on his record or does
not have a valid firearm owner's registration card, he would face
additional federal charges.
The agents conducting the investigation were planning more interviews
with Banks and further investigation Tuesday night after investigating
the weapons, he said.
Investigators were not sure why the man possessed the weapons, Ahern
said, adding that he could not provide any background for the man.
Ahern said if ATF investigators determine that what appeared to the
police to be a grenade launcher actually is one, Banks would be in
violation of federal firearm possession laws.
A 37-mm grenade launcher was manufactured to be "used strictly for
military purposes," he said.
City News Service contributed to this story.
(c) 2005 MSNBC.com
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