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three inches

Looking at ten years in prison and a $250K fine for missing three inches of steel:

James Mathew Kennedy, of the 1000 block of 27th Avenue Southwest, took the AR15-type rifle into the gun show, where he went to buy parts, officials said. They gave this account: The rifle had a barrel length about three inches shorter than is allowed without first going through a lengthy federal approval process.

22 Responses to “three inches”

  1. anon Says:

    When dealing with guns, the citizen acts at his peril.

    It isn’t ‘right’, but it is correct (for now).

  2. Stan Says:

    “He faces a charge of possession of short barrel assault rifle.”

    They couldn’t resist the urge to throw in the words assault rifle could they?

  3. one-eyed Jack Says:

    “Short barrel assault rifle” would make it a machine gun, which it probably isn’t. The penalties for violating any NFA regs are pretty steep. My guess is that the guy was just ignorant of the laws. The outcome will depend on how hard they want to work him over. Jack.

  4. Mikee Says:

    I think the outcome might also depend on how the gun came into his possession. He could have made it up from individually-legal parts himself, ignorant of the law, or he could have gotten it from an unscrupulous FFL or private individual who sold it to him ready-made.

    The latter case might be of more interest to the ATF than the former, although with an opportunity to slam-dunk a conviction with a harsh sentence against a person who won’t have their drug-dealing underlings kill your family in revenge, why not?

  5. Ian Argent Says:

    Wonder if it’s time to go after that provision of NFA’34 in the light that Heller shines on Miller. Esp given that the M4 does manifestly have a military use…

  6. EMP Says:

    So now they’re locking people up for not compensating for the size of their penises enough.

  7. Chas Says:

    He just needs to put a longer brake on it. Shouldn’t be any problem for him, right? I mean, those friendly, helpful ATF agents, always eager to help citizens comply with the law, will merely advise him of his minor oversight, so that he can rectify it, right? As an article in the LA Times two weeks ago put it, “only the lunatic fringe . . . believes the ATF to be a Gestapo-like arm of a repressive government”. So he’s got nothing to worry about, right? The LA Times doesn’t lie, do they? They aren’t pissing in our faces and telling us it’s raining, are they?

  8. B Woodman Says:

    That was my thought as I read this: How did he end up with a 3″-too-short barrel?
    From parts as-is?
    Bought as-is?
    Modified himself?

    Obviously ignorant of the law for SBRs, otherwise he wouldn’t have carried it openly into a very public gun show.

    Please keep us notified as you happen to find out more.

  9. elmo_iscariot Says:

    Must be going around. It was three inches that got Roman Polanski locked up, too.

  10. Dave R. Says:

    10 years and $250k for unintentionally violating a malum prohibitum law. A useful reminder of the reality of “enforcing existing gun laws.”

  11. Dave R. Says:

    By the way, thanks for that funny post, elmo_iscariot. Everyone loves a good laugh at the expense of 13 year olds who’ve been drugged and forcibly raped and sodomized.

  12. Chas Says:

    Markie Marxist sez: “Ha! Ha! He made the mistake of not being one of our Marxist/warrior/hero/government agents. They can have any barrel length they want. It’s a privilege we Marxists bestow on our de facto Marxists to make them feel special. You wouldn’t want our public officials thinking they weren’t any better than private citizens, would you?”

  13. Lyle Says:

    Chas and Dave R. nailed it.
    Tell me we don’t have any political prisoners in the U.S.
    Tell me that by calling for enforcement of existing gun laws you don’t mind this sort of prosecution at all, and you want more of it.

  14. Diomed Says:

    If this is his first run-in with Da Feds, he should get probation if I’m remembering the sentencing guidelines correctly.

    Of course, he’ll be a convicted felon then, with all that entails, which of course is the real goal here.

  15. Sebastian Says:

    This is really a case where the US Attorney should exercise some discretion. Take the short upper from him, tell him what the law is, and send him on his way. If it wasn’t engaged in other crimes, and doesn’t have a criminal record, there’s no public service that’s going to be served by locking him up.

  16. Paul Says:

    3 inches. That means it had a barrel lenght of 13 inches, right? Now that’s a mighty short AR. I’d notice that kind of difference. Was it a CAR without the flash hider/muzzle break?

    Well, while I don’t like the laws on barrel lenght, it’s still the law and it’s an easy one to figure out with a tape measure.

    Hope they just have him fix the rifle to comply.

  17. Tom Says:

    What a crock!

    Get a good “gun lawyer” and go after the bogus law. If you can have an AR pistol with that barrel, then how is it any more dangerous?

  18. Mike Says:

    Who are you mad at? The law? The politician that wrote the law? Or the voter that elected for the politician?

  19. Jim W Says:

    What made this weapon illegal was not the shortness of the barrel, it was the fact that it had a shoulder stock.

    The same logic that makes it illegal for DC to ban possession of handguns should make it illegal for the federal government to ban (or regulate and tax to the point of a de facto ban) possession of handguns with shoulder stocks.

  20. Jim W Says:

    Basically the short barreled weapon laws and the AOW law were passed to ban weapons which gun owners could substitute for handguns (which the original draft of the NFA also banned through oppressive taxation). The same logic that makes a handgun ban unconstitutional should also make the ban on handgun analogue bans illegal too. Rifles are in common use. Concealable weapons are in common use. Making it a felony to combine the two can’t even have a rational basis let alone pass the sort of scrutiny due to a fundamental right.

  21. elmo_iscariot Says:

    Actually, Dave, it was a joke at the expense of a scumbag who’s evaded justice for thirty years and somehow–instead of just being tried, convicted, and quietly put down–has the support of our overpayed entertainer class.

  22. Clint Says:

    First, Where to you get a 13″ AR bbl? Or is this a case of a 14.5″ bbl but someone “forgot” to measure the chamber to make it look “really” bad? Is there 1.5″ of comp sticking out the front?

    The devil is in the details and the old media, deliberately, keeps things vague. One story reported how an old man “pulled a gun from his waistband” to prevent being assaulted. A follow up story mentioned that he had a snub-nose wheel gun in a pocket holster. Of course, this is after people where judging him based on his “gangsta” carry method. Sheesh…