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UPDATE - Thanks to everyone for the comments, the recs and the tips. A great suggestion made by BentLiberal in the comments:

If you'd like to donate to the surving families of the detectives who were killed,  there are 3 ways to do so:


Memorial Fund

    1. Bay Federal Credit Union is accepting donations for the families of Santa Cruz police Sgt. Loran "Butch" Baker and detective Elizabeth Butler.
    Checks should be made payable to the Santa Cruz Police Officers Association and mailed to 3333 Clares St., Capitola, CA 95010. Donations also can be made at any Bay Federal branch.

    2. In addition, the Police Officers Association and Police Department have set up a "Baker/Butler Scholarship Fund" with Wells Fargo. Anyone can go to any Wells Fargo branch anywhere in the country and make a deposit to this account number #999 245 1154.

    3. City finance chief Marcus Pimental said the city also will accept donations mailed to 809 Center St., Room 101, Santa Cruz CA 95060 to the attention of the Baker/Butler Scholarship Fund.
    'We will also take credit card donations over the phone during normal business hours (831-420-5070) with no cost to donors,' Pimental said. 'All funds received by Wells Fargo or to the City's Finance Department address will be held in a special trust to be distributed to the detectives' families.'
Remember this is about the victims, not about some pie-fight where one person's rights are more equal than others.  Some suggested in the comments that this may be the police's fault, which is entirely possible but nothing indicates that was the case.  While I understand that there are police that abuse their power, I find it odd that some would first lay the blame on the victims or the police and have no ire for the killer or the lax laws that allow someone like him to purchase guns and body armor.


Loran 'Butch' Baker with his son, Adam, when Adam joined the Santa Cruz Police as a Community Service Officer in September of 2010.  (Larissa Mueller/Sentinel)
Loran 'Butch' Baker with his son, Adam, when Adam joined the Santa Cruz Police as a Community Service Officer in September of 2010.  (Larissa Mueller/Sentinel)
I didn't see this diaried, so I am posting another senseless killing of two police officers.

From the LA Times:

Jeremy Goulet, the man suspected of killing two Santa Cruz police officers Tuesday, was wearing body armor and carrying three handguns, authorities discovered after Goulet was fatally wounded in a shootout with authorities, Santa Cruz County Sheriff Phil Wowak said.

Police suspect Goulet was carrying the guns of the two officers, Elizabeth Butler and Loran "Butch" Baker, Wowak told reporters. The officers were killed on the doorstep of Goulet's Santa Cruz home, he said.

The shootings began about 3:30 p.m. when a man, believed to be Goulet, opened fire on the two officers, who were conducting a follow-up investigation at a home, authorities said.

Two police officers doing their job and checking on a guy that appears to be a deviant end up dead, just for trying to ask him questions.

This guy clearly should not have had his hands on a firearm, but he did.  Probably an illegal gun, but don't forget that every illegal gun started it's life as a happy legal gun before and unscrupulous "private" dealer or family member "laundered" them into the illegal market.

Santa Cruz police officer Elizabeth Butler patrols along Pacific Avenue in 2005. Butler was killed Tuesday, Feb. 26, 2013, in a shooting in Santa Cruz, Calif. (Shmuel Thaler/Sentinel file)
Santa Cruz police officer Elizabeth Butler patrols along Pacific Avenue in 2005. Butler was killed Tuesday, Feb. 26, 2013, in a shooting in Santa Cruz, Calif. (Shmuel Thaler/Sentinel file)
Of course the NRA and their apologists don't want any regulations that would stop the current system that supplies the illegal gun market since that is one more way to increase demand & profits.  All of their bluster about enforcing existing laws is just BS as the "private" dealers "laundering" guns into many cities are not technically violating the law since they do not need to report the sales or do background checks.

We do not know how/where he got the gun, but the supply of guns is so ample that even in CA a guy that should not be able to get his hands on a gun does so and kills two cops.

Wowak said the officers were wearing plain clothes and were attempting to obtain information from Goulet, who had been accused in a sexual assault case.  

The officers had “no suspicion they would be in danger,” he said.

Butler was a 10-year Santa Cruz Police Department veteran, and Baker was a 28-year veteran, authorities said.

“There should be no suspicion or second-guessing on how they ended up where they were,” Wowak said. “They were just doing their job.”

This murderer was clearly not an upstanding citizen:
The Oregonian also reported that jurors convicted Goulet of carrying a gun without a concealed weapons permit.

According to the San Francisco Chronicle, jurors cleared Goulet of an attempted murder charge after determining his weapon went off accidentally during an altercation with the boyfriend of the woman in the shower.

He later served two years in prison after a dispute with his probation officer, the Chronicle reported. He agreed to prison time rather than undergoing court-ordered sex offender treatment, according to the Chronicle.

OMG! Criminals will clearly break the laws!  This guy carried concealed without a permit! If sensible firearms regulations are passed only criminals will have guns!

So the carnage continues. One American shot every five minutes (525,600 minutes divided by over 100k shooting victims every year), but don't worry as we "only" have 32k deaths or one every 16 minutes).  Yet we seem to be so numb to this senseless violence that most people aren't even aware of the magnitude of the problem.

“This is a horrific day. We lost two exceptionally fine officers,” a visibly shaken Police Chief Kevin Vogel told reporters Tuesday night. “We need to figure out a way to bring our department together and get through this.”
Amen.  Sad and a time to mourn in Santa Cruz, but is it too soon to talk about what should be done to reduce the number of people getting shot?  I don't think so.  We owe it to these two victims and to their families (why does it seem that so many forget that the families left behind are also victims?) to start the process of breaking the NRA's grip on Congress so that they pass some sensible federal firearms regulations that do not violate the Second Amendment in any way, specifically:

    1. Licensing, with the accompanying training on safety/safe storage.

    2. Registration of all firearms manufactured from now on and of any transferred/sold between private owners/dealers.

    3. Full criminal back-ground checks (not just a NICS check) on every sale/transfer (including private sales, gun shows or unlicensed dealers)

    4. For good measure, we should also limit clips/magazines from now on to somewhere between 7 and 10 rounds.

I want to make it clear that I am not advocating making firearms illegal or confiscating any of them from responsible owners.  I am advocating for sensible regulations that will allow those who choose to own firearms to be able to do so and these regulations will slowly dry up some portion of the illegal guns that the NRA keeps stocking our cities with.

I have yet to be told by anyone how any of these violate the Second Amendment, but The NRA and their apologists sure attack me and anyone that proposes regulations like these as trying to take away their constitutional right?  To them I say: what about the rights of the victims? Since when did their rights become superior to that of victims?

I must go now as it took me about an hour to put this together and 12 more people were shot in that time frame, 4 of them fatally.

Originally posted to DefendOurConstitution on Wed Feb 27, 2013 at 08:04 PM PST.

Also republished by Repeal or Amend the Second Amendment (RASA) and Shut Down the NRA.

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