He was too embarrassed to call the police himself and asked his assistant to make the call instead. Dave Evans, a staffer for Missouri House Speaker Tim Jones, R-110, left his loaded gun behind in a Capitol bathroom while he was taking a dump.
Tom Smith, Speaker Jones’ chief of staff, says Mr. Evans will have to take a gun-safety course, even though he already was legally carrying a concealed weapon.Everyone in Jefferson City, Missouri can thank that staffer for using common sense and doing more than the minimum required by Missouri law. It is shocking that Missouri
does not require gun owners to report lost or stolen guns to the police. Even more shocking is the fact that, as of 2010, only seven states have passed laws requiring lost or stolen guns to be reported to the police, (MI, OH, NJ, NY, CT, RI, MA).
When Hillsborough County, Florida, Deputy Luke Hussey did the same thing at a movie theater three months ago, he was demoted and suspended by his boss, Sheriff David Gee.
The 13-year veteran of the Hillsborough County Sheriff's Office was off-duty and celebrating Father's Day on June 16 when he left the loaded 9mm Glock pistol with a 10-round magazine filled with bullets on the toilet dispenser in a Tampa theater bathroomTwo guns left in a public bathroom. One carrier, a sworn sheriff's deputy, has to take a bite or two of a huge shit sandwich. The other, whose job does not require him to carry, a man working in a building with ample professional armed security already, has to take gun-safety classes. Two very different punishments for the same offense.
And if you think sloppy civilian gun owners get off easy compared to sloppy cops, you should consider what happens to soldiers who lose their guns.
Join me below the fold.
That same day, Slate republished a Quora page: "What Happens if You Misplace Your Weapon on Deployment?
The answer came from Henryk Bronislaw Hinkle-Zaleski Jr., an Army officer who had done one deployment in Iraq. "It matters," he writes. "Oh good heavens, does it matter. You cannot imagine the hell you would catch if you lost your weapon (or had it mixed up with someone else's)." Normally this is easy to catch, he explains, because of the serial numbers and the different adjustments soldiers make to their weapons.
But if you don't find it, "it's about to get bad.."
The first priority is locating your weapon. The military will literally shut down an installation to find an errant weapon. There is no stone they will not turn over, no length to which you will not be driven to find that weapon. They will recall everyone who was in your location for the last day, line them up, and read off serial numbers until they find it. I've seen people practically holding hands as they walk through the woods looking for a lost weapon. I've seen entire battalions placed on lockdown and forced to stay in their location into the wee hours of the morning, and they would still be there if the weapon were not located.Under the Uniform Code of Military Justice the lightest punishment possible under those circumstances would be a Company Grade Article 15. In addition to being docked a week's pay, that's two weeks of restriction (i.e., no leave) and extra duty and a one-grade reduction in rank (with the attending reduction in pay). If commanders aren't feeling so generous, or if (God forbid) this happens in a combat zone, it's a Field Grade Article 15: two months at half pay, two months of restriction, 45 days of extra duty and demotion of as much as three levels of rank.
After that hell of wasting hundreds of people's time, keeping people from their missions or their families or their personal time, after making everyone so insanely mad at whoever was careless enough to lose their weapon, what happens to you?
One commenter at AR15.com puts it cuts to the chase and puts it as only a grunt can:
[Y]ou [are] so very, very, very very, very very, fucked. Not just a little fucked, but a big old 55 gallon drum of concentrated, industrial strength, monitored by EPA and has to have a HAZMAT team on standby fucked.Needless to say this also goes on a soldier's record. For an enlistee things like this are possibly career-enders, since they may preclude further promotions and the Army has an "up or out" rule. For an officer, Hinkle-Zaleski explains, there is no ambiguity. "Your career is over. You may as well start looking around for a new job and hope you don't get a bad discharge."
So, Dave Evans really got off easy. As did, I should add, everyone else in the Missouri State Capitol that day.
But will they next time? Or will we have to wait for someone to get shot?
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