Ever read one of those books about “100 strange but true laws”? I think New Jersey’s laws about owning guns should go at the top of that list.
Brian Aitken legally bought guns in Colorado and took them home to New Jersey. He was “caught” moving them from one home to another and arrested. New Jersey’s laws are so strict on where you’re allowed to have guns, it’s ridiculous. Brian’s lawyer said, “New Jersey gun laws are insane. It makes a criminal of every gun owner and forces him to prove his innocence.”
The big problem in New Jersey is that guns are illegal unless you meet a number of exemptions. And one of those exemptions says that you are allowed to legally take your firearms from the place of purchase to your house, from your house to go hunting, from your house to go to the shooting range, and from one house to another when you’re moving.
Brian was clearly not in violation of the law, but the jury for Brian’s case must have gotten confused, and the judge refused to tell them the exceptions again. So they convicted him. He went to jail and lost custody of his one-year-old son for a non-violent offense that he didn’t even commit!Fortunately, Governor Christie gave him clemency and he got out of jail. But the state still has his guns. And the judge is still convinced that owning guns at one time makes Brian a “dangerous” enough parent not to give him custody rights again.
Brian hasn’t seen his son in six years! Can you even imagine? He has no idea where he is and can’t find any information. So he wrote a book and took his story to the news station, hoping that something will turn up.
I sure hope this father and son can be reunited soon. And then, can we change those silly gun laws??