Law may allow guns in churches

In Florida, A Potential Mass Shooter Was Thwarted, Not By Gun-Control Laws, But In Spite Of Them

Up in Michigan, four families are mourning and several more are hurting because a school shooter’s warning signs of emotional turmoil mixed with gun possession were ignored.

But in Daytona Beach, police are cheering witnesses who came forward to identify and stop a potential mass murderer – instead of the ineffective gun-control laws that were supposed to do so.

As Cam Edwards, the pro-Second Amendment columnist for the website Bearing Arms, noted on Thursday, the 2018 Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School massacre in Parkland prompted gun-reform laws in firearm-friendly Florida that even Republicans supported and hailed.

Such “commonsense” gun laws, as advocates of gun control like to say, included a “red flag” law that permits the confiscation of guns from those whom a judge considers a threat to themselves or others, a three-day waiting period on buying a gun, and a ban on selling a gun to those under age 21.

Yet, Edwards wrote, “none of those laws had any impact whatsoever on a 19-year old accused of plotting to engage in mass murder at his Florida college.”

Daytona Beach police reported that 19-year-old John Hagins intended “to shoot up the campus” at nearby Embry-Riddle Aeronautical University.

“Instead, Edwards added, “the threat was averted because individuals who saw cause for concern spoke up instead of remaining silent.” 

A couple of other students tipped police about the plot, and they reacted quickly and seriously. 

According to the cops, Hagins posted on social media plans to bring a folding gun to campus by hiding in his backpack with “hundreds” of rounds of ammunition. Detectives reported that Hagins sold his car to buy the gun and ammo.

Hagins reportedly told other students on Snapchat that he wanted to “enact a Columbine.”

“We could have had a tragedy unfold today,” DBPD Chief Jakari Young said in a statement.

“Instead, these students reported it to the school and that allowed us to get to work right away and bring Hagins into custody before he could carry out his plans. We thank them all for seeing something and saying something.”

By the grace of God, those two students came forward and thwarted that plan,” Young added.

Edwards explained why those witnesses worked and the laws didn’t.

“At 19-years old, Hagins isn’t old enough to legally purchase a firearm in the state of Florida,” Edwards wrote.

“It also appears he bypassed the state’s three-day waiting period when he illegally obtained his gun, and the Extreme Risk Protection Order never came into play either.”

“Despite the restrictions imposed on legal gun owners in the wake of the Parkland shootings, Hagins had no trouble whatsoever selling his car and buying guns and ammo on the black market in a matter of hours,” Edwards continued.

“If it weren’t for the fact that a couple of his fellow students saw his social media posts and alerted authorities, Hagins could very well have carried out his attack.”

Edwards pointed out that this, and not more laws, is the norm in stopping such attacks ahead of time.

He cited research by the U.S. Secret Service that found every school attack that was thwarted before it was executed was stopped because someone reported the suspect’s intentions to school officials or law enforcement.

“In fact, in 75% of those thwarted school attacks, the plots were discovered solely [emphasis original] ‘because of what the plotters’ communicated about their intent.’”

Edwards wrote, “Oddly, not one of the local media stories I’ve seen about this incident mention the fact that Hagins had no problem acquiring a gun and ammunition despite Florida’s ban on gun sales to under-21s and the state’s three-day waiting period on gun purchases.”

“If Hagins had successfully carried out his alleged plans, however, you can be damn sure that anti-gun activists would have loudly insisted that the attack proved the state’s gun control laws somehow didn’t go far enough.”

“Thankfully,” Edwards concluded, “because two students didn’t let Hagins’ alleged threats pass by without alerting authorities, countless lives may have been saved.”

“The gun control lobby won’t get the chance to exploit the senseless deaths of innocent victims. And we’ve all been given a very powerful reminder of what really [emphasis original] stops these kinds of attacks before they can be carried out; speaking out and saying something when we have evidence that lives are in danger.”

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One Reply to “In Florida, A Potential Mass Shooter Was Thwarted, Not By Gun-Control Laws, But In Spite Of Them”

  1. “If Hagins had successfully carried out his alleged plans, however, you can be damn sure that anti-gun activists would have loudly insisted that the attack proved the state’s gun control laws somehow didn’t go far enough.” And rightly so. You would rather count on mass shooters to announce their intentions rather than stopping the easy sale of black-market guns?

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