The judge overseeing the National Rifle Association’s civil corruption trial in Manhattan has expressed concerns over some claims brought by the New York Attorney General’s Office. The NRA argues that the office has failed to show “bad faith” by the NRA’s board of directors, and that only individual defendants violated internal policies.
Those defendants, meanwhile, argue that they are not true trustees of the NRA. According to a report in The Reload, Judge Joel M. Cohen said he had “enormous reason” to side with the individual defendants on the trustee question. If he does, the attorney general’s efforts to win restitution from the individual defendants, including former CEO Wayne LaPierre, or get the court to appoint a watchdog for the NRA, could be sunk. Cohen has given the parties until February 9 to file additional briefs. —Will Van Sant
At The Trace, we cover gun laws all the time, but even we get stumped about the particulars now and again. We regularly come across something unexpected or have to check with a legal expert for a refresher. That got us wondering how much Americans know about their gun laws.
To help you test your knowledge — and maybe learn a thing or two along the way — reporters Chip Brownlee and Jennifer Mascia put together a 12-question quiz, focused on federal laws around topics like background checks, concealed carry, and gun companies’ legal protections. So… how much do you know?
What to Know Today
As violent threats against members of Congress have grown over the past few years, particularly against women of color, so has congressional campaign spending on security services. Is it legal? [The 19th]
A Maryland state senator filed legislation that would impose an 11 percent excise tax on firearms and ammunition to help fund the state’s trauma care system and efforts to prevent gun violence. The lawmaker noted that 10 percent of patients at a state-run shock trauma center in Baltimore were treated for gunshot wounds last year. [Maryland Matters]
The FBI arrested a Tennessee man who was allegedly planning to join a militia group and “serve as a sniper” in a violent confrontation with federal agents at the southern border. The man was arrested after selling an unregistered AK-47 to an undercover agent; the criminal complaint against him states the man had a “war room” stocked with numerous rifles and a large amount of ammunition. [Court Watch/Rolling Stone]
Three years after the police killings of George Floyd and Breonna Taylor sparked nationwide racial justice protests, the death of Aaliyah Anders — shot by an officer in Lufkin, Texas, late last year — drew little attention or protest. It’s part of a wider problem, experts and activists say: The number of people killed by police is growing each year, but news coverage of those deaths isn’t. [The Texas Tribune]
Seven Things to Know About the NRA’s Web of Financial Misconduct: Breaking down the allegations in the New York attorney general’s lawsuit seeking to dissolve the gun group. (August 2020)