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Brian Aitken, “Convicted Gun Offender”

Brian D. Aitken was arrested and imprisoned for the possession of perfectly legal firearms. During the last of several back-and-forth trips from Colorado to New Jersey, where he was moving in order to be closer to his son, Aitken was arrested at his parents’ house. Apparently police located his handguns after a search of his car – unloaded, locked and secured in his trunk. This despite a New Jersey law exemption that should have made the possessions of said weapons completely legal.

“…exemptions allow New Jersey residents to have guns in their homes, while hunting or at a shooting range, while traveling to or from hunting grounds or a shooting range, and when traveling between residences. Brian Aitken claimed he was moving between residences, and there is pretty strong evidence that he was. Sue Aitken testified that her son was moving his belongings from her house to his. So did Aitken’s roommate. One of the police officers at the scene testified that Aitken’s car was filled with personal belongings. Yet Judge Morley wouldn’t allow Aitken to claim the exemption for transporting guns between residences. He wouldn’t even let the jury know about it.”  Reason Magazine

Vice just published an article by Aitken titled, MY LIFE AS A CONVICTED GUN OFFENDER WHO DID NOTHING WRONG. That title is telling – it conveys the very real fact that in many places, gun owners are being labeled (and punished) in the same light as convicted sex offenders.

I got sentenced to seven years in prison for legally owning guns. I had purchased them in Colorado and brought them with me to New Jersey, home to some of the harshest gun laws in the country, where I moved to be closer to my young son. I complied with all of the regulations, but one day the police searched my car and charged me with unlawful possession of a weapon—even though my handguns were locked, unloaded, and in my trunk. The court said it was on me to prove that I wasn’t breaking any laws, which obviously was very difficult. When Reason magazine covered my case, it wrote, “Even the jurors who convicted him seem to have been looking for a reason to acquit him. But the judge gave them little choice.” Brian D. Aitken

The full text of the VICE article is here. The following vido is from Brian’s Indiegogo project. If you’re interested in supporting that, you can find the information you need here. His hope is to publish a book, take his case to SCOTUS and regain the right to see his boy. If what happened to him pisses you off (and it should), if you feel any sympathy for a man whose life has been turned upside down despite the 2nd Amendment and overwhelming evidence that he is in no way a criminal, consider buying a book.

His son is now 5. Brian hasn’t seen him in four years.