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Honolulu police inform legal cannabis users to hand in their guns

Wed, 11/29/2017 - 05:30

Honolulu Police Chief Susan Ballard has mailed letters to area medical marijuana patients with registered firearms, saying they needed to give up their guns and ammo or turn them in to police — and the clock is ticking.

About 30 individuals with cannabis cards have been sent the letters so far, citing state firearm law as the reason to get rid of their guns, the Honolulu Star-Advertiser reported.

“Your medical marijuana use disqualifies you from ownership of firearms and ammunition,” the letter says, advising the gun owner has 30 days to surrender their firearms, gun permit and any ammunition to the agency or “otherwise transfer ownership.” Those wanting to register for a permit in the future, required in the state for gun possession, would need “clearance” from a doctor.

While some areas have pushed mandatory gun registration going as far back as the Sullivan Law in New York in 1911, and just six states currently require registration of some types of firearms, Hawaii is the only one to require the registration of all firearms through the county police chief — thus providing the Honolulu PD with a ready list of those with legal firearms in their jurisdiction.

Leafly News, a media outlet that covers marijuana legalization topics, confirmed the letters had been sent out and advises the news from Hawaii “may represent the first time a law enforcement agency has proactively sought out state-registered medical marijuana patients and ordered them to surrender their guns.”

That’s not to say the federal government and other states have been friendly to the concept of legal marijuana and guns.

Since 2000, Nevada has granted marijuana registration cards exempting those who hold them from state prosecution for marijuana-related crimes and one cardholder — refused a gun sale in 2011 solely because she had a card — filed suit in federal court against the government on First, Second and Fifth Amendment grounds. Last September the U.S. 9th Circuit Court of Appeals upheld lower court rulings in her case, saying that refusing gun sales to otherwise law-abiding cannabis patients does not violate their Second Amendment rights.

Last November, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives released a revised version of Form 4473, explicitly warning gun buyers “the use or possession of marijuana remains unlawful under federal law regardless of whether it has been legalized or decriminalized for medicinal or recreational purposes in the state where you reside.”

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Gun Review: Winchester XPR sets new standard for budget rifles

Wed, 11/29/2017 - 01:00

The new Winchester XPR rifle chambered in 6.5 Creedmoor. (Photo: Kristin Alberts/

From the gun that won the west to the bargain basement, Winchester Repeating Arms has now done it all with rifles. With little fanfare, Winchester entered an already-flooded budget rifle market, but did so with superior features and accuracy. The synthetic-stocked, bolt-action Winchester XPR is available in all popular deer calibers, plus some hot, new chamberings as well.

Make no mistake – the XPR is no Winchester Model 70, but then again, it’s not meant to be. Initially introduced in a non-assuming black synthetic, the XPR sets itself apart in fit and function. The trigger is the same fully adjustable unit found in the venerable Model 70, exceptional on a rifle of this class. A single-stack, dropbox magazine and target crown on the 20-26-inch barrels are also sweet.

Made in Winchester’s Portugal factory, the fit and finish may not match that of higher grade, Belgian or American made long guns, but the XPR was never intended to win beauty pageants. Price, regardless of caliber, is $549 black and $599 camo, with store prices even lower, making the rifles affordable, capable, and accurate.

On the range

The test XPR came in 6.5 Creedmoor, the year’s hottest caliber. After mounting a quality, but also affordable Leupold VX-II 4-12×40, the XPR proved quick to sight-in. An assortment of ammo challenged the gun’s range as both a deer slayer and target shooter.

Ammo brands tested include: Hornady American Whitetail 129 grn Interlock; Hornady American Gunner 140 grn BTH; Hornady Precision Hunter 143 grn; Winchester Deer Season 125 grn; Winchester Expedition Big Game 142 grn; Federal Fusion 140 grn; American Eagle 140 grn Match; and Nosler Trophy Grade 129 grn Accubond.

In addition to firing MOA with every brand of factory ammo, the XPR punched sub-MOA three shot groups with Hornady Precision and Winchester Expedition Big Game.

The Winchester XRP bolt-action rifle. (Photo: Kristin Alberts/

The Precision Hunter produced a best three-shot 100-yard group of 0.71 inches while the Expedition did 0.82 inches. All of the hunting ammo performed well out to 200 yards with the largest three-shot groups from the lighter bullets, yet still inside two-inches even with a 12-15mph crosswind.

Of the lighter bullets, the Nosler 129 grn held the tightest groups out to 300 yards, and would be my choice in that class.  It was at the extended ranges, where 6.5 Creedmoors usually dig in, that the XPR showed its favor for the heavier bullets in offerings like Precision Hunter, Federal Fusion, and Expedition Big Game.

At 300 yards, we were able to hold three-shot groups inside of two inches against the cross wind with all three of the aforementioned.  Though we didn’t expect the 22-inch pencil barrel to perform quite so well, it remained in the game at the four-inch gong at 400 yards we clanged with regularity.  With the capability of the XPR, the only thing we were wishing for was a BDC reticle in the Leupold scope.  While the 6.5 Creedmoor chambering really excels with a longer, heavier barrel, the Winchester XPR is a great entry point for shooters and hunters wishing to add the caliber to their repertoire.

It goes without saying that the XPR handled all the ammo with 100 percent reliability as we expect any rifle, especially a bolt action.  Though the 6.5 is far from a kicking magnum, Winchester’s Inflex recoil pad did its job of directing recoil away from the shooter’s face and keeping things comfortable on the range.

The easy to grip and easy to shoot Winchester XRP. (Photo: Kristin Alberts/

Features set the XPR apart

The XPR does its job, and does it well, due in large part to a quality barrel and superior trigger.  Winchester’s adjustable MOA trigger has made its way from the Model 70 to the XPR. Our test rifle’s puller broke just over 3.6 pounds on a Lyman digital gauge, with neither creep nor overtravel.  If triggers make rifles – and they can – this one’s a star.

But success takes more than a trigger alone. Prices may be low, but quality does not suffer.  The chrome moly button rifled barrels are all free-floated and have a well-recessed target crown.  A barrel nut joins that to the steel receiver. The blued steel is matte finished, almost to the point of appearing parkerized.  The three-round detachable box magazine is one of the best in its class, with locking points both front and rear.  Textured panels on the fore-end and pistol grip are aggressive enough for hunters in inclement weather, yet add to the sleek looks of the rifle.  Even with the scope and mounts, the gun weighed in at a reasonable eight pounds.

The bonuses don’t stop there.  No sirree.  The XPR may be a budget buy, but the features are worth much more.  The two-position right-sided tang safety is easy to manipulate even with gloves and also silent, but the real winner is the bolt release button. Located in front of the safety, the release button allows the bolt to be cycled while the safety is still engaged, a feature ideal for newer shooters but also safer for even experienced shooters clearing the chamber. A cocking indicator on the bolt shroud is also a quick and easy visual indicator for added safety.

Three other big pluses on the XPR bolt not found on most other budget rifles: durable and often more expensive nickel Teflon coating, short 60-degree bolt throw for ample scope clearance, and a design that allows the bolt itself to be stripped sans tools for complete cleaning.

We were pleased to pick up a Mossy Oak Break Up stock in addition to the standard black synthetic, and coming from someone who generally despises plain black furniture, that was a welcome and practical change, especially on the Wyoming flats.  With sub-MOA accuracy and great range, our 6.5 Creedmoor XPR is ready for both pronghorn and deer this fall.

The misses are small

Our only knocks on the XPR are more superficial than anything.  Whereas both the Savage Axis II and Mossberg Patriot are both available in wood-stocked versions, the XPR is synthetic only – for now, at least.  Luckily, the XPR can be had in multiple iterations of both Mossy Oak and Kuiu patterns. The inclusion of compact models for smaller-framed shooters is a plus, as well as threaded, suppressor-ready versions.

The Winchester XRP is also available in Mossy Oak camo. (Photo: Kristin Alberts/

The other hiccup in an otherwise flawless bargain system involves optics mounting.  While I do not begrudge the rifle for its lack of iron sights – many higher priced guns forego them as well – the cost of the XPR-specific one-piece bases and rings must be mentioned. The Talley mounts are fantastic quality and available for either one-inch or 30mm optics of any height, but the $69.99 retail price is undeniably high for a budget gun. I’d gladly put those mounts on my $1,000 rifles. However, somebody buying a sub $600 rifle likely wants more affordable mounts. On the plus side, by the time most hunters get around to buying and scoping their XPR, there will likely be other, more cost-effective scope mounting solutions.

With a trigger so sweet it sings to the target, and sub-MOA accuracy from an entry level rifle, there isn’t much not to like at this price point. Throw in all the additional features from a nickel Teflon short throw bolt that takes down without tools, to a best-in-its-class dropbox magazine and quality controls, and the XPR is hard to beat in its class.  Even if the XPR is a poor-man’s Model 70, it is proof you needn’t break the bank for a quality hunting rifle.

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Kahr teams up with John Tiegen for special edition Deagle

Wed, 11/29/2017 - 00:30

The special edition Desert Eagle boasts a Kryptex Typhon pattern with special engravings. (Photo: Kahr Arms)

Kahr Firearms Group collaborated with John “Tig” Tiegen, member of the Benghazi Annex Security team, to craft a special edition Desert Eagle designed to support military veterans.

For the project, Kahr donated 13 special .50AE Desert Eagle’s to foundations that aid military veterans and their families. The Deagles boast a Kryptek Typhon pattern with special engravings. Engravings include Tiegen’s logo and signature in addition to a Beyond the Battlefield logo — the organization Tiegen and his wife recently founded.

Tiegen, co-author of 13 Hours: The Inside Account of What Really Happened in Benghazi, said he is excited to be working alongside Kahr to help veterans.

“It’s awesome to be working with Kahr Firearms Group to provide these special edition Desert Eagles to 13 different organizations,” Tiegen said in a press release. “For me, it’s an honor to be in a position where I can help other veteran foundations raise awareness and money for the many different causes they represent.”

Each Deagle pistol is numbered 1 to 13 and Kahr says that four guns have been already auctioned off, raising roughly $40,000 for veteran foundations. Each organization chosen to receive the special edition gun was personally selected by Tiegen.

The list includes:

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FAB Defense spices up AR-15 builds with Mojo Magwell Grip

Wed, 11/29/2017 - 00:00

The Mojo Magwell Grip comes with a mask that attaches to the grip’s base. (Photo: The Firearm Blog)

Designed to turn heads at the range, the Mojo Magwell Grip by FAB Defense offers a more custom look without breaking the bank.

Constructed from reinforced polymer, the Mojo serves as both a flared and extended magazine well. FAB Defense says the flared design not only offers a unique look but also improves reload speed and firearm handling. The company says the magwell grip reduces magazine change times by 48-percent while allowing shooters to keep eyes on target.

Touting an interchangeable design, the setup comes with a base and standard rugged grip along with one mask. With five mask styles in total — Punisher, eagle, Spartan, skull and crusader — FAB Defense says the masks also act as a foregrip.

The magwell grip boasts easy installation in under one minute, according to the company, and does not require any permanent modification to the firearm.

Available in black, OD green and coyote tan the Mojo pairs with most AR-15 setups and features a budget friendly price just under $50.

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Those small ATMs are surprisingly bullet-resistant (VIDEO)

Tue, 11/28/2017 - 23:30

On the premise that you can always use a small gas station-style ATM for cover and concealment in an active shooter situation, Edwin Sarkissian grabs a surplus one for some destructive testing.

These light Hyosung-style mini-banks use a sheet metal cabinet with a reinforced interior around the cash machine portion to help deter the average crook with a pry bar from getting some ill-gotten greenbacks. These are typically UL 291-standard “business hour” listed safes. While not generally designed to stand up to firepower, Sarkissian and crew find that handgun rounds up to and including .44 Mags from a Deagle fail to penetrate both sides of the ATM, proving the cover hypothesis to a degree.

The same cannot be said for rifle rounds — especially when you graduate to .50 BMG.

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Armed homeowner comes out on top against 4 robbers

Tue, 11/28/2017 - 10:00

A north Harris County, Texas homeowner and former Marine was confronted by four males while standing in his driveway with his garage door open Friday night, and soon found a gun to his head.

Homeowner Alexander Borrego told Click2 Houston that his wife and children were inside the home when four teens grabbed him around 10:30 p.m. and pulled a gun on him. However, they were in for a surprise as Borrego, concerned about his family, had a handgun of his own concealed in his hoodie.

“As soon as I got my hand on my pistol I turned towards the guy that had the gun at the back of my head. I immediately removed the pistol away from my head as I began firing at those guys,” Borrego said.

The four ran from his home and one, shot in the chest and leg by Borrego, later showed up at a local hospital. The teen, brought to the hospital by his mother, is recovering.

“Sad, but I had my pistol on me and thank God for that,” Borrego said.

In an interview with Fox 26, the Marine, who left the service in 2009, stressed that he took action to protect his family.

“Before pulling the trigger, my last thought was ‘we’re all going to die right here because none of them are going to get in the house,” he said.

While police are investigating the matter and seeking suspects, the homeowner is not expected to be charged.

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A broken toilet in a Miami warehouse led to gunrunning ring’s downfall in 2004 (VIDEO)

Tue, 11/28/2017 - 09:30

The Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives revisited Operation Lost Wolf this week, an investigation that unraveled a South American gun smuggling ring.

In an 8-minute short released this week by the agency on the 2004 case, agent Ali Berisha relates how he was called to the scene of a flooded warehouse in Miami after two boxes of Bushmaster AR-15 lower receivers fell from a ceiling and cracked a toilet.

“Upon inspecting the receivers, we saw that they were drilled — the serial numbers were drilled on both sides,” said Berisha, going on to say that when tested they were found to be illegally converted to select-fire. Subsequent investigation at the site turned up Norinco AK-pattern rifles in garbage bags and Wolf-brand ammo boxed and sealed inside freezers.

The multi-agency investigation eventually focused on two Miami-Dade residents from Venezuela, Raul Demolina and Rafael Samper; Joseph Ruiz, a gun shop owner; and Rodney Sharp of Homestead. In all, at least seven individuals were charged at the end of the operation during which the feds believed the guns and ammo were intended for the two rival groups locked in a struggle in South America– the Revolutionary Armed Forces of Colombia and the United Self-Defense Forces of Colombia.

In all, some 700,000 rounds of ammunition were seized as well as over 200 firearms. Ultimately a number of the defendants plead guilty to their role in the operation although one, Sharp, fled to China. The group was estimated to have made $4 million in profit while in operation, fueled by extreme markups on munitions resold to overseas buyers.

It should be noted that Lost Wolf took place two years before the first of ATF’s Project Gunrunner “gun-walking” investigations– which grew into the infamous operations Fast and Furious, and Wide Receiver– aimed to track guns and ammunition headed across the border with Mexico, were established.

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CMC offers Match Precision Barrels for select Gen 3 and 4 Glocks

Tue, 11/28/2017 - 09:00

CMC debuts a both threaded and non-threaded Match Precision Barrels for Gen. 3 and Gen. 4 Glock pistols. (Photo: CMC Triggers)

CMC Triggers introduces a new line of Match Precision Barrels designed to allow Glock users to upgrade their pistols without extensive gunsmithing.

Offering three models, CMC Glock barrels are designed to work alongside Glock 17, 19 and 34 pistols in the Gen 3 and Gen 4 series. The drop-in barrels are precision machined from 416R premium grade stainless steel which the company says is both durable and corrosion resistant.

The barrels are six groove, cut rifled with 1:10 twist. Straight fluted for aesthetics, CMC says the Glock barrels are designed to offer improvements to the Glock set-up without breaking the bank.

“These are an affordable, ultra accurate, durable upgrade to your existing Glock 17,19 or 34 factory barrel,” CMC said in a statement.

The bead-blasted barrels serve up a satin finish and are available in three finish options — Stainless, Bronze TiCN and Black DLC — and are available with or without suppressor threads in 1/2×28 thread pitch.

The threaded barrels offer a price tag of $210 while the non-threaded versions slide in just under $200. CMC says barrels are expected to start shipping in December 2017.

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Sporting goods shop in Pennsylvania says Facebook pulled its ads over guns

Tue, 11/28/2017 - 08:30

The advertisement that cost Pennsylvania-based Sportsman’s Shop its Facebook marketing privileges. (Photo: The Sportsman’s Shop/Facebook)

A family-owned sporting goods store in central Pennsylvania told Fox News over the weekend Facebook pulled its advertisements over guns.

Jessica Keffer, marketing manager for the Sportsman’s Shop in East Earl, Pennsylvania, said the social media site applies its policy of prohibiting ads promoting weapons sales inconsistently — at the expense of small businesses.

“There seems to be a very strong political and cultural bias on the part of Facebook toward our industry,” she said during an interview with Fox and Friends Sunday. “We are not treated the same as your box stores. Dick’s Sporting Goods, Caleba’s, Bass Pro Shops — they all have the ability to advertise. We asked about that and their answer was ‘well they sell other things.’ We do too.”

The Sportsman’s Shop — the oldest gun store in Lancaster County — opened three miles down the road from its current location in 1954. The Class III dealer offers a selection of more than 2,000 firearms, suppressors and accessories — as well as outdoor gear and equipment for fishing, archery and hunting. It’s new location in East Earl also features an indoor gun range.

Keffer said she used Facebook’s marketing features without issue until one day last month when she noticed an ad for the store’s “Honor the Flag” sale had disappeared. When she questioned Facebook over the matter, staff referred her to the website’s policy against promotions for weapons sales.

Although the flagged advertisement didn’t promote gun sales itself, the Sportman’s Shop, in general, does. Therefore, Keffer explained, Facebook felt justified in revoking its advertising privileges.

“Social media has a marketplace that you really can’t touch any other way and in order for us to reach that marketplace, we need to be able to advertise,” she said. “Not being able to really just does our business and our industry a huge disservice.”

Sportsman’s Shop isn’t the only locally-owned gun dealer and range frustrated with Facebook’s policies.

Shoot Smart — a Texas-based gun range that bypassed local cable networks’ firearm bans by using images of puppies in their television ads — said social media advertising policies prove far more unpredictable.

“In the past, we have spent thousands on Facebook and Google AdWords, but then out of nowhere, our ads started getting denied,” said Jared Sloane, the range’s operation director, in an email to last month. “When we ask Facebook or Google why we no longer can advertise, it’s always the same response.”

The message, Sloane said, cites a “zero tolerance policy” toward ads explicitly promoting weapons sales, “which includes, but isn’t limited to promotion through gun ranges.”

“So, in turn, we deleted the link on our page that went to the store (a small part of our business),” he said. “We then created new ads and started fresh, but we were still declined.”

Advertising policies for Facebook and Google indeed prohibit ads selling weapons and explosives — though neither company mentions gun ranges.

“The problem isn’t the rules and why they prohibit the advertising, the problem is the inconsistency,” Sloane said. “Sometimes our Facebook ads are approved and sometimes they aren’t (majority of time), but then we will see an ad that another company is running that is flat out promoting gun or accessories sales. It makes no sense! We just would like a little consistency.”

Keffer said Sunday “it’s time the industry spoke up” about the issue, saying “I think we deserve the same right and the same treatment as any other small business.”

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