Guns returned to blind FL man who ‘stood his ground’ against drinking buddy

rdowns

macrumors Penryn
Original poster
Jul 11, 2003
27,345
12,409
Apparently, run of the mill criminals are allowed to own guns in Florida.


John Wayne Rogers, a blind man acquitted of killing his friend James Dewitt under Florida’s “Stand Your Ground” statute, successfully sued the state to have his guns returned to him.

Prosecutors had charged Rogers with first-degree murder in the 2012 shooting death of his house guest and drinking companion, James DeWitt. Rogers’s attorneys contended that he was a blind man defending himself from a drunken guest, but the prosecution had witnesses willing to testify that Rogers can see.

Rogers claimed that he asked Dewitt and DeWitt’s girlfriend, Christina Ann Robertson, to leave after the trio returned from a 10 a.m. beer run. DeWitt refused, Rogers testified, so Rogers went into his bedroom and retrieved his rifle. When he returned to the living room, DeWitt charged him, and Rogers shot him in the chest.

DeWitt’s girlfriend, Robertson, told Seminole County deputies that the two men had been “play fighting” when Rogers shot him.

Rogers was freed from Seminole County Jails on January 9, 2014, mere hours after Circuit Judge John Galluzzo granted his “Stand Your Ground” motion.

Rogers, who was blinded in a work-related accident in 2001, has an extensive history of violence. In 2010, following another night of drinking, Rogers shot at his cousin and roommate, Michael Rogers, 15 times with a handgun. Michael Rogers was not shot, and John Rogers eventually plead no contest to one count of unlawfully displaying a firearm, for which he was placed on probation.

That probation was revoked when, in 2011, he punched a woman, which led to him spending 71 days in jail on domestic violence charges.

Despite this history, Rogers convinced the man who granted his “Stand Your Ground” motion, Judge Galluzzo, that the state had no right to keep his confiscated weapons.

http://www.rawstory.com/rs/2014/02/23/judge-orders-guns-returned-to-blind-fl-man-who-stood-his-ground-against-drinking-buddy/?utm_source=feedburner&utm_medium=feed&utm_campaign=Feed:+TheRawStory+(The+Raw+Story)
 

0007776

Suspended
Jul 11, 2006
6,474
8,051
Somewhere
Apparently, run of the mill criminals are allowed to own guns in Florida.
Considering it doesn't look like he was convicted what I find disturbing is that apparently you can own a gun even if you are blind and can't see what you are shooting at.
 
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Michael Goff

Suspended
Jul 5, 2012
13,262
7,298
Considering it doesn't look like he was convicted what I find disturbing is that apparently yo can own a gun even if you are blind and can't see what you are shooting at.
Obviously that is what the founding fathers meant when they penned the second amendment....

/s
 

tktaylor1

macrumors 6502a
Feb 16, 2010
788
0
Nashville, TN
Blind people and guns go together as well as blind people and cars. How are they supposed to know what they are shooting at? I guess that is why he unloaded 15 shots when 1 MAYBE 2 shots would've been sufficient. This has bad endings written all over it. Just because you have the right to own guns doesn't mean you should. I would put blind people on the list of people who shouldn't own guns.
 

lostngone

macrumors 65816
Aug 11, 2003
1,340
2,833
Anchorage
I still don't see an issue here.

1. Wasn't he acquitted of the crime?
2. His disability(if you see it that way) should not limit his Constitutional Rights.


What grounds does the judge have to withhold his property?
 

zioxide

macrumors 603
Dec 11, 2006
5,725
3,711
I still don't see an issue here.

1. Wasn't he acquitted of the crime?
2. His disability(if you see it that way) should not limit his Constitutional Rights.


What grounds does the judge have to withhold his property?
The guy is legally blind. Blind people shouldn't be allowed to own guns, period. It's a public safety threat and the judge legally can withhold his property if it poses a public safety threat.

Aren't the most important things in gun safety to never point a gun at anything you aren't intending to shoot, and always clearly identify your target (and what's behind the target) before shooting? How is someone who is blind able to do either? A blind man with a gun is an extreme danger to society.
 

lostngone

macrumors 65816
Aug 11, 2003
1,340
2,833
Anchorage
The guy is legally blind. Blind people shouldn't be allowed to own guns, period.
What other Rights do you feel a person with a visual impairment should not have?


It's a public safety threat and the judge legally can withhold his property if it poses a public safety threat.
He was acquitted, so again on what grounds?
 

thekev

macrumors 604
Aug 5, 2010
6,669
1,745
He was acquitted, so again on what grounds?
They may not have legal grounds (worthless state) to ensure this idiot can't randomly fire a weapon, but what I don't understand is given his history, why would anyone hang out with him, assuming he didn't have a gun pointed in their general direction? That he discharged 15 rounds on that other occasion while drunk should indicate that he is unable to safely carry a firearm. That they were in his house is beside the point if they were there legally. You may note that I'm not a fan of handling everything through prison sentences. Punishment isn't what matters so much as protecting others from individuals with a propensity toward violence. The history of violence should have prohibited him from owning a firearm. If necessary they could have allowed for a reinstatement of this right pending psychological evaluation. It's still disturbing that the guy can fire a gun without even being able to see where he is aiming.
 
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zioxide

macrumors 603
Dec 11, 2006
5,725
3,711
What other Rights do you feel a person with a visual impairment should not have?
We don't allow blind people to drive either. You really want a guy who can't see operating a car?

On the same token, you really want a guy who can't see to be playing around with a deadly weapon when he can't even see what he's pointing it at?
 

zioxide

macrumors 603
Dec 11, 2006
5,725
3,711
Driving is not a right.
Sure it is. It's not a Constitutionally-specified right, but it's specified by other parts of our legal codes.

You need to obtain a drivers license which legally grants you the right to drive.
 

Macman45

macrumors G5
Jul 29, 2011
13,196
133
Somewhere Back In The Long Ago
Considering it doesn't look like he was convicted what I find disturbing is that apparently you can own a gun even if you are blind and can't see what you are shooting at.
It just beggars belief.....they do have blind target shooting clubs over here,but the guns are kept under lock and key at the club, only coming out under supervision, where each blind member has a buddy who calls the target out using the click method.
giving a blind man a rifle and live ammunition is frankly insanity.
 

bradl

macrumors 601
Jun 16, 2008
4,006
11,823
Driving is not a right.
I would submit that gun ownership isn't a right either.

Based on District of Columbia v. Heller, there is precedence set that the 2nd Amendment isn't without limits. As such, to own a gun, you must submit to and pass various background checks. Upon passing those, you are permitted to own a gun.

That would, in turn, make gun ownership a privilege, not a right.

BL.
 

lostngone

macrumors 65816
Aug 11, 2003
1,340
2,833
Anchorage
I would submit that gun ownership isn't a right either.

Based on District of Columbia v. Heller, there is precedence set that the 2nd Amendment isn't without limits. As such, to own a gun, you must submit to and pass various background checks. Upon passing those, you are permitted to own a gun.

That would, in turn, make gun ownership a privilege, not a right.

BL.
Careful, if you want to walk that path then technically you have no Rights.

----------

Sure it is. It's not a Constitutionally-specified right, but it's specified by other parts of our legal codes.

You need to obtain a drivers license which legally grants you the right to drive.
No you have the privilege to drive, not the Right.

For example, they can legally take your drivers license away if you lose your sight.
However they can not legally take your gun away.
 
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thekev

macrumors 604
Aug 5, 2010
6,669
1,745
Driving is not a right.
While that is true, how would you deal with someone who is legally blind and shows a propensity for violent behavior? Limitations and consequences do exist with other rights. He was acquitted on this one, yet he does have a history.
 

bradl

macrumors 601
Jun 16, 2008
4,006
11,823
Careful, if you want to walk that path then technically you have no Rights.
Careful.. you seem to forget:

Declaration of Independence said:
We hold these truths to be self-evident, that all men are created equal, that they are endowed by their Creator with certain unalienable Rights, that among these are Life, Liberty and the pursuit of Happiness.
Everything else is granted, or allotted; as such, they can be taken away. see voting rights for felons, gun rights for felons, and assembly rights for sex offenders (they can't assemble on or near school grounds). Those rights, granted by the 1st, 2nd, 15th, 17th, 19th, 22nd, and 26th Amendments, were taken away.

No you have the privilege to drive, not the Right.

For example, they can legally take your drivers license away if you lose your sight.
However they can not legally take your gun away.
When you are arrested and convicted of a crime with a gun, you're bloody well right they are going to legally take your gun away. At that point, you become a criminal, and your Rights are severely castrated.

If you pose a danger to the public, they can confiscate your gun.

http://www.npr.org/2012/12/23/167896821/tragedy-spotlights-connecticuts-previous-efforts-at-gun-control

About a year later, Lawlor and his colleagues enacted a law based on the idea that there can be warning signs. Now, when someone reports to the police they believe a gun owner poses an imminent danger to themselves or to others, the police can get a warrant to seize the guns — even if no law has been broken. The guns can be kept for a year, and the law also allows for a mental health evaluation.
That law is still on the books.

BL.
 

tktaylor1

macrumors 6502a
Feb 16, 2010
788
0
Nashville, TN
1. Wasn't he acquitted of the crime?
Acquitted doesn't equal innocence. There are people who get off on insanity plea's all the time who are clearly guilty. There are too many loopholes and blood-thirsty lawyers know them all. It's just who is better at playing the game. This is a bad case to talk about this stuff because it is so bizarre. If he was able to see, I'm pretty sure the same choices would not have been made.

2. His disability(if you see it that way) should not limit his Constitutional Rights.
He has a disability. I'm not sure anyone would argue that. It's not a disrespect thing; it's just how it is, unfortunately. As I said earlier, just because you have the right to own a gun doesn't mean you should. I'm all for people being allowed to own guns but there are times when common sense should take over. He has the right to own the gun, just like he has the right to own a car, but that doesn't mean he should shoot it blindly (see what I did there:D) at things/people; just like he shouldn't drive the car.


What grounds does the judge have to withhold his property?
The judge has no right in this case. Zimmerman got his guns back.