UPDATED 2/23: Los Angeles County Sheriff Jim McDonnell, quoted by the Los Angeles Times Tuesday in its detailed coverage of Monday’s slaying of a Whittier police officer during what began as a routine traffic investigation, reportedly declared, “We need to wake up. Enough is enough.”
He was referring to an apparent early release that appears to have put the suspect in this case, identified by the newspaper as Michael C. Mejia, 26, back on the streets. The newspaper is covering this crime almost by the minute as more details emerge.
However, KTLA News reported that the California Department of Corrections is now disputing that claim. The station noted that the DOC has stated that Mejia “served his full state prison terms as defined by law.” Mejia was released back on April 19, 2016, KTLA said.
But here are the basics, according to the newspaper:
“Court records show that Mejia was sentenced in 2010 to four years in state prison for robbery and was convicted in July 2014 of grand theft auto and attempting to steal a vehicle. He was given another two-year sentence.
“In July, he violated terms of his release and got 10 days in jail. He was arrested again in September after authorities moved to revoke his community supervision.
“He was arrested in January for again violating the terms of his release and sentenced to a combined 40 days in jail. But he was out again after 10 days, records show. Then, Feb. 2 he was arrested by East L.A. sheriff’s deputies for violating his release terms and ‘flash incarcerated.’
Mejia was sentenced to 10 days and released Feb. 11.”
Is it any wonder why many Californians have guns, and have bitterly battled in Sacramento against a far Left Legislature that seems intent on passing more gun control laws?
The Times has also reported that in the hours leading up to Monday’s deadly confrontation, in which veteran officer Keith Boyer was gunned down before his fellow officers shot Mejia, the suspect is believed to have also been involved in another fatal shooting before stealing the car that he allegedly was driving when he got into the Whittier crash that brought police to investigate.
One major question needs to be answered: With Mejia’s criminal background, where did he acquire the gun he allegedly used?
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California has some of the strictest gun control laws in the country. The so-called “universal background check” requirement evidently prevent the suspect from having a firearm.
A call to the Whittier Police Department was not immediately returned.
Gun control proponents have lately zeroed in on “universal background check” laws, passing initiatives in Washington and Nevada, and legislation in California and Oregon, while Maine voters narrowly rejected a similar measure in November. Invariably the campaign arguments are the same: Keep guns out of the wrong hands.
But such laws haven’t kept guns out of the wrong hands repeatedly in Washington State. And critics of such laws argue factually that many if not most high-profile mass shooters have passed background checks. That includes the killer in Isla Vista who gunned down three people and murdered three others with a knife.
Nor did it prevent the San Bernardino terrorists from getting the guns they used.