Roosevelt Twyne, 25, works for an armored car company as an armed security guard. He was on his way home from work on February 8th when he was pulled over by police for the unholy sin of having tinted windows. Twyne, who happens to be black, informed police that he had his duty weapon on him, and presented the police with all of the necessary freedom permits showing that he was a legal gun owner. Then things took a turn for the worse.
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Pulled over last month on his way home from work in Roselle Park, New Jersey, for having tinted windows on his car, Twyne informed the police he had his work-related weapon in his possession. The police arrested him, claiming he was carrying both an illegally transported gun and illegal hollow-point ammunition.
According to Twyne’s lawyer, Evan Nappen, Twyne had a permit to carry a gun in the state. Nappen insists that permit should have covered the alleged illegality of transporting the weapon in his car. Nappen further points out the brand of ammunition in the car—supplied by his employer—is specifically listed as legal on a New Jersey State Police website.
The police insisted to Fox News that “Twyne was charged after it was determined that he was not in compliance with the specifications of the law pertaining to the lawful transportation of his firearm. These charges were approved by the Union County Prosecutor’s Office.”
The police said in a statement provided to a local TV station that Twyne had his weapon loaded and holstered on his person. Nappen says in an email that a legal requirement to “have a firearm cased and unloaded” under New Jersey statute 2c:39(6g) applies only if one is “transporting by way of exemption, which is inapplicable here. Mr. Twyne was transporting by way of his Chapter 58 NJ Permit to Carry a Handgun, not by way of inapplicable exemptions.”
Twyne is being charged under 2C:39-9(d), which states that:
“Any person who manufactures, causes to be manufactured, transports, ships, sells or disposes of any weapon, including gravity knives, switchblade knives, ballistic knives, daggers, dirks, stilettos, billies, blackjacks, metal knuckles, sandclubs, slingshots, cesti or similar leather bands studded with metal filings, or, except as otherwise provided in subsection i. of this section, in the case of firearms if he is not licensed or registered to do so as provided in chapter 58, is guilty of a crime of the fourth degree.”
There’s just one big glaring hole in the police and prosecutor’s case: Twyne had all of his certifications, permits, and was carrying a gun specifically approved by the government along with ammo specifically recommended by police, as Ammoland reports:
Twyne’s Permit to Carry a Handgun specifies the Smith & Wesson handgun that he was carrying at the time of the stop. Twyne also possesses a SORA (Security Officer Registration Act) Card, a New Jersey Firearms Purchaser Identification Card, and lawfully purchased/registered his handgun with a New Jersey permit to purchase.
The New Jersey State Police Firearms Information FAQ website specifically states:
“Ammunition lacking a hollow cavity at the tip, such as those with polymer filling, are not considered to be hollow point ammunition. An example of this can be seen with the Hornaday Critical Defense / Critical Duty, Car-Bon PowRball / Glaser Safety Slug and Nosler Inc. Defense ammunition.”
Roselle Park Police Officer Louis Plock, nonetheless, arrested and charged Twyne under NJS 2C:39-3F(1) (possession of hollow nose ammunition) for possessing the above-mentioned Hornady Critical Duty ammo.
Plock also charged Twyne with unlawful transportation of a weapon under NJS 2C:39-9D. This statute, however, specifically exempts people who are licensed or registered under chapter 58, and Twyne’s New Jersey Permit to Carry a Handgun was issued pursuant to chapter 58.
These are 4th-degree felony-level crimes with potential 18 months imprisonment for each.
Because of the arrest, Twyne is presently suspended from his employment.
Twyne’s attorney launched a fund raising campaign via Go Get Funding and they were able to raise over $60,000 from over 2500 people to help young Twyne.
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Realizing how idiotic the charges were, and that Twyne was actually in compliance with all of the onerous laws and restrictions, district attorneys eventually dropped all of the charges on March 13th. The Truth About Guns reports:
In a brief (not to mention rare) moment of lucidity, New Jersey prosecutors have dropped the moronic charges against armed security guard Roosevelt Twyne. The law-abiding gentleman was arrested for carrying a firearm while having a license to carry, and for possession of hollowpoint ammuntion that isn’t hollowpoint ammunition.
From the Union County prosecutor’s magnanimous announcement:
“This Office has elected to exercise its prosecutorial discretion and has administratively dismissed all charges pending against Mr. Twyne,” the office said in a statement to Newsweek. “It is not in the interests of justice to continue his prosecution.”
All’s well that ends well for Mr. Twyne, but New Jersey still has the arcane, convoluted, confusing, and downright stupid collection of violence-enabling victim disarmament laws that even their alleged professionals can’t figure them out. All the better to entrap you.