Illegal to Carry Flintlock Pistols in New Jersey

From Townhall:

Where is there any justice in locking up a 72-year-old man for up to 10 years for having an antique flintlock pistol? I’m sure in the Garden State authorities can find frivolous reasons, but there really isn’t any justification for such a prosecutorial overreach.

NRA News’ Ginny Simone ventured into New Jersey to speak with Gordon Van Gilder, public enemy No. 1 in Cumberland County. Van Gilder is a retired teacher whose career spanned 34 years. He’s an admirer of 18th century artifacts and historical memorabilia and bought the pistol to go with his collection. The pistol featured in Simone’s report is approaching its 300-year anniversary.

Simone reported that Gordon was arrested last November while heading home after lunch. A Cumberland County Sheriff’s Deputy pulled over Gordon for a traffic violation, but wanted to search his car. Upon discovering a flintlock pistol in the glove compartment, Van Gilder said that another deputy wanted to let him go since he knew the firearm was an antique. The Sheriff disagreed. Van Gilder was arrested the following morning, and faces up to ten years in prison; three and a half to five years of that sentence must be served before parole can be considered.

To make things more absurd, the prosecutor in the case told Van Gilder’s lawyer­, Evan Nappen, who’s in the video; that ballistics test will be run on the firearm.

This case will impact Gordon’s pension as a New Jersey educator, his ability to vote, and his reputation. He will be a convicted felon if the State of New Jersey is successful in their crusade against him.

While Gordon noted that he was probably in violation of the law, he wasn’t if he was going by the federal statute, which exempts such a class of firearms. The conflict between state and federal laws is a constitutional question. Maybe this case will settle that egregious discrepancy.

Yeah, New Jersey is still one of the worst states in the country.


Van Gilder’s first mistake was in allowing the deputy to search his car, but being a law-abiding citizen and thinking he had nothing to hide, he complied.

The libs are constantly interpreting the Constitution and laws to their own benefit, so it’s apparent the sheriff is just being a hardass in this case, as is the prosecutor by ordering ballistics tests. And what about the value of the gun?

Let’s just hope the man gets a decent judge who will toss this out – if there is such a thing in the commie state of New Jersey.


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13 Responses to Illegal to Carry Flintlock Pistols in New Jersey

  1. skip says:

    ballistics test? Most firearms of this era are smooth bore,what they going to compare? Bet the gun has not been fired in 100 years.

  2. JenZ says:

    Oh brother! How do conservatives survive in states like that without having their heads explode from the insanity around them?

    • Kathy says:

      Amazing isn’t it, Jen? I’d say most of them left, from the license plates I’m seeing around here, but the few that stayed must be a tough bunch!

  3. Uriel says:

    It never ceases to amaze me in a world with so many problems and possibilities than someone’s envy, jealousy, and greed would find a reason to take aim at an elderly man for something he values that might only be in his keeping for a short time. BULLY! Perhaps we should review all the antiquated laws in that town and apply them to the ones who chose to bring him to justice.

    • Kathy says:

      Bully is right, Uriel, plus the sheriff is missing logic and common sense. Neither the man nor the gun are a threat – issue a warning and let him go.

  4. captbogus2 says:

    Black powder weapons are not even considered “firearms” under the law.
    They are classified as, “Pyrotechnic device.”

    • Kathy says:

      It would’ve been nice if this man and the sheriff knew that – especially the sheriff, since it’s his job to know the laws.

  5. Clyde says:

    Thank YOU, Bloomberg, Giffords Mark Kelly, Sarah Brady, and all the REST of the idiotic 2nd. Amendment haters for THIS travesty. I think these leftists ought to have to surrender THEIR armed guards FIRST. Assholes.

  6. vonMesser says:

    Isn’t this that wonderful Governor Christie’s state? Fat F want’s to be president?!?!?!
    Sheesh, what would they say about my 3# verbruggen cannon and MG34?

    • Kathy says:

      Yep, that’s Christie’s state, where he’s usually in one hot mess after another.

      VM, from what we’ve seen of this buttnugget sheriff, you’d probably be UNDER the jail for that.

  7. Hardnox says:

    The deputy and the prosecutor need to be fired on grounds of plain and simple stupidity.