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Tuesday, November 5, 2013

Terror at Garden State Plaza: Is Smart Gun Technology the Answer?

By: Peter J. Lamont, Esq.
New Jersey Business and Personal Law Attorney
Law Offices of Peter J. Lamont

Last night a shoppers and employees of the Garden State Plaza Mall were terrorized by a 20-year old gunman from Teaneck, NJ.  Shortly before closing, Richard Shoop entered the mall wearing a black motorcycle helmet and dark clothes and carrying a .22-caliber rifle, which was reportedly legally owned by his brother.  The weapon had been modified to resemble an AK-47 assault rifle.

Shoop, who is reportedly a substance abuser, with a criminal history, fired multiple shots at the ceiling and walls.  While hundreds of people were frightened, thankfully no one was injured.

The incident is very surreal and terrifying. The mall is minutes away from our NJ office and is regularly frequented by New Jersey and New York residents.  

How can we reduce the possibility of similar incidents playing out in the future here and across the country?  Many would argue that the solution is the new "smart gun" technology that we discussed in a recent blog post.

These "smart guns", designed by Armatix,  a German company, will soon hit the market.  Guns equipped with the technology can only be fired if the person is wearing a wrist-band that emits a signal to the gun essentially, "unlocking" it.

A visionary New Jersey law adopted by the state legislature a little over a decade ago in 2002, requires that once the technology is generally available, all guns sold be fitted with the device. Three years after ready availability of the device, the law will come into full force.

So, in light of last night's events, do you believe that "smart gun" technology will prevent similar future incidents?  

Or do you believe that those wanting to commit criminal and violent acts will always find a way to obtain and use a firearm?

If you would like more information about this topic or have general legal questions, please feel free to contact me at (973)949-3770 or via email at plamont@peterlamontesq.com We answer legal questions on a daily basis and would be happy to discuss any issues or questions that you have with you.  Offices in: New Jersey New York, Colorado & Puerto Rico.  Affiliated throughout the country.
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