Piatt joins others not enforcing conceal-carry ban

Piatt joins others not enforcing conceal-carry ban

State's attorney says she doesn't feel she could prosecute offenders

MONTICELLO — Piatt County State's Attorney Dana Rhoades has joined other officials in Illinois who say they will not prosecute anyone breaking the state's law banning concealed weapons.

In rulings in December and February, the Seventh Circuit Court of Appeals ordered the state to enact a concealed-carry law by June 9.

Earlier this week, the U.S. Supreme Court gave the state additional time, to July 22.

Some prosecutors and law enforcement officials say the federal courts have invalidated Illinois' law and therefore it's not right to enforce the law.

"Technically people could be arrested, but ethically I don't feel I could prosecute it because the law has been struck down," Rhoades said.

Illinois is the only state to have a ban on concealed carry.

"It is unethical for me to prosecute a person for violating a statute that has been ruled unconstitutional," she explained.

The Illinois Legislature has passed a concealed-carry bill on May 31 and sent it to Gov. Pat Quinn. Under the bill, Illinois would become a "shall-issue" state, meaning that applicants for a concealed-carry permit would get it although law enforcement authorities could attempt to block the permit.

Applicants would also have to receive 16 hours of training.

Prosecutors in other counties, including Madison, Peoria, Randolph, Tazewell and White counties, have already said they won't enforce the law.

Rhoades decided to clarify her stance because there had been "considerable interest" in the issue. She emphasized that law-abiding citizens who choose to carry a firearm "must act responsibly," pointing out that a valid FOID card is also required.

Champaign County State's Attorney Julia Rietz has not joined the list, agreeing with the General Assembly that training guidelines are needed.

"I am very concerned about making sure people are aware of their responsibility when they are carrying a weapon," Rietz said.

"I think it would be irresponsible to now come out and say I'm going to ignore the law as it exists today without that training component in place."

DeWitt County Sheriff Jered Shofner hinted in a Facebook post that he would issue guidelines this week if Quinn does not sign the law.

"The sheriff and our state's attorney will be moving forward to set policy on the concealed carry issue. Sign the bill Governor!" said the June 21 Facebook post.

The Associated Press contributed to this report.

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mark taylor's ghost wrote on June 22, 2013 at 8:06 am

Will someone please explain why these inadequate specimens feel the need to augment their manhood before they venture forth into the world. What is it about their physiology that is lo lacking and short coming that they need the metal device to compensate?

What is it about yourself that is so small and not up to the task of walking around that you must make up for it by carrying around a gun before you can even leave your house?

What happened? Why are you so afraid?

thirsdg wrote on June 22, 2013 at 1:06 pm

well if your so big and manly why are you so scared of people carrying a gun? i carry my gun for several different reasons.... one being that when a wanted felon is at my door and i call the cops to get him outta here and they tell me they dont just come pick up people because they have a warrant for arrest... ok, well i have told this guy to leave several times and he wont stay away, they dont care, and wont do anything about it unless he is already hurting someone. so knowing this guy usually carries weapons and isnt scared to use them on ANYBODY at the drop of a hat including police, and the police wont do anything to stop him. when this guy shows up at your door wanting money and a place to stay and starts getting violent because you refuse to help him i hope you have a good talk with the dispatcher pleading for her to send an officer while this guy hurts your family, i no longer rely on the police to "protect" me. if you need more reason than that id be more than happy to tell you several other reasons why i carry a gun but i hope you get the idea from the first. and yes i have had firearms training for self defense so im not just some ammature carrying around a gun, and i also pray i never have to use it, but if i need it its there.

mark taylor's ghost wrote on June 22, 2013 at 2:06 pm

The police don't seem to agree with your judgement that this person is threatening. Is that because they're incompetent or is it because your judgement flawed and perhaps biased?

I'm not scared of you having a gun. I am concerned that you have the all-too-common vigilante attitude that you feel like you need to take the law into your own hands on a daily basis.

Frankly, it sounds a bit paranoid.

GeneralLeePeeved wrote on June 24, 2013 at 8:06 am

There's a small problem with your example thirsdg.......you wouldn't need concealed-carry for the situation that you're describing.  You're already allowed to protect your home.  Sorry to spoil a perfectly good rant.

outoftownie wrote on June 24, 2013 at 8:06 am

Having a gun in the house for personal protection is NOT concealed carry. So even if concealed carry was not permitted, if that situation were to happen that someone was at your door threatening you, you can defend your home with your gun.

screwtech02 wrote on June 22, 2013 at 9:06 am

Without all of us that are supposedly afraid Mark, your 1st ammendment rights of freedom of speech would be null/void.  What part of "shall not be infringed" dont you degree holders NOT get??  I swear, 4-7 yrs of higher learning gets people lack of common sense??

Keep fightning the good fight Mark, when they come to check on you, just make sure your "papers" are in order.

mark taylor's ghost wrote on June 22, 2013 at 12:06 pm

My rights are well and fine and I don't need your fearful self to carry a gun in public in order to ensure them.

You seem to be quite paranoid. We'd all be better of if you didn't augment that by arming your inadequately small self before you feel safe leaving your house.

constantly amazed wrote on June 22, 2013 at 1:06 pm

You keep calling other people “inadequately small” and paranoid but you’re the one who is freaking out about something that is working in 49 other states…  And if you are so afraid of guns maybe you should move to Chicago where they have the strongest gun control laws in the country… oh wait and the most gun violence. Wait, I know you’re going to tell us they have strong laws because of the violence right? I don’t think thats the case but even if that were true it clearly does not work.

mark taylor's ghost wrote on June 22, 2013 at 2:06 pm

People can cross city lines and go to a gun dealer who will sell to anyone. I'm not freaking out about concealed carry; I'm just opposed to it.

More people who are, yes, paranoid and who feel inadequate carrying around more guns to make themselves feel better is a bad idea. Now we'll have our own armed vigilantes like the murderous George Zimmerman in Florida.

People will die.

Just know that Illinois is full of people who will serve on juries and who will have no reservations about sending a murdering concealed carrier to prison for life.

Bulldogmojo wrote on June 22, 2013 at 6:06 pm

Well screwtech (aka Joe American aka danvillian All pretty much the same mind of person) What part of "Not Unlimited do YOU not understand?

"Like most rights, the Second Amendment right is not unlimited. It is not a right to keep and carry any weapon whatsoever in any manner whatsoever and for whatever purpose: For example, concealed weapons prohibitions have been upheld under the Amendment or state analogues. The Court’s opinion should not be taken to cast doubt on longstanding prohibitions on the possession of firearms by felons and the mentally ill, or laws forbidding the carrying of firearms in sensitive places such as schools and government buildings, or laws imposing conditions and qualifications on the commercial sale of arms. [United States v.] Miller’s holding that the sorts of weapons protected are those “in common use at the time” finds support in the historical tradition of prohibiting the carrying of dangerous and unusual weapons."

Scalia DC vs. Heller

outoftownie wrote on June 24, 2013 at 8:06 am

There are limits on First Amendment rights. You cannot go to a crowded theater and yell "Fire!" when there is in fact, no fire. And First Amendment rights only apply in terms of the government. Try telling your boss a few not-so-nice things, and you might find out what the unemployment line looks like. First Amendment won't protect you.

In the same way, Second Amendment should have some limits too. I don't care if you have a pistol for home protection, or a shotgun or rifle for hunting or target shooting. But I don't like concealed carry. I think that would cause more harm that help. For the most part, if you do not go searching for trouble, then you will not find it. I don't trust anyone holding a concealed weapon, even if you think you are one of the "good guys".

I also don't care for assualt rifles, but that is a different subject.

I have heard guns compared to many other items, such as matches or knives, saying that those tools are dangerous too. But a tool is primarily for a different purpose other than use as a weapon. A gun has only one purpose, and that is as a weapon. And a weapon only serves one purpose.

billbtri5 wrote on June 22, 2013 at 11:06 am

yes, and that training should include "not carrying your pistol on the top of your car while driving"....

Lance Dixon wrote on June 22, 2013 at 7:06 pm

The best solution is a complete ban on wielding or carrying a gun in public. Hunters and sportsmen should be forced to transport guns in locked cabinets. This way anyone holding or carrying a gun in public (outside designated hunting or sporting areas) could be shot down immediately by the police. Then arrested and jailed for the crime of carrying a gun. There's no better way to wipe out gun violence. More people carrying guns means more gun violence and more intimidation. Not the world I want to live in. 

Orbiter wrote on June 22, 2013 at 9:06 pm

I don't think carrying a gun (concealed or not) is a great way to carry on one's daily life, and I certainly don't think vigilanteism is to be advocated.  But, honesty, I think drivers using cell phones (hands-free or not) are far more dangerous to the public than the ordinary citizen carrying a gun.

Tonymw62 wrote on June 23, 2013 at 7:06 am

...just like I wait for the "gangbangers" to exterminate themselves, I'll wait for these idiots to kill each other off. How many innocents will be killed because these mopes got bullied in High School. This is the perfect example of...thinking you're "Josey Wales" and in reality, you're "Frado".

The fact is...this is about power...or the illusion of power. 99% of these people were never in need of "protection" in the past. Never threatened or assaulted, EVER. So in the future, when they still aren't assaulted or threatened that feeling of power needs to be fed so they will escalate and make the situation appear.

As with the "gangbangers", I just hope I'm not in the area when the shooting starts...

45solte wrote on June 24, 2013 at 9:06 am

Yes, power. It's a slippery slope to casually surrender constitutional rights/freedom to the government. Don't have a gun, but, would fight against whatever constitutional gun-related rights the government wishes to power-grab away from it's citizenry. Go ahead and ridicule the perceived 'paranoia.' To do so suggests a naive blind trust and/or the ability to predict the future. Tell us what the future holds for America. Many of us don't know. If you visit only news sites that ridicule those who question their government, maybe read Drudge http://drudgereport.com/ once in a while. Maybe you are ok with the nature of recent government scandals, though. Many on the left seem to defend the actions, yet, if the table were turned... Blind trust. Not a good thing, historically. There are a lot of things in history that people could never have imagined their leaders/government doing, making for a rather easy slide into passive citizenry support of historically fateful events. @ Mark, ridicule all you want. It doesn't intimidate people into abandoning their views because you think they're un-manly (and whatever that means for women in your world view), paranoid, stupid, etc.  That sort of 'conformity' peer pressure tactic of adolescent youth isn't very effective with right-leaning adults.

mark taylor's ghost wrote on June 24, 2013 at 11:06 am

@ Mark, ridicule all you want.

It seems like that would just be extraneous.

Polls consistently show that consumers of right wing media like Drudge and Fox are the most misinformed people around. In fact, watching Fox makes you more misinformed than you'd be if you watched no news at all.

Fox News Viewers are the Most Misinformed

University Study: Fox Viewers More Misinformed

And many, many more...

Perhaps you would benefit from breaking your right wing media bubble and exposing yourself to actual facts and reality.

It's a slippery slope to casually surrender constitutional rights/freedom to the government. Don't have a gun, but, would fight against whatever constitutional gun-related rights the government wishes to power-grab away from it's citizenry.

Frankly, that sounds really, really, yes, paranoid.

Maybe you are ok with the nature of recent government scandals

Which "scandals"? Benghazi? Do you believe Obama and Clinton were running guns to al qaeda and ordered the murder of the Americans there and then covered it up because, you know, they hate America so much?

The IRS? Checking out clearly political Tea Party superpacs and other groups that were demanding tax exempt status for their political advocacy?

The NSA? Were you so exercised about this when it was Bush/Cheney doing it?

Or were you referring to some other faux scandal ginned up from the right wing fever swamps at Drudge, FoxNation, the Blaze, breitbart, redstate, etc?

Also, please consider using paragraphs.

45solte wrote on June 24, 2013 at 3:06 pm

Don't watch Fox news. Will look at those studies, to see how they define 'informed' (given that the links are associated with current-day institutions of higher learning). I do read outside the bubble often and see stuff like this (which I perceive as biased reporting):

'Greedy shoe companies making select sneakers needlessly exclusive paired together with consumer exuberance, desperation, and American gun culture on Saturday long enough to cost one would-be alleged robber his life.'


greedy capitalists/('American') gun culture = the bad guys

exuberance/desperation = innocents? paying the product the attention it requires to become exclusive?

What do they mean by 'gun culture'? Who are they referring to? What demographic? Conservative white folks? Urban 'youth'? Gun control has no effect on a 'culture' that thinks nothing of settling disputes through lethal violence. If you want to come down (law-wise) on a 'culture' that is harmful (violently speaking) to society, maybe thriving urban gang culture should be afforded priority ('prison pipeline' activists would lobby against prison sentences actually becoming a deterrent again, however).

Very frustrated with the anti-capitalist stuff. Financial collapse can bring about rebirth, but, the global backdrop against which it might occur seems to be shaping up to be quite worrisome (if you value liberty).

mark taylor's ghost wrote on June 24, 2013 at 5:06 pm

I'm not sure why the mere association of some of the surveys with "current-day institutions of higher learning" would make you feel you need to question their methodology.

I applaud not watching Fox, but the misinformation on Fox seems consistent with the misinformed state of many consumers of a variety of right wing media. The following excerpts are from a Salon article on the misinformation effect of Fox News:

The studies all take a similar form: These are public opinion surveys that ask citizens about their beliefs on factual but contested issues, and also about their media habits. Inevitably, some significant percentage of citizens are found to be misinformed about the facts, and in a politicized way—but not only that. The surveys also find that those who watch Fox are more likely to be misinformed, their views of reality skewed in a right-wing direction. In some cases, the studies even show that watching more Fox makes the misinformation problem worse.


In 2003, a survey by the Program on International Policy Attitudes (PIPA) at the University of Maryland found widespread public misperceptions about the Iraq war. For instance, many Americans believed the U.S. had evidence that Saddam Hussein’s Iraq had been collaborating in some way with al-Qaida, or was involved in the 9-11 attacks; many also believed that the much touted “weapons of mass destruction” had been found in the country after the U.S. invasion, when they hadn’t.


In a late 2010 survey, Stanford University political scientist Jon Krosnick and visiting scholar Bo MacInnis found that “more exposure to Fox News was associated with more rejection of many mainstream scientists’ claims about global warming, with less trust in scientists, and with more belief that ameliorating global warming would hurt the U.S. economy.”


In 2009, an NBC survey found...that Fox News viewers were much more likely to believe this misinformation than average members of the general public. “72 percent of self-identified Fox News viewers believe the healthcare plan will give coverage to illegal immigrants, 79 percent of them say it will lead to a government takeover, 69 percent think that it will use taxpayer dollars to pay for abortions, and 75 percent believe that it will allow the government to make decisions about when to stop providing care for the elderly,” the survey found.

Again, these quotes refer specifically to Fox viewers, but level of misinformation seems consistent with consumers of other right wing media as well.

45solte wrote on June 24, 2013 at 6:06 pm

Don't have the time to thoroughly read the studies, links today. Think what you wish, but, fwiw, if I fail to respond it's not because I am avoiding. I just won't be putting $8 in the budget/month to pay to access the NG online (which starts tomorrow?). They can obviously have whatever business model they choose and I as a consumer can decide what kind of 'journalism' is worth it to me to try and work into a monthly budget. American Thinker, NRO, JWR (Sowell), Drudge, etc. would rise to the caliber of need-to-find-a-way, budget-wise.

mark taylor's ghost wrote on June 24, 2013 at 7:06 pm

Well, we agree on one thing at least.

Steve Benen (now at maddowblog), No More Mister Nice Blog, Digby, Addicting Info, Amanda Marcotte, Salon, Media Matters, Talking Points Memo (for starters).