In the aftermath of Tuesday’s mass shooting in a New York City subway, a guest on Joy Reid’s MSNBC show “The ReidOut” suggested that undercover NYPD officers should take to spying on out-of-state gun shows as a proactive measure to prevent firearms from flowing into the beleaguered city.
The New York Police Department has released the name of 62-year-old Frank James, describing him as a “person of interest” in the attack, which wounded 10 people. The incident took place around 8 a.m. Tuesday morning, when the suspect released two smoke bombs in a subway car in Brooklyn, and then opened fire. The motive for the attack remains unknown.
After New York City officials held a press briefing on Tuesday evening, Joy Reid spoke about the incident with a panel of guests.
“You will go to jail for having a gun in New York that you’re not licensed to have,” Reid observed. “If even New York City is dealing with this kind of a crisis, what do the rest of us do?”
One of her guests, Naveed Jamali, a national security analyst who claims to have once worked for the FBI, chimed in with his take on the issue.
“Look, we’re in an age of data,” Jamali explained, “and so the idea that we’re going to trace this gun back, and whoever had it illegally is going to be prosecuted, of course, that’s incredibly important. But here’s the part we very rarely go after, and that is to look at the data of where that gun came from. Did it come from a gun show? Did it come from one person who habitually happens to have guns stolen from them?
“And why isn’t that person being investigated?” Jamali asked. “Why isn’t that person being prosecuted? Why isn’t the NYPD going and parking out in front of gun shows and starting to take license plates down of people coming down from New York to purchase guns out of state? Look, if we can send NYPD officers out of the country, to help in counterterrorism, we should be doing the same here.”
It’s not the first time someone’s advocated spying on gun shows, and Federal agencies have long partnered with local police to scan the license plates of gun show attendees. And the Biden Administration has made more than a few demonstrably false claims about gun shows and background checks.
“We can talk about federal legislation,” Jamali continued, “but the reality is that we’re never going to have universal federal legislation when it comes to gun things, and it’s going to be up to the cities and the states to solve this.
“And if New York City is suffering from the proliferation of guns flowing through the iron pipeline, then New York City should be proactive, as Mayor Adams has indicated he would be, in disrupting that iron pipeline,” he said. “Going to the places where those guns are purchased, looking to prosecute people who are, you know, buying guns and then selling them that are used in crimes in New York City. It’s not just a gun user we have to go after, we have to go after the gun seller.”
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