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298 Posts
Discussion Starter · #1 ·
From the Montana Shooting Sports Association comes this announcement regarding the case of David Olofson, whose AR15 malfunctioned when he loaned it to a neighbor, and he was sent to prison for illegal possession and transfer of a machine gun.

This affects all of us, as it is a heartbeat away from happening to anyone who operates any semi-auto weapon. I know my SKS could potentially "slam-fire", and if that gets reported, and some ATF agent wants his superiors to know he exists, I could end up in prison for nothing, like David Olofson.

Scott in Penfield

-------- Original Message --------
Subject: Olofson case denied by SC

Dear MSSA Friends,

A couple of weeks ago I let you know that MSSA had submitted an
amicus brief in support of David Olofson's request for the US Supreme
Court to review his case where he was convicted of illegal possession
of a machinegun because his AR-15 doubled. The BATFE tested
Olofson's AR and couldn't get it to double. Months later they
retested it using ammunition with soft primer cups and were able to
make it double.

I just got word today that the SC will not take the case. A message
from David's parents is pasted below.

I've learned that doubling of semi-auto firearms is not all that
uncommon, whether from wear, improper maintenance, sensitive ammo, or
other reasons. Given the outcome of the Olofson case, the status now
is that if your semi-auto doubles, you can be charged federally with
illegal possession of a machinegun. If you take it to a gunsmith for
repair, you can also be charged with illegal transfer of a machinegun.

Right, I agree.

Gary Marbut, president
Montana Shooting Sports Association
Montana Shooting Sports Association
author, Gun Laws of Montana
Gun Laws of Montana



To the MtSSA organization and members,

I am following -up the email I sent you yesterday. My son, David R.,
has just paid the final price fighting for our second amendment
rights. From his attorney Herb Titus:"We regret having to inform you
that about a half hour ago we received news that on October 13, 2009
the Supreme Court denied David's petition for review of his
conviction. We all had worked, hoped, and prayed for favorable
action. We tried to reach David, but because of the federal holiday
we will not be able to arrange a telephone call with him until
Wednesday, October 14 at the earliest."

We must continue to fight and stress the message that we must
continue the fight against the government's erosion of our second
amendment rights.

Please pass on and express our deepest concern, and yes outrage,
regarding the USSC denial of his petition. I am afraid this could be
the beginning of the end for our rights to own multiple cartridge
firearms under these decisions.


Dave & Pat Olofson

· Registered
298 Posts
Discussion Starter · #3 ·
He did not have an auto-sear in his gun. His legal counsel was never allowed to examine the gun. The first time the government tested it they couldn't get it to double. Later the ATF agent in charge ordered that they do the tests again - what "tests" they did not say. Why test it again? What was wrong with the first tests, that concluded that it was a "rifle"? And why did she proceed with her case 3 days before the second "test" was concluded? Only edited versions of the video of the tests exist, they deleted/erased the full tapes of the tests. When they tested it again, they specifically acquired ammo with softer primers, and the gun did experience "follow down", or "hammer follow", or whatever it's called, a few times. It is FAR from an "open and shut case", and for someone to be in prison for "transferring" a machinegun, when he loaned it out to someone who wanted to learn how to shoot, is crazy. When they first seized all of his property, they told him he would be charged with dealing without a license, because he had made a couple of transactions through and on ARFCOM in the previous couple of years, and they told him that sounded like dealing to them. That's suggests they were trying to "get him", not that the "machine gun" was the big deal.

You really can't take any testimony from the guy who actually possessed the gun at face value, because he was leaned on by ATF to say what they wanted to hear. I mean, he was the guy who was actually at the range with the "machinegun". Their documents claim that the ATF "paid" him and undisclosed sum of money for his testimony, too.

According to Olofson, he was on his third set of fire control parts with this gun (very old gun) when he loaned it out, and when it was seized, it had different parts in it than what he loaned out. It's hard to say if he's telling the truth or if the borrower is, but either way, there was NO EVIDENCE that the parts were tampered with to promote selective fire.

Anyway, you can read all the actual documents of the case, and the rundown on what all happened over time, at ARFCOM:

Olofson Part 3: Petition to the USSC (Ceriotari denied 10/13/09) - AR15.COM

There I found a link to a "Cliffs notes" version at The High Road:

US v Olofson - Cliff Notes Version [Archive] - THR

Whether he's guilty of something or not, his trial was not conducted properly, and there are SO MANY unanswered questions about that, which is why it is such a disappointment that the SC refused the case.

Scott in Penfield
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