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By Chuck Cassity | January 17, 2013
Had the Daily Pilot chosen to print my Jan. 9 essay, " Commentary: It's time to arm school personnel," on "gun-free zones" in its entirety, as I had requested of them, instead of leaving more than two-thirds of it on the editing room floor, our community would have had a chance to fully consider a common-sense proposal being embraced by tens of thousands of others to end school shootings once and for all. I proposed that teachers and administrators who...
By Jim Washburn | January 15, 2013
Re. "Commentary: It's time to arm school personnel," (Jan. 9): Chuck Cassity has the gun issue about as upside-down as a person can. To begin, he cites "the hysterical pleadings from the gun-haters. " The only hysteria I've heard is from his side of the issue: Citizens like Ted Nugent claiming gun-owners are America's new oppressed Rosa Parks; a host of others raising the specter of Stalin and Hitler, while Newport Beach barflies maintain the Sandy Hook Elementary School shootings were really done by a government black-ops team; all this World Wrestling Federation-worthy wrath capped by Tennessee's Tactical Response Chief Executive James Yeager posting, "I'm not letting my country be run by a dictator.
January 12, 2013
Re. "Commentary: It's time to arm school personnel,' Jan. 10: Twenty-seven people dead from gunshots. Twenty were children ages 6 to 7, all of whom had multiple shots to the head. One 6-year-old was hit 11 times, yet writer Chuck Cassity wants more guns in schools. He says the calls for regulation are "hysterical pleadings" that are "lamentable. " Those hysterical pleadings, sir, are the cries from the parents who had to identify their dead child through photos, rather than subject them to the horror of seeing their own beloved and innocent child in barely recognizable condition.
By Jeremiah Dobruck | January 9, 2013
The Newport-Mesa Federation of Teachers has twice asked the school district to support tighter gun regulations, but district officials say there are no plans to address the topic while school-safety discussions continue in the wake of the Newtown, Conn., shooting. The Newport-Mesa Unified School District began reevaluating its safety procedures the day of the Dec. 14 attack at Sandy Hook Elementary School, and the teachers union has offered its recommendations at two school board meetings.
By Lauren Williams | November 27, 2012
A Costa Mesa man reportedly drank cherry vodka and took prescription pills while singing along to a Guns N Roses song before he shot and killed his business partner, prosecutors allege in court documents. Thomas Michael Wilhelm, 48, reportedly belted out the lyrics "I used to love her but I had to kill her" from the song, "Used to Love Her," in his bedroom before visiting his neighbor and allegedly stealing a handgun. That gun was used to shoot Christine Murray, 45, according to a transcript of the grand jury indictment obtained by the Daily Pilot.
By Jill Cowan | October 17, 2012
How would you respond if someone opened fire at work? How should you respond? And what can you do to prevent such a thing from happening in the first place? Local law enforcement officers tackled those questions Wednesday afternoon at a lunch presentation hosted by the South Coast Metro Alliance's Business-Police Partnership. The event brought together various public safety agencies, area business leaders and school officials. About 64 people attended the lunch at the DoubleTree Hotel in Santa Ana. The alliance represents businesses near South Coast Plaza, where Costa Mesa and Santa Ana share a border.
By Lauren Williams and Joseph Serna | August 27, 2012
The private investigator who followed Costa Mesa Mayor Pro Tem Jim Righeimer home from a sports bar and called 911 to report him for drunk driving is a Marine veteran, a divorced father and a former police officer who spearheaded a program aimed at helping underage prostitutes, according to public records. Chris Lanzillo, 42, could not be reached for comment Monday, but aspects of his life can be drawn from court and newspaper accounts from the Inland Empire, where he is believed to reside, as well from military records and on Facebook.
From the Los Angeles Times | August 1, 2012
A UC Irvine professor accused in a series of arson fires following his son's suicide wrote in emails that he was thinking about getting a dozen machine guns and shooting at least 200 students at his son's high school before killing himself. Upset over his son's suicide, Rainer Reinscheid, 48, in April sent two emails to his wife and another to himself threatening to kill the assistant principal of University High School, shoot hundreds of students and burn the school to the ground in a “firestorm that destroys every single building.” The emails, which were filed in court late Tuesday by Orange County prosecutors, show Reinscheid wrote that he wanted to kill school administrators, sexually assault two female staff members and kill himself in the same spot his 14-year-old son, Claas Stubbe, committed suicide in March.
July 25, 2012
A man arrested by Newport Beach police on suspicion of carrying a loaded, unregistered gun and making threats is expected to be in court Friday for a pretrial hearing, records show. Henry Saxon Learmont, 36, of Castaic is accused of threatening a business associate while at Islands restaurant about 9:30 p.m. July 17, according to Sgt. Joe Cartwright. Upon arriving to the eatery at 1380 Bison St., police found Learmont in the parking lot in possession of a loaded gun and arrested him, Cartwright said.
By Lauren Williams | July 11, 2012
As children rode their bikes to the sound of leaf blowers on Wednesday, Redwood Avenue in Costa Mesa showed few signs that a neighbor had been killed there three days earlier. A child's smiley-faced basketball sat in the front yard, while a skull-and-crossbones doormat rested at the front door of the small house where police say Thomas Michael Wilhelm, 48, shot his former girlfriend and business partner, Christian Marie Murray, 45. FOR THE RECORD: An earlier version of the headline to this story should have attributed the accusation that Wilhelm stole the gun to his neighbor John Michael.
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