Washington, D.C. Man Facing Prison for Spent Shell Casings and Ammo Components

Mark Witaschek’s 16 year old son was in the shower when police beat in the door with a battering ram and pulled him out.

Over 30 police officers with rifles and “tactical gear” had entered the house that day with a warrant to search for “firearms and ammunition … gun cleaning equipment, holsters, bullet holders and ammunition receipts.” The police handcuffed Mr. Witaschek and his girlfriend while they separated Witaschek’s 4 children into an upstairs bedroom. They then tore the house apart looking for illegal firearms and ammo, causing what Witaschek estimates to be over $10,000 in damage to the house.

Mr. Witaschek was not a drug kingpin. He was not an arms dealer, nor even a person who kept a pistol illegally in a draconian state for some measure of self defense.

What they found in Mr. Witaschek’s house, after an hour and a half of searching, was the following:
“One Live shotgun shell” which Mr. Witaschek said was an inoperable shell that had failed to fire during a hunt, which he had kept as a souvenir.

“One expended round of .270 caliber ammunition”

“One box of Knight bullets for reloading”. These were actually bullets (just the projectile, no propellant) used for an antique muzzle loading black powder weapon

These bullets, designed for muzzle loading weapons, are no more than lead weights until loaded with charge

“One box of Winchester .40 caliber ammunition” Technically illegal in the state without a license, although a law totally thrown in the face of the 2nd amendment.

“One pistol holster”

“One gun-cleaning kit”

One civil war-era antique Colt pistol. Police seized this pistol even though antique weapons (such as this black powder pistol) are not illegal in DC and do not have to be registered.  

Hardly the work of a criminal mastermind or a credible threat to the public society. There was no reason on earth to tie up 30 plus police officers with “tactical equipment” to handcuff a couple, point rifles at the heads of an entire family, and spend 2 hours tearing apart a house.

Mr. Witaschek, who is an avid hunter, kept his guns at the house of his sister in Virginia. Shortly after the raid on Mr. Witaschek’s house, DC police showed up at her house in Virginia and asked to see the guns without a warrant in an area where they had no jurisdiction. She refused. A day later they showed up at her house with the Arlington County Police and a criminal subpoena.

Mr. Witaschek is now being tried mercilessly. The Attorney General, who recently wrote that he would not prosecute a news anchor who was in unregistered possession of a 30 round magazine on live TV because prosecuting him “would not promote public safety.” The Attorney General offered Witaschek a plea deal including a $500 fine and a year of probation. Witaschek refused on principal.

In the meantime, Emily Miller states, 3 murders happened in DC while these police officers were handling this nonsense raid.

So much for Protect and Serve.

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