The Washington D.C. Police Department has completed their investigation of the incident on MEET THE PRESS, where host David Gregory displayed what was largely believed by many to be an illegal gun clip capable of holding up to 30 bullets that fits an assault type weapon. The matter is now in the hands of a Washington D.C. Attorney General to make a decision whether to press for charges based on police evidence.
Apparently, NBC had asked the D.C. Department for permission to use a high capacity gun clip for display purposes, but permission was reportedly denied. But, another story is that NBC asked permission from the Federal Government’s Bureau Of Alcohol, Tobacco And Firearms, the ATF, and this federal agency told NBC that it was acceptable to use a gun clip of this type for an illustration on national network TV. So lawyers for NBC might have some legal grounds to claim that federal law regulating firearms has precedence over any local ordinance regulating firearms. NBC likely sought some legal advice before the gun clip was used. But, that doesn’t mean that some legal error might have also been made here.
Whether the local prosecutor in D.C. decides to move ahead and file charges is not yet known. The next few days will likely tell the tale what happens next. But, there’s probably more than a few people who really want prosecutors to look at prosecuting real crimes that actually harm people, and not to look journalists who only play the “Devil’s Advocate” and promote a national debate for news purposes.