I’m fairly pro-law enforcement. I don’t think they’re perfect by any stretch, but having grown up around police officers and their families, I also know they’re not the vile oppressors some would paint them as.
You’ve got good cops and bad cops on all levels, even in the FBI.
Yet a lot of gun control laws seek to exempt law enforcement–all levels of law enforcement–I guess because they figure that police can be trusted whereas you and I can’t.
Unfortunately for that argument, we’ve got this now former FBI agent to illustrate the folly of that kind of thinking.
A former Central Kentucky FBI agent pleaded guilty Monday to federal charges after he illegally took guns from an FBI storage office, according to court records.
Michael Van Aelstyn, 45, pleaded guilty to obstruction of justice and possessing an unregistered firearm, according to court documents. He was originally charged with possession of a firearm made in violation of the National Firearms Act, possession of an unregistered firearm, and unlawful transfer of a firearm to an out-of-state resident, according to a May indictment.
Van Aelstyn is alleged to have removed two illegal firearms from a suspect’s home, transported them to an FBI office for storage, and later removed them from the evidence room, taking them to his residence, according to court documents.
Van Aelstyn also gave an AM-15 multi-caliber rifle to a man identified in court documents as “MH,” and told him “he should not let anyone else know the source of that firearm.”
Another gun, a Cugir Mini Draco pistol, was allegedly destroyed by Van Aelstyn and thrown away, according to court documents.
Van Aelstyn also illegally possessed a 20-gauge Winchester shotgun with a sawed-off barrel, which was not registered in the National Firearms Registration and Transfer Record, according to the plea deal.
I somehow doubt he destroyed that Draco. At least, not on purpose.
Still, Van Aelstyn plead guilt to enough charges that he’s likely to be looking at a fairly lengthy stay in prison.
Now, I’m not about to say this is indicative of the FBI as a whole. I’ve got my issues with the bureau and how it conducts itself, but this isn’t what we typically see from them. This is downright criminal.
And yet, we’re led to believe that law enforcement should be exempt from certain gun control laws simply because they’re law enforcement.
That doesn’t hold much water for me.
Look, we’re all supposed to be equal under the law. It shouldn’t matter whether you’re an unemployed stripper or an FBI agent, the rules are supposed to be the same across the board. Exempting law enforcement from some gun control laws just illustrates that equal protection is a myth.
It shouldn’t be, but it is.
At least in this case, though, there were no exemptions for an FBI agent to skirt gun laws. It’s not that I like the laws in question, only that I don’t think someone should get a pass for what I’d go to prison for doing.