Veteran loses gun rights for 1971 misdemeanor marijuana conviction

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An Army veteran who retired after 20 years of service is fighting to win back his Second Amendment rights after learning during a gun permit application process that he can’t own one — he’s got a decades-old misdemeanor for marijuana.

That was back in high school, said Ron Kelly of his 1971 minor pot charge. And he had forgotten all about it when he tried to buy a .22-caliber rifle at a Tomball, Texas, Wal-Mart. The clerk informed him he didn’t pass the computerized background check, the Houston Chronicle reported.


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Federal law guiding the National Instant Criminal Background Check System says that any person who is convicted of a crime — even a misdemeanor — that carries the potential for two years in jail can be denied gun ownership, The Blaze reported.

Mr. Kelly said he had served a night in jail and a year of probation. He didn’t know of his loss of Second Amendment rights — and meanwhile, he estimated he fired more than 100,000 rounds while serving in the Army infantry.

“I am ashamed of the way my government has treated me,” he said in the Chronicle.

He’s since contacted his congressman and senator, asking for help to get back his gun ownership rights, The Blaze said.

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