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The primer on the shotgun shell had already been struck by the firing pin. Mr. Witaschek kept the misfired shell on his home office desk as a memento from a hunt. Mr. Gest said that he’s “not a technical person, but we consider it operable.”

Unfortunately, even if the judge rules that it is inoperable, an empty plastic shells is illegal in D.C. for anyone who is not a registered gun owner. The same goes for spent casings.

The firearms laws in D.C. are, at best, pointless and absurd and, at worst, wildly unconstitutional. But until the courts overturn the laws, the least the attorney general should do is use his prosecutorial discretion fairly to all.

If Mr. Gregory was not a threat to society holding a “high capacity” magazine without a gun, then Mr. Witaschek should be treated the same.

Emily Miller is senior editor of opinion for The Washington Times and author of“Emily Gets Her Gun” (Regnery, 2013).