A Vancouver, Washington man has cited advice from Vice President Joe Biden in his defense for allegedly illegally firing his shotgun to dispel suspected car thieves.
“Jeffery Barton, 52, pleaded not guilty to one count of illegal aiming or discharging a firearm at his arraignment in Clark County Court,” according to KOIN.com. “Barton reportedly admitted to deputies that he fired his weapon while chasing away people who he thought were breaking into his vehicles,” they added.
Barton told KOIN, “I did what Joe Biden told me to do.”
The advice from Vice President Biden came in February 2013 at a meeting. He stated that gun owners need only fire warning shots to ward off intruders:
I said, “Jill, if there’s ever a problem, just walk out on the balcony here … walk out and put that double-barrel shotgun and fire two blasts outside the house.” … You don’t need an AR-15 — it’s harder to aim, it’s harder to use, and in fact you don’t need 30 rounds to protect yourself. Buy a shotgun! Buy a shotgun!
Law enforcement officials responded to KOIN that it is against the law to fire a weapon without “a self-defense component, along with a life-threatening situation.”
The woman whom Vice President Biden gave the advice to later criticized the comments as “sexist,” stating: “I think it was poor advice and it comes off a little sexist, Like, ‘let me tell you what you need’ versus, you know, ‘arm yourself or protect yourself in a way that you feel necessary.'”