Facebook boy-with-gun pic: Governor wants investigation

The governor of New Jersey has asked the state's attorney general to look into what happened when child-protection services and police arrived at the house of a man who posted a Facebook picture of his 11-year-old son with a rifle.

The photo in question. Shawn Moore/Facebook

You thought it was all done bar the noisy debating. And even that was abating.

But not just yet.

After Shawn Moore posted a Facebook picture of his 11-year-old son, Josh, with a fetching .22 rifle, child-protection experts and police arrived.

Moore, of Carneys Point, N.J., was outraged. So was his lawyer. The police wanted to enter his house and examine the safe where he kept his guns. They wanted to know that his son would be safe.

The police, though, had no warrant.

Subsequently, the authorities explained that there was a heightened sensitivity, after the Newtown massacre.

New Jersey Governor Chris Christie is, however, not satisfied.

According to Fox News, the governor has asked his state's attorney general, Jeffrey Chiesa, to investigate "whether all applicable laws were appropriately followed, and to take any remedial, investigative, or other actions that may be required."

The governor is disturbed by reports that members of the Division of Child Protection and Permanency offered an excessively assertive attitude. The Department of Youth and Family Services has maintained its silence, citing confidentiality.

Moore's lawyer denies having asked for any further action to be taken, but he says he's happy for the matter to be fully examined.

He added, to Fox News, this cheery thought: "There's this really great reason why there's no charges and the case is closed, and that's because my client didn't do anything wrong."

Perhaps Christie's investigation will conclude that procedures weren't followed. Perhaps someone will be reprimanded, or worse.

However, when it comes to an emotive issue such as guns, there will still be those who believe that images such as the one posted by Moore will always incite heightened reactions, both for and against.

The police, it seems, have begun to provide their own details, prior to this investigation.

The Philadelphia Daily News reports today that police described Moore as "ranting" and being both aggressive and arrogant when they visited.

Worse, police said Moore smelled of alcohol and suggested that his wife, Julie, was none too pleased with her husband.

The police report, obtained by the Daily News, reads: "While we were waiting, Julie stood and spoke to us stating, Shawn has not been the same person since President Obama was elected. She stated he is obsessed with gun control, owning weapons, and his right to bear arms. Julie seemed embarrassed at her husband's behavior, however, she did not seem surprised."

Perhaps, then, any investigation by the attorney general might unearth even more polarizing facts and accusations.

I wonder if it will be finally revealed which of his Facebook friends contacted the police. That should be a polarizing piece of information.

 

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