April 08, 2022
On March 27, the Gainesville Police Department responded to a call of a physical altercation around 2:00am. Adam Benjamin Cameron of Ocala and his girlfriend were walking with some friends when they were accosted and physically attacked by Antwan Jerome Downs who was with another group.
Downs allegedly struck his girlfriend in the face and pushed her to the ground, after which Cameron was also hit in the face with a closed fist. He was reportedly “bleeding profusely from his nose.” That’s when he got a gun from his car.
The Alachua Chronicle describes what happened next:
“The officer who arrested Cameron wrote that he observed the two groups in a verbal altercation and then saw Cameron produce a gun and pull the slide back to chamber a round. Post Miranda, Cameron, who does not have a concealed carry permit, reportedly said that after he and his girlfriend were attacked, he went to get the gun out of his truck ‘to defend them.’ He said he had chambered a round in the hope that the other group would leave.”
In the end all of this, Gainesville PD arrested Downs and charged him with simply battery under statute 784.03. This charge is misdemeanor of the first degree.
Mr. Cameron on the other hand was charged with carrying a firearm without a permit. Under statute 790.01, is typically a felony of the third degree and can result in Mr. Cameron losing his Second Amendment rights. Luckily for Mr. Cameron, he was only charged misdemeanor.
As a former law enforcement officer, I never would have arrested Mr. Cameron. Especially since he was the victim of a crime and was exercising his Second Amendment rights in an attempt to protect himself and his girlfriend from a violent attacker.
Let that sink in. The attacker, the guy who sucker punched a woman and a man in the face, was charged with a misdemeanor. All while the guy who defended himself and his girlfriend from the attack is lucky that he wasn’t charged with a felony. Which, last I checked, under Florida law. That was a very real possibility. When in reality, he shouldn’t have been charged with any crime at all. Yet, since he didn’t have a government issued permission slip in his possession and the government’s blessing. He was criminally charged!
THIS IS PRECISELY WHY FLORIDA NEEDS CONSTITUTIONAL CARRY!
Right now someone's Second Amendment rights, let alone their right to self-defense stops at the front door of their residence or the passenger cabin of their vehicle if they don't have that government issued plastic in their wallet.
So much for Florida being the "freest state in America" as Governor Ron DeSantis said back in January during the State of the State address. It doesn't appear so, the Republican led legislature has killed Constitutional Carry for year in a row during the regular session.
But that doesn’t mean all is lost. The Governor has called a special session into order.
Gun Owners of America was on the ground at the Capitol reporting it when it happened.
The special session starts on April 19 and remember, the Governor stated that Constitutional Carry is a crucial issue that he wants brought up voluntarily by the legislature. But if they don’t, he’ll take the actions that he needs to take to make them take it up. It is clear that Governor DeSantis understands what is at stake, but does the Republican led legislature?
So? What can you do? Simple!
If you live in Florida, go to Gun Owners of America's website and complete their action alert and tell Governor DeSantis that Constitutional Carry must be part of the upcoming special session. He can directly expand the scope of the special session to specifically include Constitutional Carry on the official agenda.
If you live outside of Florida, you can still do your part and help.
Call Governor DeSantis directly at (850) 717-9337 along with emailing him at GovernorRon.Desantis@eog.myflorida.com. Tell him that Constitutional Carry must be added specifically to the special session’s proclamation.
Luis Valdes is the State Director of Florida and Director of Outreach for Puerto Rico & U.S. Virgin Islands for Gun Owners of America. Please share this article and more importantly, the action alert. Together, we can expand freedom.