Connecticut Police raided the home of Joseph Callahan, 69, confiscated more than 270 guns and he was charged with several felonies, including 11 counts of illegal possession of explosives and six counts of first-degree reckless endangerment. Was Callahan really endangering anyone or planning some sort of terrorist attack? No, he was not.
According to Callahan's attorney, Richard Meehan, he is just a collector, a gun aficionado, and a hoarder. Meehan also claims that Callahan is a retired chemist and collector who had no "nefarious intent" when items were discovered at his upscale Fairfield home.
Joseph Callahan is even in the skeet shooting hall of fame, Meehan said.
"He's a gun collector, and they're all registered. They're all legal," Meehan told the Daily News on Tuesday. "In addition, he's an amateur rocketeer. He shoots off his own small rockets, and a lot of what he had was related to the rocketry."
Mr. Callahan previously worked at DuPont, a chemical company and also worked as a gunmaker at Remington Arms.
So how did police come to be charged with numerous felonies?
According to the Hartford Courant:
Officers responded to a report of a burglary at the house at 4:20 p.m. Oct. 1. There also was a report that hazardous materials appeared to be present, police said.
Explosive devices, more than 250 guns and tens of thousands of rounds of ammunition were found at a Bronson Road house, and authorities closed off the street.
No one was injured. By the next day, the explosive devices had been removed and detonated, police and fire officials said at the time. But potentially dangerous substances remained in the house and needed to be removed by professionals, they said at a press conference Wednesday morning.
Police inventoried and seized 274 firearms from the home on Wednesday, said Deputy Chief of police Chris Lyddy.
The New York Daily News adds:
The recovered explosives, meanwhile, had the power of an M-80 — a type of large firecracker — but not as dangerous as a stick of dynamite, according to Norwalk Patch.
Meehan said the firecrackers were "misunderstood as explosives."
Callahan was allowed free in lieu of bond with the condition that he help officials sort out the scene.
Meehan added that Callahan kept jet fuel at his home not for explosives-making but because he used it in two of his classic Corvettes.
Obviously the person from the NYDN doesn't know anything about M-80s. They are very small, but they are powerful and to even begin to compare them with a stick of dynamite in the same sentence is to distort the truth about the M-80.
Also, tens of thousands of round of ammunition were also confiscated.
The charges also mounted to claim that he was making homemade bombs, one of which was alleged that he was making for Rolling Stones guitarist Keith Richards. According to Callahan's attorney, it was nothing more than a pyrotechnic device for Richards just in case they ever met. Callahan had a friend that met Richards and informed Callahan that he enjoyed fireworks.
Not mentioned in many of the reports was the fact that Callahan is a chemist by trade and actually has a federal permit to possess explosives. Yet, the ATF was involved with the investigation and failed to cease and desist their tyranny against Mr. Callahan.
Callahan was arraigned on October 16. His attorney says he will return to court on November 5 and plead not guilty.
There is no limit to the number of guns one can own under the Second Amendment. Obviously, Mr. Callahan had a federal permit to possess explosives and quite frankly, I can drive 1 mile in any direction and get M-80s by the hundreds if I want them without a permit. So the bigger question is, why did law enforcement not follow the law here? Why did they drag this man through all of this? Can you say Police State? Can you say tyranny?