After seeing a photo of an 11-year old boy holding a rifle on Facebook (photo shown cropped), New Jersey police and Department of Children and Families officials raided the home of the boy’s father, Shawn Moore, a firearms instructor. Moore was not arrested or charged, but immediately sought the counsel of his lawyer.
Moore is a certified firearms instructor for the National Rifle Association, an NRA range safety officer and a New Jersey hunter education instructor. He posted a photograph of his son wearing camouflage and holding his .22 rifle. The photograph caused quite a stir, even though the boy has a New Jersey hunting license and has passed the state’s hunter safety course.
“Someone called family services about the photo,” said Evan Nappen, an attorney representing Shawn Moore. “It led to an incredible, heavy-handed raid on his house. They wanted to see his gun safe, his guns and search his house. They even threatened to take his kids.”
On March 16, Moore’s wife texted her husband to tell him that the Carneys Point Police Department and the New Jersey Department of Children and Families had raided their home. Moore quickly called Nappen and rushed back to his home to find police demanding to check his guns.
In response, Moore handed his phone to the officers so that they could speak to Nappen.
“If you have a warrant, you’re coming in,” Nappen told the officers. “If you don’t, then you’re not. That’s what privacy is all about.”
Moore, having heard what Nappen told the officers on his speakerphone, asked the officers to leave his home. He later wrote a post about his encounter on the Delware Open Carry website.
“I was told I was being unreasonable and that I was acting suspicious because I wouldn’t open my safe,” Moore wrote on the Delaware Open Carry website. “They told me they were going to get a search warrant. I told them to go ahead.”
According to Nappen, the police wanted an inventory of his firearms.
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