Second Amendment Foundation
12500 NE Tenth Place • Bellevue, WA 98005www.saf.org
(425) 454-7012 • FAX (425) 451-3959 •
SAF WANTS MINISTER INVESTIGATED FOR THREATS AGAINST GUN DEALER
For Immediate Release: 5/29/2007
BELLEVUE, WA – The Second Amendment Foundation is asking the U.S. Department of Justice to investigate a Chicago priest for threatening to “snuff” suburban Riverdale firearms retailer John Riggio during an anti-gun protest rally Saturday, May 26, near Chuck’s Gun Shop.
SAF founder Alan Gottlieb is sending a letter to Assistant U.S. Attorney General Wan Kim, head of the Justice Department’s Civil Rights Division, asking that the agency also investigate the Rev. Michael Pfleger for essentially encouraging a crowd of about 200 protesters to drive Riggio out of business. The gun shop has been in business for more than 30 years, and Riggio is the second-generation owner.
In a stunning audio recording of Pfleger’s remarks, the pastor of St. Sabina’s Church can clearly be heard stating, “John Riggio…we’re going to find you and snuff you out.” Moments later, Pfleger added, “We’re going to snuff out John Riggio, we’re going to snuff out legislators that are voting…against our gun laws and we’re coming for you because we are not going to sit idly.”
“It is common knowledge that the term ‘snuff’ is street slang, in Chicago and elsewhere, for killing someone,” Gottlieb said after hearing the recording. “If John Riggio, or I, or any other gun owner were to make that kind of public statement in reference to Rev. Pfleger, you can bet the authorities in Chicago, and the local and national press, would want us behind bars.
“We’re asking for a Justice Department investigation,” he explained, “because Rev. Pfleger incited his audience to take whatever action is necessary to put Mr. Riggio out of business. Chuck’s Gun Shop is a legal business, operating under both state and federal laws, and Mr. Riggio has a legal right to operate such a business.
“We simply can’t rely on the notoriously anti-gun Cook County prosecutor’s office for an unbiased inquiry,” Gottlieb said. “There is no doubt in my mind that Rev. Pfleger’s threats should be investigated. You cannot hide behind the color of political rhetoric or a clergyman’s robe when you publicly declare that someone ought to be harmed and deprived of his civil rights and livelihood.”