Trump, time to remind gun owners of your commitment to them
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A former New Jersey private security guard who once faced felony charges for possessing a legally owned firearm was recently accepted into the Baltimore Police Department.


Steffon Josey-Davis, 26, was the victim of Draconian anti-gun laws in New Jersey that nearly left him defenseless. His case amassed attention in September 2013 after he was arrested and charged with a felony for leaving his legally owned firearm — a Smith & Wesson M&P Shield handgun — in his glove compartment.

After being charged with a felony, he was temporarily barred from voting and from purchasing firearms. He was also disqualified from most jobs he applied for. It wasn’t until June 8, 2015, that he was pardoned by Governor Chris Christie. On Jan. 29, 2016, his firearms rights were fully restored to him. 

Today, he is fulfilling his dream to serve as a police officer, something New Jersey’s gun restrictions could have prevented forever. 

What led him to apply to be a cop in Baltimore, Maryland, and not in his native New Jersey? The continual strife he faced from North Brunswick Police Department in New Jersey. 

Josey-Davis said to me, “New Jersey viewed me as a criminal, that viewpoint has now changed. Millions of people around the nation thought otherwise.” 

“After the pardon, I was pursuing North Brunswick Police Department. They denied me for my arrest, for which I had no criminal record. Thankful Baltimore City has allowed me to accomplish my dreams.” 

He also took comfort in hearing retiring Dallas Police Chief David Brown’s words imploring those in inner cities to take up a badge and serve their communities following the shooting deaths of five Dallas police officers back in July. 

“I believe (Brown) is correct, yes the people need to get involved if they want to fix the problem. Protesting and marching does nothing but cause chaos,” said Josey-Davis. “Chief Brown showed excellent leadership and handled that interview with a class. He represented that police department the right way.” 

Steffon isn’t the only American who was criminalized by gun control policies.

Single mother and concealed carry holder Shaneen Allen of Philadelphia was similarly pulled over in New Jersey on Oct. 1, 2013, while in Atlantic City to celebrate her son’s birthday. 

Her crime? Being in possession of a legal firearm registered in Pennsylvania. She spent some time in jail and was subsequently charged with unlawful possession of a firearm and unlawful possession of hollow-point bullets. 

Atlantic County Prosecutor James McClain said her case was a lost cause and that she would potentially face 3-5 years in prison. Momentum grew in Allen’s favor after it was revealed McClain was lenient in the handling of then-Baltimore Ravens star Ray Rice’s domestic abuse case. Like Josey-Davis, Allen was ultimately pardoned by Governor Christie on April 2, 2015. 

The cases involving both Steffon Josey-Davis and Shaneen Allen highlighted how dehumanizing gun control policies are for all Americans — especially those living in cities plagued by high crime. 

In spite of what happened to him, Steffon is optimistic that joining the Baltimore Police Department will allow him to improve community relations there. 

“I grew up in a rough neighborhood when I was younger. I know the struggles people face and what they go through, said Josey-Davis. “Having a officer who can relate and who is for the people is someone they need. These communities need officers they can trust.”

Now, Josey-Davis is in the process of writing a book documenting his experiences.

It is expected that gun control policies will be eased after President-elect Donald TrumpDonald John TrumpConway defends herself against Hatch Act allegations amid threat of subpoena How to defuse Gulf tensions and avoid war with Iran Trump says 'stubborn child' Fed 'blew it' by not cutting rates MORE assumes office on Jan. 20, 2017. While running for president, Trump pledged to repeal any executive action taken on guns by outgoing President Barack ObamaBarack Hussein ObamaBiden, Eastland and rejecting the cult of civility Biden lays out immigration priorities, rips Trump for 'assault on dignity' Democrats not keen to reignite Jerusalem embassy fight MORE.

Let’s hope he follows through on his promises to support laws that don’t criminalize law-abiding citizens.

Hoffman is a conservative media strategist and consultant based in Northern Virginia. Follow her on Twitter at @Gabby_Hoffman. She can be reached at

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