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Day two of David Pecker testimony wraps in NY Trump trial; Supreme Court hears arguments on Idaho's near-total abortion ban; ND sees a flurry of campaigning among Native candidates; and NH lags behind other states in restricting firearms at polling sites.

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The Senate moves forward with a foreign aid package. A North Carolina judge overturns an aged law penalizing released felons. And child protection groups call a Texas immigration policy traumatic for kids.

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Wyoming needs more educators who can teach kids trade skills, a proposal to open 40-thousand acres of an Ohio forest to fracking has environmental advocates alarmed and rural communities lure bicyclists with state-of-the-art bike trail systems.

Texas town calls off rifle raffle after newspaper questions legality

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Friday, December 15, 2023   

Mass shootings across the U.S. have many calling for more gun restrictions.

But it wasn't until a Texas newspaper raised legal questions about a fundraiser a local police association canceled its holiday raffle for an assault weapon.

Jordan Buckley, publisher of the Caldwell/Hays Examiner, said the Police Association of Lockhart held the same raffle last year. His reporting found the group had only been a 501(c)3 nonprofit for two years, one year shy of being able to legally sponsor a raffle, according to state law.

He acknowledged some in the community were unhappy with the newspaper's sleuthing.

"We merely pointed out the fact that law enforcement was breaking the law," Buckley explained. "That's not a great brand. And in this case, raffling off weapons that kill lots of people, to be able to provide toys for kids for Christmas, it just seems ridiculous."

Following the Examiner's reporting, the Police Association of Lockhart announced it had canceled the raffle.

According to the Violence Policy Center, the Smith & Wesson M&P 15 -- which was the top prize -- was used in the mass shootings at Colorado's Parkland High School and in San Bernardino, California.

Buckley pointed out he supports holiday fundraisers, but feels a local police association in a small community like Lockhart should find more appropriate prizes.

"We've seen it before, elsewhere, where police are just tone-deaf to this cultural moment," Buckley contended. "And the horror that so many people confront when it comes to these weapons that are used for mass killing."

According to the Giffords Law Center, Texas has no law restricting assault weapons. As a result, researchers have found Texas is the leading source of weapons trafficked into Mexico; more than nearly every other state combined.


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