Man claims ‘Joe Biden defense’ after firing shotgun into the air

November 19, 2013

Well, this was bound to happen.

From The Columbian:

Jeffrey C. Barton wants an apology from Vice President Joe Biden.

The Vancouver man faces a misdemeanor charge of illegally discharging a firearm from an incident July 15 in which he says he fired a shotgun in the air to chase away three men who were allegedly breaking into his vehicles.

After pleading not guilty July 17 to the misdemeanor charge, 52-year-old Barton said that he was following advice from the vice president of the United States.

“I did what Joe Biden told me to do. I went outside and fired my shotgun in the air,” he said.

Barton’s comment on Biden refers to a question about home defense that Biden was asked in February. Biden responded that Americans don’t need semi-automatic weapons because a couple blasts from a shotgun will scare off intruders.

Clark County Sheriff’s deputies said that’s only allowed in self-defense.

Here's what Biden said in February, during the gun control debate:

"If you want to protect yourself, get a double-barrel shotgun. ... I said [to my wife] 'Jill, if there's ever a problem, just walk out on the balcony here, walk out, put that double-barrel shotgun and fire two blasts outside the house. I promise you whoever's coming in is not going to...'"

Aaron Blake covers national politics and writes regularly for The Fix, the Post’s top political blog.
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Juliet Eilperin | November 19, 2013