Politics

Report: Michigan Man Faces 20-Years in Prison For Posting AR-15 Photo and “Harmless Joke” on Snapchat

By Steve Gruber | February 12, 2020

A 20-year-old college student at Lake Superior State University in Michigan has been jailed for 3-months awaiting trial on terrorism related charges. His offense? According to multiple sources, Lucas Gerhard was arrested for posting a picture of his new AR-15 online with the caption, “this outta make snowflakes melt”. His post also included this, “and I mean snow.”

No really, that is it.

Lucas was using the app Snapchat with a group of friends when he posted the picture of his newly purchased rifle. The picture was later shared with other students in Gerhard’s college dorm in Sault St. Marie.

Lucas is set to face trial on March 18th in Chippewa County. He is charged with making a false report or threat of terrorism charges for the Snapchat post.

This is an unbelievable over reach of anti-gun advocates attacking a student, the son of a retired Marine, to show you what so-called ‘Red Flag’ laws will actually look like in practice if they are put on the books.

State lawmakers and a gun rights group on Tuesday called for changes to Michigan’s terrorism law after a Lake Superior State University student was charged for posting a photo of his rifle on social media and saying it would make “snowflakes melt.”

Lucas Gerhard, 20, faces the charge of making a terrorist threat over an incident that occurred in August. The maximum sentence for a conviction on that charge is 20 years in prison.

The night before returning to the school for his junior year, Gerhard sent a photo of his newly purchased AR-15 rifle to a group of friends on Snapchat. The text said: “Takin this bad boy up, this outta make the snowflakes melt, aye? And I mean snowflakes as in snow.”

Republican state Rep. John Reilly of Oakland Township in suburban Detroit is sponsoring new legislation to redefine the crime of making a terrorist threat or making a false report of terrorism.

“I never thought our society was so fragile that someone’s life could be ruined for telling a joke among friends,” said Reilly. ”It’s a travesty that the county prosecutor charged him with any crime, for something that is clearly and undeniably protected speech under the First Amendment.”

He said Michigan’s definition contains no requirement that any particular target exist nor any “reasonable person” standard, exposing people to charges for telling what Reilly called harmless jokes. [WXYZ]

 

This piece originally appeared on SteveGruber.com and is used by permission.

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