More Questions Than Answers

It was a small story buried on Page Two in the Montana section of the Missoulian.

“Troy woman charged with mailing loaded gun to U.S. Sen. Tester” read the headline. It’s troubling enough that any Senator, doesn’t matter what side of the aisle, receives a loaded gun in the mail. It was the final line in the story that really caught my attention:

An investigation found that the mailed gun had been seized from Cantlon in October 2014 and later returned.

Who seized the gun? Why was it seized? When was it returned? And the most nagging question: Why would someone return a gun to this obviously disturbed woman?

Cathleen Roselyn Cantlon, the woman charged with the crime, had been committed to a mental health institution. No mention of when or where.

More information would help make sense of this story. Still, it’s no freakin’ wonder the U.S. is the leader, by a long way, in gun deaths in the so-called “civilized nations” of the world.

UPDATE: There’s a bit more information in the Daily Interlake.  Not much, mostly court record stuff, but the last two paragraphs made for an interesting read:

A study conducted by the advocacy group Everytown For Gun Safety showed that of the 121,836 gun background checks conducted in Montana in 2014, just three mental health records were submitted to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System.

It placed the state at among the worst in the nation for firearms access for people with documented mental health issues.

If you appreciate an independent voice holding Montana politicians accountable and informing voters, and you can throw a few dollars a month our way, we would certainly appreciate it.

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Pete Talbot

'Papa’ Pete Talbot is first and foremost a grandfather to five wonderful grandchildren. Like many Montanans, he has held numerous jobs over the years: film and video producer, a partner in a marketing and advertising firm, a builder and a property manager. He’s served on local and statewide Democratic Party boards. Pete has also been blogging at various sites for over a decade. Ping-pong and skiing are his favorite diversions. He enjoys bourbon.

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