Casagrande Calls On Cumberland Prosecutor To Drop Gun Charges Against Retired Teacher

Says she will introduce legislation bringing New Jersey’s treatment of antique guns in line with federal standards

Caroline Casagrande

Assemblywoman Caroline Casagrande

Assemblywoman Caroline Casagrande (R-Monmouth) said yesterday that the charges gun charges against a 72 retired teacher for transporting a 300 year old antique flintlock pistol are “ludicrous” and that the Cumberland County Prosecutor should dismiss the case.

Gordon Van Gilder, who taught in Millville for 34 years, faces 10 years in prison and the loss of his pension after a traffic stop last November during which he disclosed to the Cumberland Sheriff’s Officer who stopped him that he had the antique gun, unloaded , in his car.  Van Gilder’s attorney, Evan Nappen, said that his client was carrying a collectible and is being charged as if he was carrying a loaded .44 magnum.

Casagrande said she would introduce legislation in the Assembly that would exempt antique guns from New Jersey’s toughest in the nation gun laws.

“There is a complete lack of common sense when a 72-year-old man is facing a decade in prison for possessing an unloaded, 300-year-old antique pistol,” said Casagrande,  “Granting this exemption will put New Jersey in line with federal law that already exempts the possession of historic firearms manufactured prior to 1898.  Hopefully, the Cumberland County prosecutor will acknowledge the ludicrous nature of charging a man with no prior history and simply dismiss this case.”

Posted: February 20th, 2015 | Author: | Filed under: Assembly Republicans, Caroline Casagrande, Gun Control, Gun Rights, Guns | Tags: , , , , , , , , | 33 Comments »

33 Comments on “Casagrande Calls On Cumberland Prosecutor To Drop Gun Charges Against Retired Teacher”

  1. Why all of a sudden is Caroline Interested in This?? said at 9:41 am on February 20th, 2015:

    Seems Caroline is catering to the right wing side of the Republican Party. She may have a serious threat on her hands if Jim Keady–the victim of Chris Christie’s ‘Sit Down and Shut up’–decides to run against her and Mary Pat Angelini.

    First of all, Caroline should worry about getting NJ from being near last in unemployment; first in taxes; and speak out against her “master,” Chris Christie with his unethical behavior, and 7 or so bond downgrades.

    If Caroline was very serious about wrong doing in other counties, she would have spoke out against CC and Guadagno interfering with the criminal justice system in another county.


  2. Casagrandes' District Hit Hardest By Sandy said at 9:54 am on February 20th, 2015:

    Casagrande’s District (Beck’s and Angelini’s as well) was hit the hardest in Monmouth County. There are still people after two and a half years’ left without housing. Where have they been???? This should be the priority issue for all three of them. Yet Caroline cares about an incident in another county??? Let the legislators over there do the worrying Caroline. You have Sandy victims to assist!!!!


  3. Brennan Huff said at 11:21 am on February 20th, 2015:

    To the above poster (not posters since it is clear they are from the same person), who I assume is the same guy doing all of the Facebook “Friend” requests lately…real sneaky there lol….so someone trying to change a draconian law is now subject to being labeled as “right wing?” You’re kidding me right?

    Maybe if Democrats in other cities/counties took up the call to combat violent crimes in their areas then maybe they wouldn’t have to worry about having laws which restrict LEGAL gun owners from their rights. But I guess most are committed by law abiding citizens with those legal guns aren’t they….no one ever uses an illegal gun huh (sarcasm)?

    The point of the matter is that this man is being charged under an archaic that should be removed.

  4. Brennan Huff said at 11:33 am on February 20th, 2015:

    You really posted from the “Daily KOS,” what, the “Left-Wing Gazette” was having connecting issues? That site makes Breitbart’s columns look middle-of-the-road.

    Maybe you should look more closely at HUD and FEMA regulations and changes before making comments. Don’t make victims of Sandy into a political issue tool for your boss, it is despicable as well as offensive to us living in some of the hard hit areas.

    Maybe have some moral clout before posting BS for campaign gain.

  5. Jim Granelli said at 11:34 am on February 20th, 2015:

    @Why All Of A Sudden.

    It’s because of the travesty of justice that is about to fall in on this guy and because I and a whole bunch of people contacted all of our legislators.

    And, I think the Good Assemblywoman is capable of multitasking.

    So, why don’t you ask the DEMOCRAT legislators to get to work instead of taking potshots at someone who is trying to fix a serious wrong.

    Brennan Huff nails it on the issue.

  6. Wait Wait... said at 11:40 am on February 20th, 2015:

    Jim Keady….doesn’t he blast Nike a lot? Which I do say is admirable because of their “factories,” but I specifically remember meeting him years ago at a presentation he gave.

    Everyone was on board until he told us he owns stock in Nike lol.

  7. @Brennan said at 12:23 pm on February 20th, 2015:


    The first two posts were indeed written by the same person—ME! I am a Republican. Disappointed now??? I feel this county has bigger issues than a gun problem that took place in another county, that could be handled by another assemblyperson in that county! Lets take care of the homeless from Sandy first.

    If Ms. Casagrande was truly interested in dysfunctionality in other counties of this state, she could have “stood up, and spoke out” against Chris Christie and Kim Guadagno getting their friends free from a 43 count indictment! Now that was a true travesty of justice.

    Sorry to disappoint you that I am not a Democrat. And this time around, I will vote for Mr. Keady!!!

    BTW: I own stock in NIKE in a mutual fund–who the hell cares what stock someone owns, as long at it doesn’t interfere with someone’s vote. As far as I know, Mr. Keady is not an elected official. Not yet anyway.

  8. Brennan Huff said at 12:42 pm on February 20th, 2015:

    @ @Brennan (Jim S).

    I don’t care what “party” you are affiliated with. When you are wrong, you should still be called out on it. “Disappointed,” hardly.

    As I seem to remember, when Legislators pass laws, they are passed for the entire State…am I not correct? So, now I am just guessing, it does impact people in her district…still, just guessing… No one EVER tries to change a law based on an issue from another area or even state I guess, no one.

  9. Brennan Huff said at 12:47 pm on February 20th, 2015:

    Look, the point is that someone is being negatively affected by a clear error in NJ State law and she attempting to remedy that situation. This is a positive, especially in NJ, which I do not see why people have such an issue with that.

  10. Jim Granelli said at 1:00 pm on February 20th, 2015:

    @ @Brennan Huff, or whoever you are:

    Jim Keady who? Yeah, that will go far, ESPECIALLY if he is using the Daily Kos as a mouth piece.

    Are things perfect in NJ, HELL no. We can do better. But working against and handing seats over to Democrats is not going to solve your problem. That’s simply foolish.

    Apparently you don’t understand that the DEMOCRATS control the legislature and that they are standing in the way of economic improvement in this state. And you want to make it worse.

    Not saying Christie couldn’t do better, but you have this overly simplistic view of what is happening.

    You act as if people can only do one thing at a time, and yes Brennan is correct in saying that this law protects people in every county.

    I hope they grandfather cases such as the one that brought it to the forefront.

    And finally, have you no compassion for protecting people from a stupidly outdated law?

    And I don’t give a dang who owns stock in Nike.

  11. @ Mr. Granelli said at 2:50 pm on February 20th, 2015:

    Jim Keady who?? Let me introduce you to him. Whether he runs as a D or an Independent, he will be a formidable contender this November–something I am sure you don’t want to hear. Caroline and Mary Pat soared in the elections when the governor was at his highest in the polls. Today, he is at his lowest–and probably going lower.

    This election undoubtedly will be a referendum on the governor–not too good I may say.


  12. Jim Granelli said at 3:07 pm on February 20th, 2015:

    @ Mr. Coward, or someone who is afraid to put his name to his comment.

    Obviously you don’t understand sarcasm.

    As to formidable contender, what exactly are his qualifications for the job?

    What campaigns has he run before?

    Where is his support going to come from?

    So, we’ll have to have those answers first. But Caroline and Mary Pat have an immeasurable amount of support. You are trying to say that Christie = them, and that isn’t so.

    But the fact that nameless people here are using sites such as the Daily POS Kos and the Oregonian tells me he can’t get coverage here.

  13. Great idea, Caroline! said at 4:10 pm on February 20th, 2015:

    To all the detractors who are more interested in personally sniping at/tearing each other up (again,) this issue just came to light, was just on tv, and I think it’s more than appropriate to address antiquated laws, whenever they come up, as WELL as all the other issues which this active, involved, and smart lady is and has been addressing, the entire time she has been an elected official, in our behalfs- which is what she is there for.. I say, good job again, at being timely and relevant, and thanks, Madame Assemblywoman!

  14. Name (required) said at 4:16 pm on February 20th, 2015:

    @Granelli you can ask the same of for Christie Hanlon.We all know you wont she a Republican

  15. Jim Granelli said at 4:26 pm on February 20th, 2015:

    @ Mr. Coward Name (Required(,

    First of all, Christine Hanlon has NOTHING to do with gun laws or Sandy Recovery. She may have an opinion and I may get around to asking her when I next see here, you see; it really doesn’t matter what her opinion is as she is not an elected State Legislator.

    Secondly, I will bear witness to how much Caroline was invested and is still invested in the recovery. For example she was at dozens of meetings in Neptune.

    You know, you are looking sillier and sillier with your made up crap. Keep on digging your own grave.

  16. Name (required) said at 4:34 pm on February 20th, 2015:

    @ Granelli Your comments about Mr Keady

  17. Jim Granelli said at 4:47 pm on February 20th, 2015:

    @ Mr. Coward Name (required)

    So what about Mr. Keady.

    I stated my opinion. That’s what a comment section is for. And those comments were tame.

    What, are you some kind of PC wussy?

    It’s called free speech. You know, the kind of stuff liberals like to censor, while saying whatever they want?

    Get over it and get over yourself. Man up and put your name to stuff coward.

    You lose. AGAIN.

  18. Jim Granelli said at 4:49 pm on February 20th, 2015:

    NOW, if anyone wants to get back to the issue of this bill sponsored by Caroline, GREAT.

    I’m getting bored bouncing haters and liberals off the wall.

    Wait for it, wait for it, wait for it…

    Mr. Coward Name (required) will come back with a hateful comment.

  19. Name (required) said at 4:53 pm on February 20th, 2015:

    @Granelli most people yes republican also do not use there names.So get over it stop calling names bet you cant.

  20. Why was this man carryihg a gun???? said at 5:08 pm on February 20th, 2015:

    He and a companion were looking for drugs…that’s why! Was the gun for protection?? Who cares if its an antique, if its operable and functional–its a damn weapon! Perhaps Caroline should step back from this one and concentrate on bringing jobs to New Jersey and telling the governor he has pension obligations to take care of. Read the below for the story:


  21. Jim Granelli said at 6:01 pm on February 20th, 2015:

    @ Mr. Coward Name (required)

    Let me solve your problem first.

    I won’t so, get over it.

    Besides, how about you stop too, huh? Bet you can’t. That’s the problems with liberals, it’s “do as I say, not as I do.” Liberals insult people and call people crazy right wingers, racist and WORSE all of that time.

    How about YOU call out your liberal bretheren and make sure they stop, starting right at The White House. But you can’t and most of all, YOU WON’T

    So, I can also call you a hypocrite now.

    Now, as for you Mr. “Why was the man”

    Are you stuck on stupid son? It’s an antique, it hasn’t been fired in nearly 300 years. To quote, it was “unloaded” and it would have taken a long time to load it with powder and a ball. People would have run away laughing if he tried to shoot someone.

    He was no danger. Here, educate yourself before you open your mouth and insert your foot again.


  22. Jim Keady said at 9:25 pm on February 20th, 2015:

    I would like to address the comments that are related to me in this thread.

    1. I now live in the 30th District and I am an Independent. If I run for Assembly, it will be in the 30th as an Independent.

    2. There are number of local and state publications that have written about my work on challenging the Governor on the pace of Hurricane Sandy recovery, specifically the RREM program. Here are a few links:






    3. With regard to the Nike sweatshop issue, I worked full-time for 14 years advocating for Nike factory workers to get paid fair wages – in some recent cases for them to just get paid the minimum wage – and not be treated like machines. This is a story from the Jakarta Globe about a major wage cheating case I advocated on and won.


    I also produced an award-winning short documentary film on my work in this arena. You can watch it online at:


    As noted by one commenter, in the past I owned three shares of Nike stock. I owned this stock so that I could gain access to shareholder meetings with the goal of advocating for workers.

    4. As for my political experience, I served a term on the City Council in Asbury Park. Here is an editorial from the Asbury Park Press about some of the work I did there.


    I also ran for City Council in Asbury Park again in 2013. There are still approximately 300 ballots that were never counted in that race, despite the efforts we made in court with the assistance of then Monmouth GOP Chairman, John Bennett. You can read about that at the following link:


    I hope this clears up any misinformation. I hope now those on this thread can return to discussing the initiative that Assemblywoman Casagrande has put forth and whether or not it has merit.

    Peace, Jim “I will NOT sit down and shut up” Keady 🙂

  23. Jim Granelli said at 7:43 am on February 21st, 2015:

    @ Mr. Keady,

    Thank you for your factual response. Seriously, I mean that. Although, I do have a problem with the Daily Kos being one of your venues to get a message out.

    Now, that clears up whether you would be challenging Caroline because apparently “Why all of a sudden” doesn’t know all that much about you. Egg on his face.

    Actually, we are both very similar.

    I won’t sit down and shut up in the face of people like “why all of a sudden” and the other hateful, hollow and cowardly commentators who hide behind the computer screen THINKING they know everything about me or anything else for that matter.

    You know haters; sort of like the situation in Neptune where you THINK you know everything.

    Glad you cleared that up, Jim.

    Your thoughts on the merit of the issue?

    Have a good day Jim. 🙂

  24. There will be a purge of all Christie supporters! said at 9:57 am on February 21st, 2015:

    There will be a purge, and yes referendum of Chris Christie supporters throughout this state! Those Republican legislators that have over the last five years’ supported this unethical pig, by creating one of the worst economic environments; one of the highest taxed states; a series (7) bond downgrades; failed to say anything about CC’s use of state police and helicopters for personal use (and refused to divulge its costs, despite touting to be the most transparent governor in NJ history) must be removed.

    Sorry Caroline and Mary Pat, its time to go. Your usefulness in failing to speak out against this bully is truly apalling.

    Thanks for your service; I know you guys tried–but you failed.

  25. Jim Granelli said at 11:16 am on February 21st, 2015:

    @ There will be a purge

    Obviously, you haven’t heard that the Democrats are in charge of the legislature.

    The Republicans are not in power. There is only so far they can go with negotiating.

    BTW, you should have heard the Republicans this morning at the Convention, talking about such issues.

    So, instead of trying to take out good Republicans, why don’t you go help Republicans win in other districts and help take the majority, eh?

    Or are you just another “Jon Solonis wolf in sheep’s clothing” Democrat trying to stoke division among Republicans?

  26. Indeed there will be a Purge!!! said at 1:42 pm on February 21st, 2015:

    The process of dismantling the “Christie Republicans” starts this November.

    Mr. Keady will have my support–regardless what party he runs under. He has spoke out against the bully Christie. I have seen him on various news outlets–and quite frankly, I am impressed.

    What has two-thirds of the “all female” legislative team done while in office?? Mary Pat wants to make sure its illegal to have incest—ok, but that doesn’t affect my quality of life here in NJ. Taxes do; unemployment does; economic viability does. It seems the people benefitting from the Christie regime is Christie himself and his so-called “friends.”

    Remember them. These are the people he labels “friends” in order to circumvent ethics rules. This permits him to accept gifts, and plane rides, etc. Where the hell are our legislators looking to end this??

    Now is the time to rid ourselves of the Christie Republicans!!!!!

  27. Jim Granelli said at 1:50 pm on February 21st, 2015:

    @ Indeed

    Did you not see that Mr. Keady would not be running against the ladies?

  28. @Jim said at 3:11 pm on February 21st, 2015:

    Unfortunately I did–that is after “submit comment” was pressed.

    I guess lucky for them huh? Oh well, nice to dream I guess.

  29. 30th Legislative District; David Rible very Vulnerable said at 5:50 pm on February 21st, 2015:

    Another district occupied by “Christie Republicans.” Dave Rible, who made news several years ago, is probably the most vulnerable.


  30. Jim Granelli said at 7:12 pm on February 21st, 2015:

    @ 30th District

    Is that all you have?


    Besides it being old news, you REALLY don’t know the voting demographics of the the 30th legislative district.

    As they say “good luck with that”


  31. @Jimbo said at 8:48 pm on February 21st, 2015:

    Made an error. I forgot Jim moved from Asbury Park. Sorry for the error–that’s why there’s erasers on pencils.

  32. Relax said at 10:46 am on February 22nd, 2015:

    Guys, relax…Jim Sage is supporting CC and Mary Pat’s opponents. That’s means the ladies are a shoo-in!

    He’s the biggest cooler since William H. Macy…he hasn’t supported a winning candidate in years! Thanks Jim!

  33. Back to the topic, now: said at 11:45 am on February 22nd, 2015:

    Caroline,hands down,gave the best speech at the convention yesterday! She is smart, relevant, and totally in-tune with issues that desperately need addressing: some say she is that district’s weak link, simply because she is more philosophically conservative than the other two: if you haven’t checked lately, she is right on, saying they want to try and un- do some of the liberal Dem damage their majorities have wrought, and try and get our government’s heavy- handed regulations and taxation off our backs: she made a great case for making the Dems the minority,for once, in this off- year: it is a pleasure to watch her mature into one of our very best representatives today, in that pit they call Trenton! With Claire’s classy goodbye, yesterday gave many more hope than we’ve seen in the recent past- keep it up,and best of luck, lady!