‘Hug-a-thug’ mentality: Missouri sheriff takes aim at state’s controversial gun rights law

Missouri

MISSISSIPPI COUNTY, Mo.– A southeast Missouri Sheriff is frustrated with crime in his county and is inviting local, state, and federal lawmakers to come to his community following a Labor Day shooting at a car show.

Sheriff Britton Ferrell with the Mississippi County Sheriff’s Department says four people were injured following a shooting during a Labor Day car show near Wilson City.

The gunshots sent the crowd of more than 1,000 people running for safety, forcing some families to take cover in ditches. Sheriff Ferrell said some parents and children were even separated during the scare adding to the panic.

The injured spectators were hit in the eye, forearm, back, and hand. The sheriff says the victims were driven to the hospital in their personal vehicles and are recovering.

He said his deputies and a Missouri Highway Patrol member did an outstanding job securing the scene and keeping people safe.

Officials say they found 26 shell casings and a 9mm gun at the scene. Sheriff Ferrell called this kind of behavior unacceptable.

He also had a message for state politicians about the recent passage of the Second Amendment Preservation Act (SAPA).

He said they should rethink legislation they are passing in Jefferson City because it affects real people.

“But with Missouri’s recent campaign of a ‘hug-a-thug’ mentality and enacting legislation like SAPA, telling criminals it is ok to be bad but while at the same time telling law enforcement we will get fired fined, or suspended, or prosecuted for protecting our communities, that is unacceptable,” said Sheriff Ferrell.

He called out politicians who he says are “grandstanding” for police reform just to get votes. He invited them to his community to see what is going on there.

Sheriff Ferrell says there are two gangs in his community and their actions are unacceptable.

Two men have been charged with the shootings. One man is from Cape Girardeau, the other is from Charleston, Mo.

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