Joe Biden’s “Shotgun” Advice: Illegal in Delaware

We’ve had some fun this week with Vice President Joe Biden’s unexpected advice to a mother to buy a double-barreled shotgun “and fire two blasts outside the house” if she fears for her safety. The problem with that advice? In Delaware, where Biden lives, such action might be illegal:

A sergeant with the Wilmington, Del., police department explained to U.S. News that city residents are not allowed to fire guns on their property.

The sergeant, who preferred not to be identified, said that Wilmington residents are also not allowed to shoot trespassers. “On your property you can’t just shoot someone,” he said. “You have to really feel that your life is being threatened.”

Defense attorney John Garey—a former Delaware deputy attorney general—agreed, and added that several criminal charges might result if Jill Biden took her husband’s advice.

“In Delaware you have to be in fear of your life to use deadly force,” Garey said. “There’s nothing based on his scenario alone” indicating a reason to fear imminent death, he noted.

Of course, Biden’s other option is to ask his Secret Service protectors to look into a situation. He’s not exactly bereft of options. [U.S. News & World Report]

Be respectful of our online community and contribute to an engaging conversation. We reserve the right to ban impersonators and remove comments that contain personal attacks, threats, or profanity, or are flat-out offensive. By posting here, you are permitting Philadelphia magazine and Metro Corp. to edit and republish your comment in all media.

  • PSG1

    People who don’t know what they’re talking about should “just get out of the way” (quoting Biden in the debate against Paul Ryan)