A New York woman may spend up to 25 years behind bars after law enforcement seized prop and toy guns from her apartment last year.
Elizaveta Zlatkis of Forest Hills is still facing first-degree charges for criminal possession of a weapon despite the fact that 21 of the 22 “guns” confiscated from her apartment last December were airsoft rifles, toy replicas, or starter pistols.
Only one of the items recovered was a real gun, however, it had been rendered permanently inoperable after the internals and the trigger had been removed.
A friend of Ms. Zlatkis explained to the Queens Daily Eagle why she keeps these faux and nonfunctional firearms on hand.
“We do videos with them as props,” said a rapper who goes by the name Crucial. “I didn’t know you could actually get in trouble with all that. That’s wild. They’re fake.”
After posing for a photo op that applauded the NYPD’s Field Intelligence Officer and Special Operations Unit for “taking multiple guns off the streets” the department later acknowledged that the bust was a failure.
Great job yesterday from our Field Intelligence Officer and Special Operations Unit for a successful search warrant taking multiple guns off the streets of Forest Hills. pic.twitter.com/4oNwIeRjYp— NYPD 112th Precinct (@NYPD112Pct) December 28, 2019
“Firearms were recovered on Friday, December 27, 2019 in regard to a search warrant and deemed inoperable at a later date,” said Detective Denise Moroney, an NYPD spokesperson.
The obvious question is why is Ms. Zlatkis still facing charges?
As her attorney, Joe Murray lamented, “Not a single gun was real. I want to clear her name. She’s not a gangster.”
Apparently, none of that matters to Queens District Attorney Melinda Katz, who refused to drop the charges after Ms. Zlatkis turned down a plea deal.
Along with the first-degree weapons charge, Ms. Zlatkis faces several misdemeanor charges including possessing ammunition and endangering a child, a charge stemming from the first-degree weapons charge.
If that sounds crazy, that’s because it is crazy. Ms. Zlatkis’ “weapons” were not real nor functional, therefore, they did not place the child endanger.
Yet, it seems that DA Katz doesn’t want to take the “L” on this, instead, she is insisting that Ms. Zlatkis cop to something.
Meanwhile, Ms. Zlatkis’ life has been upended over the past year. She fears that any time she applies for a job, the first thing that will pop up during a background check or a simple search of her name is the first-degree weapons charge which, as mentioned, carries up to 25 years in prison.
“I look completely crazy,” Zltakis told the Eagle. “It’s humiliating.”
Adding insult to injury is the fact that while the DA is busy prosecuting her on trumped up gun charges, the state is releasing real criminals back out on the streets.
As GunsAmerica recently reported, almost 90 percent of suspects thought to have committed gun-related crimes in New York City have been released back onto the streets.
As a result, violence has spiked. Shootings are up 95 percent from last year through the first 11 months of 2020. (1,412 vs. 721) .
NYPD Commissioner Dermot Shea outlined the problem, saying recently, “We have made staggering numbers of gun arrests, taking guns off the streets from felons … but when you look, three days later, four days later, those individuals are back on the street committing more gun violence.”
Why is NYC wasting time and resources going after a young woman who is not a violent offender?
None of these efforts will “save lives” or curb gun-related violence. Lawmakers know that. So, why do they choose to put the screws to responsible citizens and businesses and ignore the real drivers of gun-related violence?
Actually, it’s worse than ignore, in the case of NYC, city leaders are actually fueling it via a bail scheme that allows for a quick catch and release of hardened criminals.
We know the answer, of course. Peddlers of gun control in government have no interest in reducing crime. On the contrary, they need it high so they can justify to their unwashed masses more incremental infringements on one’s right to keep and bear arms. For these ruling elites, the objective isn’t to stop the bad guys, it’s to prosecute and disarm people like you, me and Ms. Zlatkis.