The Threat From Within – The Loose Cannon

While I am not ‘churchy’, I have always regarded the Ten Commandments as a very powerful instrument of social control, that, if complied with to the letter, contains, all of the regulations that a small community needs.

While all older generations are critical of those that follow, the position of the newest generations today has been complicated by their championing of the concept of ‘rights without responsibility’, reality TV and social media.

Many of these problem youngsters, who I shall call ‘the screen generation’, also do not like shooting as a sport, and cannot understand it.

I am also noticing a worrying trend amongst this generation of adolescents vindictively dobbing a shooter parent in to Police in order to secure revenge.

Their initial approach seems to be ‘this shall get mum and dad’s attention’. Tragically however, once Police attention is achieved, things dramatically get out of control with legal consequences that are often difficult to avoid, following.

For example:

  • A son called Police reporting raised voices as ‘domestic abuse’, when they were discussing finding the teenagers dope stash.
  • A vindictive daughter set Dad up for a breach of firearms laws by for example searching for Dad’s gun safe keys, opening the safe and calling the Police.
  • A daughter who was not prepared to turn off her telephone and go to sleep, got into a tug of war with her father over the telephone, she sustained a bruise and called Police to report an assault.


My wife, who is an English teacher, would I am sure tell you I am the least qualified person to give advice here. So, I won’t, and simply suggest you bring in experts as early as possible.

Speak to a psychologist, psychiatrist or family therapist and deal with the problem.

Don’t leave it to the legal system to be the first to deal with problem, and then only address symptoms.


Many of these attacks centre around finding the keys to the gun safe. This is usually not too hard, as most shooters conceal their safe keys at home in their underwear draw or somewhere equally predictable. This may work against an external thief who is not going to have time to conduct a thorough search, but it is not going to work against a bitchy daughter who has ‘wagged school’ to give herself all the time in the world to search through your things and find your safe keys, and who also may have an inkling of the likely hidey hole because she has either seen you place keys there, or knows how you think.

I now recommend that shooters keep their keys locked in a container that is itself locked and requires a digital code to open it. This presents an additional barrier that should help convince Police that you have done all in your power to prevent access to your gun safe by a spiteful child.


Avoid ‘hitting’ or ‘striking a child. Whilst ‘lawful chastisement’ is presently exempt from being an assault, a blow to the head, anything involving an instrument such as belt, and anything that inflicts any sort of bruise can trigger assault charges.

Most psychologists and psychiatrists are of the view there are better ways of punishment, which today usually involves the confiscation of a mobile telephone / keyboard / technology which often triggers drug like withdrawal symptoms that are far more severe than the harshest spanking.

Do not run the risk of an assault allegation.

One thing I have noticed is that shooters are aware of the threat that can be posed by a vindictive spouse, are often amazed when the unexpected activities of a petulant child undermine their sport. It slips right under the radar.

Don’t let it slip under yours.

You have been warned!

Simon Munslow

National Firearms Lawyer
P: (02) 6299 9690
M: 0427 280 962

Simon Munslow is a lawyer who has a lifelong interest in shooting, having acquired his first firearm at the age of nine, and has had an active interest in firearms law since writing a thesis on the topic over thirty years ago at University.
Simon Munslow practices extensively in Firearms Law matters throughout Australia.

He is a regular contributor to the Australian Sporting Shooter magazine’s website on Firearms law matters, has published articles on firearms reviews and firearms law, and occasionally is asked to comment in the broader media on firearms matters.

This article is written for general information only and does not constitute advice.
He can assist you with:

Criminal law & Administrative law and in particular that related to Firearms

• All firearms, weapons and game charges
• Avoiding & setting aside Apprehended Violence Orders
• Possession of unregistered firearms
• Unsafe transportation & storage matters
• Applications for prohibited weapons
• License Appeals
• Freedom of Information / Government Public Access matters
• Importation & Customs problems
• Advices & opinions related to Firearms law matters




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