The District of Columbia’s attorney general this afternoon released a letter signaling that it will not prosecute David Gregory of NBC News’s “Meet the Press” in connection with his display of a 30-round gun magazine on the Dec. 23 edition of the program. Magazines that carry in excess of 10 rounds of ammunition are illegal in the District.
Following the show, bloggers raised questions as to whether Gregory’s on-air stunt constituted a violation of District law. The District police department later issued a statement that NBC News had asked if it would be okay if Gregory used such a item on air; the answer from the police was no. In a letter on this matter, D.C. Attorney General Irvin B. Nathan writes:
[Office of the Attorney General] has determined to exercise its prosecutorial discretion to decline to bring criminal charges against Mr. Gregory, who has no criminal record, or any other NBC employee based on the events associated with the December 23,2012 broadcast. OAG has made this determination, despite the clarity of the violation of this important law, because under all of the circumstances here a prosecution would not promote public safety in the District of Columbia nor serve the best interests of the people of the District to whom this office owes its trust.
NBC News has issued the following statement in response to the decision:
“We displayed the empty magazine solely for journalistic purposes to help illustrate an important issue for our viewers. We accept the District of Columbia Attorney General’s admonishment, respect his decision and will have no further comment on this matter.”