WASHINGTON, Jan. 11 (UPI) -- Officials in Washington said it was "a very close decision" but NBC's David Gregory will not be charged with possessing a large capacity ammunition magazine.
Irvin Nathan, attorney general for the District of Columbia, notified NBC in a letter dated Friday Gregory was in violation of the law Dec. 23 when, during an interview on "Meet the Press," he displayed "a magazine capable of holding up to 30 rounds of ammunition."
During an interview with National Rifle Association Executive Director Wayne LaPierre -- one week after the massacre of 20 children and six staffers at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn. -- Gregory also held up an ammunition magazine capable of holding five to 10 rounds of ammunition.
Nathan said the larger of the two magazines meets the definition of a Washington law against possession of "any large capacity ammunition feeding device regardless of whether the device is attached to a firearm" or loaded.
"There is no doubt of the gravity of the illegal conduct in this matter, especially in a city and a nation that have been plagued by carnage from gun violence," he said.
Nathan said the Office of Attorney General would not bring charges against Gregory or any other NBC employee "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 should be made aware that OAG's decision not to press charges in this matter was a very close decision and not one to which it came lightly or easily," he said.
Nathan cautioned NBC to "take meticulous care in the future to ensure that it is in full compliance with D.C. law" and said another violation "will be prosecuted to the full extent supported by the facts and the law."
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