New CO Gun Law Could Have Disarmed Johnny Hurley

New CO Gun Law Could Have Disarmed Johnny Hurley

Two days prior to a violent madman with a vengeance being killed by an armed citizen with a concealed carry permit, Colorado Governor Jared Polis signed a bill that would allow any locality in the state to ban concealed carry. To be exact, the bill allows for counties, municipalities, special districts, and college campuses to ban what the terrified demanding moms kept referring to as “hidden guns” during the hours of bill testimony. For reference, Colorado has 64 counties, 217 municipalities, 2800 special districts, and 62 college campuses. The gun control extremists elected to the state legislature, along with the governor, somehow felt THIS was going to make society a safer place. Arvada proved a different story.

On Monday, June 22nd Johnny Hurley was in the Arvada Army Navy Surplus store when he heard 15-20 shots from a rifle or tactical shotgun in the square not even 50 yards away. A deranged individual had ambushed Arvada police officer Gordon Beesley, taking his life in a matter of seconds. According to first hand accounts of what happened next, Hurley exited the store in the direction of the gunfire. The madman briefly went out of view behind the library after firing the initial 10-15 shots. Johnny shouted at onlookers behind him to stay inside and hide because the gunman was coming back. Johnny used this as an opportunity to run towards the library where the shooter was and hide behind a brick wall. Upon the shooter walking again back toward the square, Johnny pulled out his concealed pistol and shot 5-6 rounds toward the suspect, killing him. What happened next remains under investigation, but Arvada PD has released that Hurley was shot by a responding Arvada police officer claiming Hurley was holding the shooters rifle. Arvada police are not equipped with bodycams, so the investigation is ongoing.

Situations like this are chaotic, fast, and fluid. Anyone who runs toward gunfire knows there is a chance they may not make it out alive. But heroes like Johnny are willing to take the risk, and we will never know how many lives Johnny saved that day, because when lives aren’t lost, it’s much harder for the gun grabbers to get a body count to exploit in an effort to push for their next ineffective gun control law.

Yet these are the people, the Johnnys of the world, are who our lawmakers wish to disarm, and laws like SB21-256 which I referenced above are evidence.  They never ask themselves how they can stop the madman. They will never ask if their fever pitch, yet hollow, anti-police rhetoric over the past year pushed this evil individual to feel he was justified in his desire to ambush police, innocent bystanders be damned. Hell, maybe this guy even believed he was doing it on their behalf. I say their rhetoric is hollow because it is. If they truly cared about law enforcement reform and decreasing citizen-police interaction, they wouldn’t create a bill that allows 3,143 different localities within the state to create different laws affecting gun owners of every race, gender, creed, and sexual orientation, which SB21-256 did. Their hollow virtue signaling is dangerous.

Johnny Hurley was a friend to many freedom fighters in Colorado. I met him briefly in 2019 when I spoke regularly about Colorado’s Red Flag law. He was a supporter and protector of all our rights. He spoke frequently about his desire to protect others, if need be.

According to friend Elliot Darling:

“He always had the gun with him, and we were always like, ‘What are you going to do with that?’ And he was like, ‘Well one day, you never know.’ And of course, that one day came, and he was prepared.”

Patrons who were in nearby restaurants when shots rang out continue to leave comments on a GoFundMe set up for Johnny by a friend, thanking him for his heroic acts.

“My parents and I were in the Schoolhouse restaurant when shots rang out. I have two small kids at home and I thought I would never see them again. John is a true hero and I am forever in debt to him. My heart breaks for the loss of his life. Prayers to his family and friends.” – Brittany M.

“John saved my and my girlfriends life. We were in the direct line of fire, in the So Radish restaurant. Bullets came through the window and we took cover under the table as the shooting continued. Knowing we were trapped and easy targets if the gunman came in, we ran to the back of the restaurant. I have no doubt whatsoever that if John had not taken an active role in stopping the gunman, many more innocent people would have died. I wish I could thank him in person and I wish I could give much more. I won’t forget him for as long as I live. Thank you John for your bravery!!!” – Tory F.

It’s also worth noting the store Johnny was in was not a gun free zone. Had it been, he may have left his firearm in the car, like gun rights supporter Denny Stong, who was killed unarmed during the March massacre inside a nearby Boulder King Soopers. Twenty year old Stong had just returned from shooting when he was killed. He had told friends and family he couldn’t wait to turn 21 so he could get his concealed carry permit. In Kroger stores like King Soopers though, even if he had been 21, that would have been against their “gun free” policy – a policy that does nothing to stop those wishing to do harm but certainly does stop many who don’t want to break the rules.

I’ll end with a powerful statement a friend and fellow supporter of the right to self defense, Greg Powers, wrote:

When the gun control extremists start with the narrative that citizens should not carry weapons or intervene in dangerous situations, our verbal response should be logical and directly to the point of motivation behind responding to these situations.

In Florida, Officer Scot Peterson was getting paid while he stood outside Marjory Stoneman high school for 48 minutes listening to rifle fire while a shooter walked through the school unimpeded. In Arvada, armed citizen Johnny Hurley voluntarily RAN toward the gunfire in less than a minute to save lives. He shot the suspect and ended the attack. If shit hits the fan near your loved ones, who would you rather have nearby?

Chances are unless someone is running errands alone, they will be out with friends or family. Eating Dinner, shopping, etc. They will be the first responder not only for themselves, but for their friends/family. Asking them to wait for police to respond and then interpret the situation (who/where are the bad guys etc.) is going to be too late. If an armed parent had been outside Marjory Stoneman when the shooting began, I guarantee they would have done the same thing Johnny Hurley did in Arvada and run toward the sound of gunfire. They would NOT be sitting outside for 48 minutes thinking “gee, I hope my kid is ok”

Rest in Peace Mr. Hurley.

Johnny Hurley will always hold a special place in my heart as a hero, right up there with Kendrick Castillo, the brave 18 year old young man who rushed a fellow student, and killer, during the 2019 STEM School Shooting. Because of Kendrick’s actions that day, none of his classmates died, although he did.

Here is a link to Johnny’s GoFundMe: https://www.gofundme.com/f/good-samaritan-john-hurley

Here is a link to an event to honor Johnny on Saturday, June 26th at 1pm in Longmont, CO: https://www.facebook.com/events/541045126925632

SPEAK UP! OPPOSE Colorado Gun Control So Extreme It Could Ban Firearm Possession In YOUR Community

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Take Action NOW! 

Please consider providing public comment/testimony during the hearings! This can be done either in person or remotely. If you are unable to provide public comment (and even if you do) please contact each member of the committees and ask they vote NO on these bills!

SB21-256 Local Regulation Of Firearms

• Repeals Colorado’s 2003 Firearm Preemption Law and replaces it with language that allows localities and municipalities to create their own firearm laws as long as they are not LESS restrictive than state law.
• This bill would allow for any county or municipality to ban the possession, sale, or transfer of a firearm or firearm accessory within their jurisdiction; and would allow any county, municipality, special district, or college campus to ban concealed carry.

House State, Civic, Military & Veterans Affairs Committee Hearing on SB21-256
Monday, May 24
1:30pm
(Note: Four bills will be heard in this same committee. SB21-256 is the fourth bill to be heard.)

Testify in person:
Colorado State Capitol
LSB-A
Denver, CO

Testify via WebEx:
Click here to register
(If you need instructions on how to register via WebEx or what to expect testifying in person, please visit our Legislative Watch page: www.rallyforourrights.com/legislative-watch)

Passed Senate Chamber on May 18, 2021.

HB21-1298 Expand Firearm Background Check Requirements

• Adds 11 misdemeanors to the list of background check disqualifiers.
• Removes the option for FFLs to transfer a firearm to new owner if background check is formally delayed for more than 3 days.
• Extends the time agencies have to review a background check denial from 30 days to 60 days, and allows for indefinite denial without disposition in certain instances.

Senate State, Veterans, & Military Affairs Committee Hearing on HB21-1298
Tuesday, May 25
2:00pm
(Note: Eight bills will be heard in this same committee. HB21-1298 is the fifth bill to be heard.)

Testify in person:
Colorado State Capitol
Old Supreme Court
Denver, CO

Testify via WebEx:
Click here to register
(If you need instructions on how to register via WebEx or what to expect testifying in person, please visit our Legislative Watch page: www.rallyforourrights.com/legislative-watch)

Passed House Chamber on May 17, 2021.

HB21-1299 Office Of Gun Violence Prevention

• Creates a new entity within Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDHPE) called the Office of Gun Violence Prevention.
• This office will be asked to “…increase the awareness of, and educate the general public about, state and federal laws and existing resources relating to gun-violence prevention.” That includes how to safely store guns, how to report a lost or stolen weapon, how to access mental health care and how to utilize Colorado’s Red Flag Law. They will also be tasked with so-called “evidence based” data collection.
• The office will also track and publish what local firearm laws are in place across the state, as they assume SB21-256 will pass (read below about this atrocious bill). They are requesting $3 million dollars for fiscal year 2021-2022.

Senate State, Veterans, & Military Affairs Committee Hearing on HB21-1298
Tuesday, May 25
2:00pm
(Note: Eight bills will be heard in this same committee. HB21-1299 is the seventh bill to be heard.)

Testify in person:
Colorado State Capitol
Old Supreme Court
Denver, CO

Testify via WebEx:
Click here to register
(If you need instructions on how to register via WebEx or what to expect testifying in person, please visit our Legislative Watch page: www.rallyforourrights.com/legislative-watch)

Passed House Chamber on May 17, 2021.

 


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Concealed Carry Banned Under Proposed Colorado Control Gun Law

Concealed Carry Banned Under Proposed Colorado Gun Law

In light of the tragic mass shooting at a King Soopers in Boulder, the gun control extremists in the Colorado legislature are taking aim at concealed carry. It should be noted the Boulder shooter did not have a concealed carry permit, nor did he attempt to conceal his firearm.

SB21-256 Local Regulation of Firearms essentially repeals and replaces the 2003 firearm preemption law in Colorado Revised Statutes which prohibits local governments from creating firearm laws that would differ from state law. This 2003 law is important because if each of our 64 counties and 271 municipalities had different laws regulating firearms, things could get pretty messy for gun owners who have every intention of obeying the law.

This bill would replace the preemption language with new language stating firearm laws are, in fact, a matter of local concern, and local governments can enact their own laws but ONLY if they are more strict than state law – otherwise those Second Amendment Sanctuary Counties would grow some teeth.

In the day and age of criminal justice reform being such an important and versed issue, it would seem most plausible they wouldn’t want to make it harder for people to obey the law. That obviously doesn’t apply to gun owners.

SB21-256 changes current preemption language to state a “…local government may enact an ordinance, regulation, or other law governing or prohibiting the sale, purchase, transfer or possession of a firearm, ammunition, or firearm component or accessory that a person may lawfully sell, purchase, transfer, or possess under state or federal law.”

This means any of those 64 counties or 271 towns and cities would be able to restrict firearms to whatever level their governing body should choose. Undoubtedly Second Amendment court challenges would follow…

The bill then goes on to add “…a local government, including a special district, or the governing board of an institution of higher education many enact an ordinance, resolution, rule, or other regulation that prohibits a permittee from carrying a concealed handgun in a building or specific area within the local government’s or governing board’s jurisdiction.”

This language allows for any of those 64 counties, 271 towns and cities, 2,800 special districts, or 64 colleges to ban concealed carry whenever and wherever they’d like within their jurisdiction. Does this mean just parks and government buildings? Or downtown areas?  Or can they choose to ban concealed carry within their entire city or county limits? From the way the bill is currently worded, they’d be able to ban it at city or county limits.  And have no doubt, many cities would love to enact a conceal carry ban and strip their citizens of the right to self defense.

So, quick recap: After a madman murdered 10 people in a grocery store, in a state where violent crime is skyrocketing, the solution lawmakers have come up with to prevent tragedies like this from happening again is to strip responsible gun owners, and those worried for their own self protection, of their right to self defense in their own towns, counties, and even on college campuses where 1 in 5 women are sexually assaulted.

Many may think this bill is a knee-jerk reaction, but have no doubt, it is an intentional swipe at the firearm preemption law that has been in place since 2003. Ten days before the Boulder King Soopers shooting, a Boulder County District Judge overturned a City of Boulder ordinance banning so-called “assault weapons” along with magazines over 10 rounds. Virtue signaling gun grabbers like to use this example as to why the preemption law needs repealed. What they fail to mention is Boulder’s own set of gun laws would have done nothing to stop the shooter.  He didn’t live in Boulder.  He didn’t purchase his firearm in Boulder.  The heinous acts he committed are already highly illegal and would have carried a maximum sentence of the death penalty had Colorado not repealed it in 2020.  The only other crime committed by the Boulder shooter that would have been covered under Boulder’s own specific town laws is the open carrying of a long gun outside of the vehicle in the King Soopers parking lot – before he began his massacre. That part of the Boulder ordinance was NOT overturned by the judge, yet the Boulder DA has not added it to his list of charges.  The Boulder DA also has not added the crime of lying on ATF Form 4473 which the shooter did when he answered yes to question 21(c): if he’d ever been convicted of a crime that carried a maximum penalty of 12 months or more in prison even if he received a lesser sentence including probation. In 2017 he was convicted of Third Degree Assault which is a Misdemeanor 1 carrying a maximum sentence of 18 months in prison. Lying on ATF Form 4473 is a felony punishable by up to 5 years in prison.

This bill passed the Senate State, Veterans and Military Affairs committee on Tuesday, May 11th.  It has not yet been scheduled for Second Reading in the Senate.

Please email your State Senators and ask they vote NO on this atrocious bill! 

Not sure who your State Senator is? Look them up HERE.
If you know who your State Senator is but need contact info, find all their info on our Elected Officials page HERE.

Follow all Colorado gun related legislation at our Legislative Watch page HERE.

 

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CALL TO ACTION: Oppose Gun Control In Colorado

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THREE gun control bills have been newly introduced by gun control extremists at the Colorado State Capitol. They have all advanced and are only days away from becoming law unless YOU speak up!

Please contact your State House Reps and State Senators and ask they vote NO on these bills. 

CLICK HERE to read our complete breakdown of each of these bills.

HB21-1298 Expand Firearm Background Check Requirements

• Adds 11 misdemeanors to the list of background check disqualifiers.

• Removes the option for FFLs to transfer a firearm to new owner if background check is formally delayed for more than 3 days.

• Extends the time agencies have to review a background check denial from 30 days to 60 days, and allows for indefinite denial without disposition in certain instances.

CLICK HERE to find your State Senator and ask they vote NO on HB21-1298.

Want to take it step further?
CLICK HERE TO EMAIL EVERY STATE SENATOR IN COLORADO

 


HB21-1299 Office Of Gun Violence Prevention

• Creates a new entity within Colorado Department of Public Health and Environment (CDHPE) called the Office of Gun Violence Prevention.

• This office will be asked to “…increase the awareness of, and educate the general public about, state and federal laws and existing resources relating to gun-violence prevention.” That includes how to safely store guns, how to report a lost or stolen weapon, how to access mental health care and how to utilize Colorado’s Red Flag Law. They will also be tasked with so-called “evidence based” data collection.

The office will also track and publish what local firearm laws are in place across the state, as they assume SB21-256 will pass (read below about this atrocious bill). They are requesting $3 million dollars for fiscal year 2021-2022.

CLICK HERE to find your State Senator and ask they vote NO on HB21-1299.

Want to take it step further?
CLICK HERE TO EMAIL EVERY STATE SENATOR IN COLORADO

 

SB21-256 Local Regulation Of Firearms

• Repeals Colorado’s 2003 Firearm Preemption Law and replaces it with language that allows localities and municipalities to create their own firearm laws as long as they are not LESS restrictive than state law.

• This bill would allow for any county or municipality to ban the possession, sale, or transfer of a firearm or firearm accessory within their jurisdiction; and would allow any county, municipality, special district, or college campus to ban concealed carry.

CLICK HERE to find your State House Rep and ask they vote NO on HB21-1299. 

Want to take it a step further? 
CLICK HERE TO EMAIL STATE HOUSE LAWMAKER GROUP #1
CLICK HERE TO EMAIL STATE HOUSE LAWMAKER GROUP #2
CLICK HERE TO EMAIL STATE HOUSE LAWMAKER GROUP #3

 

 


 

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CO Gun Bills Expose Glaring Assault On Victims Rights After Floor Debate Amendments Fail

CO Gun Bills Expose Glaring Assault On Victims Rights After Floor Debate Amendments Fail

 

This past week, two Colorado gun control bills have been rapidly making their way through the state legislature. While HB21-1106: Mandatory Safe Storage of Firearms originated in the house, SB21-078: Mandatory Reporting of Lost and Stolen Guns was introduced in the senate, both on Feb 16, 2021. This was undoubtedly a strategic move to keep gun rights activists chasing the zig zag between the two chambers. It culminated Tuesday morning when Lost and Stolen Guns was being heard in the senate, while Safe Storage was on third reading in the house. Both passed their respective hearings. Safe Storage will move on to the State Senate where the process will begin again and it must pass before landing on the governor’s desk, and Lost and Stolen guns will be heard for it’s final vote in the senate Wednesday morning before moving on to the State House of Representatives.

Confused yet?  Yeah…that was intentional on their part. Long story short, both bills continue to move forward – and fast.

Debate on Mandatory Safe Storage on the house floor went for nearly 10 hours with 27 amendments being offered by Republicans, all but one amendment was voted down. You can watch the debate here and part 2 here. Debate on Mandatory Reporting of Lost and Stolen Guns went relatively fast, lasting about an hour, with three amendments being offered, all rejected. You can watch that one here.

One thing became glaringly obvious while watching debate on these bills coupled with the rejection of amendment after amendment: gun owners lives do not matter to the gun grabbing Democrats down at the state capitol. The vote was along party lines with one Democrat joining Republicans in their efforts.

The Assault On Victim’s Rights

During both the debate on Safe Storage as well as Lost and Stolen Guns, amendments were put forth to protect victims of crime.

The following amendments were struck down by Democrats:

Amendment L-054 would have made it impossible for a person to be charged with the qualifying Class 2 Misdemeanor if the discovery of an unlocked firearm happened during a lawful entrance into a person’s home, such as during the commission of a crime against the person. For example: a woman is the victim of domestic violence in her own home, and police arrive at the scene. Upon entering the home they find a handgun on the kitchen table which had been used in her assault. There is a one year old toddler in the home. This domestic violence victim is now a criminal for not keeping the firearm locked up even if not at her own hands. This amendment was rejected along party lines.

Another amendment would have exempted persons from Safe Storage requirements who have active restraining orders against another person because they are in imminent danger.  Struck down by Democrats. If you are in such imminent danger even the courts agree, too bad, keep that gun locked up and inaccessible, call the police, that’s their solution.

And yet another amendment would have exempted gun owners in the event a juvenile trespasses onto their property and steals a firearm. Doesn’t matter. If you live alone with your cat and never have another person in your home, YOU will be held responsible for the crime another person commits in breaking into your home and stealing your property, and be slapped with a Class 2 Misdemeanor for not locking up your guns.

During the Lost and Stolen Guns debate three amendments were presented.  These amendments stated that if the firearm was stolen during an incident in which the person or a member of the persons immediate family was a victim of homicide (amendment 1), or a victim of kidnapping (amendment 2), or a victim of sexual assault (amendment 3) they would be exempt from the 5 day day reporting requirement. This is because rational people understand that when such trauma happens, reporting a gun lost or stolen is unlikely at the top of their priority list and during times of grief and/or processing the trauma, this can easily be overlooked or even create more trauma for the victim. All three of these amendments failed.

Yet another amendment offered and rejected would have given a gun owner or their family an avenue to sue the state if one is injured or killed while being unable to protect themselves due to the requirement to keep their guns “safely stored” where they are much more inaccessible should the need for self defense arise.  Funny the same party who preaches putting an end to qualified immunity would reject such a measure.

Last but not least, three amendments were presented that would have provided 7 days (amendment 1), then 3 days (amendment 2), and finally 24 hours (amendment 3) to come into compliance if found to be in violation of this new law that has no funding for the educational campaign. Those not paying attention are expected to “just know”.

They Also Reject Gun Owners Being Involved In Educational Campaign Development

An amendment was voted down that would have required the development of the Safe Storage educational campaign to include consultation with the Division of Criminal Justice and Public Safety, non-profit organizations that provide firearms safety education and training, members of the firearm industry, including manufacturers, dealers and importers, along with other experts in firearm safety. Because to them, it makes no sense to have stakeholders at the table who will actually be affected by this law and understand how to connect with gun owners.

Another amendment would have added a requirement that all 7th graders complete a firearms safety course, something that would help immensely with accidental shootings.

Exempting law enforcement officers, veterans, active duty military, and similar from Safe Storage was another amendment killed.

This was followed by an amendment that would have given some teeth to the Second Amendment Sanctuary counties who tend to be immune to many of the firearm crime issues that plague more urban areas such as school shootings and gun theft.

One Amendment Did Pass

The one amendment that DID pass will require information about organizations such as Hold My Guns and other community programs that allow firearm owners to voluntarily and temporarily store firearms at a secure location outside of the home in times of crisis be part of the unfunded educational campaign.

You can follow these bills and others, find legislator contact info, and even sign up to provide public comment at our Legislative Watch page.

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The Problem With “Mandatory Reporting Of Lost & Stolen Guns” Laws

The Problem With "Mandatory Reporting Of Lost & Stolen Guns" Laws : Rally for our Rights Colorado

As gun control extremists rally activists and politicians alike to push their agenda, it’s always clear which bills are part of a larger gun control agenda because they pop up in every state. Mandatory Reporting of Lost and Stolen Firearms is one of them, which has been introduced here in Colorado this legislative session.

SB21-078 sounds so benign it gets little opposition and even gun owners regularly say they don’t see an issue with it. I’ve never met a gun owner who took issue with reporting stolen guns to the police, and honestly, they really don’t “lose” them at all (boating accidents aside, of course).

But in reality, there are some glaring problems with such a law.

This particular bill makes it a petty offense with a fine of $25 if you don’t report a stolen or lost firearm to police within 5 days and any subsequent non-reporting offenses are a class 2 misdemeanor. The person reporting the theft or loss must provide the following info: the manufacturer, model, serial number, caliber, and any other identification number of distinguishing marks. From there, within 5 days, law enforcement must add the firearm information into CBI (Colorado Bureau of Investigations) and NCIC (National Crime Information Center – FBI) as directed. Even this wreaks eerily of a back door registry.

Here’s the thing, legal gun owners already report firearm theft voluntarily, even providing all the identifying information if they have it. And law enforcement typically gets the firearm information to the CBI who then adds it to NCIC within 24-48 hours, not even the 5 days the bill requires, but less. The issue doesn’t lie in the reporting, the issue lies in the recovery of the firearms. Law enforcement rarely tries to actively recover firearms, instead they wait to find them in the commission of another crime. Why not tackle this instead?  It would likely be supported by gun owners who want their firearms back (and definitely do not want them used to cause harm) and gun control advocates who claim to want to reduce “gun violence” alike, and would do far more to stop crimes committed with firearms and truly make our streets safer.

You know who won’t report their guns lost or stolen? People who are already prohibited from owning them, the same people who don’t report them now. This law won’t change that. It will honestly change little, if anything at all, when it comes to reporting.

What I actually find most concerning about this bill is the coupling of it with Mandatory Safe Storage of Firearms, which was introduced the same day and is already making it’s way quickly through the state house. When you report a gun stolen, will the next question be why you didn’t have it locked up? The penalty for not reporting the firearm stolen is a petty offense of $25. Not properly storing a firearm securely is a class 2 misdemeanor. In reporting a gun stolen, will gun owners be incriminating themselves of another crime? And would this actually deter gun owners from reporting their guns stolen? In this scenario with both bills becoming law, does the Lost and Stolen Firearms bill actually violate the Fifth Amendment, the right to remain silent? The Fifth Amendment of the Constitution protects a person from being compelled to incriminate oneself and is a bedrock of our justice system.

Lastly, let’s do a little study of our own by looking at two states in 2020, New York and California, which have very strict “common-sense” gun laws to include Mandatory Loss and Theft Reporting. In New York City, shootings are up 97%, homicide up 44%. In California, in Los Angeles, Sacramento, Fresno, Oakland, historic levels of gang shootings and gun homicides. So why aren’t these “common-sense” gun laws working?

All that aside, this bill threatens to criminalize victims and the state has no authority over the private property we own.

Follow our Legislative Watch page for more information about this and other firearm related bills, including when and how to provide public comment, who to contact, and when and where to watch the debate and votes.

 

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Colorado Mandatory Firearm Storage Bill Advances

Colorado Legislature Introduces Mandatory Safe Gun Storage Bill

Safe Storage of Firearms (HB21-1106) sponsored by Representatives Monica Duran and Kevin Mullica along with State Senators Jeff Bridges and Chris Hansen, was signed by Governor Polis on April 19, 2021.

During committee hearings and floor debate, a few things became clear about this bill:

• Applies to homes with kids or prohibited persons. It was a little unclear if it would extend to if you had children or prohibited persons in your home but they don’t live there.
• The bill sponsors were unsure about if it included vehicles, so they had to get the bill drafter to ask him. He wasn’t even totally sure but didn’t think it did.

Here’s how they intend to enforce it:

• Via discovery of unlocked firearms through other police contact, such as if the police are in your home for other reasons…welfare check, ERPO’s, another crime committed.
• See Something, Say Something™ reporters, such as family or friends in the home who are aware there are unlocked firearms. They will be encouraged to turn you in.
• After an incident has already taken place.
• And we truly believe from the Mandatory Reporting of Lost and Stolen Guns via the accompanying bill.

Our take on this bill…

Privilege: This bill will disproportionately affect the poorest in society, essentially limiting the ability and right to self defense to those who can afford it or face being a criminal. A better option would be a bill that makes gun safes tax free. Or maybe “Daddy Bloomberg” could use his money buying gun safes for those those who can’t afford them. Or safes for all of us to keep in our cars to put our gun in when we go into his beloved gun free zones.

Constitutionality:

There are obviously some serious questions about what this law will look like and how bill sponsors plan to get around constitutionality.

Attorney Joseph Greenlee of Steamboat Springs has already written about this issue.  In a January 8, 2020 article for Complete Colorado he states:

“Safe storage” laws are unconstitutional because they prohibit immediate self-defense in the home. In 2008, the Supreme Court struck down a law requiring that firearms be kept inoperable in the home, because it “makes it impossible for citizens to use them for the core lawful purpose of self-defense and is hence unconstitutional.” A “safe storage” law is another “prohibition against rendering any lawful firearm in the home operable for the purpose of immediate self-defense,” and is unconstitutional for the same reason.

Moreover, the Supreme Court has placed strict limitations on the government’s ability to regulate private conduct within the home. For example, the sanctity of the home prevents government from criminalizing the in-home possession of obscene materials (Stanley v. Georgia), homosexual conduct within the home (Lawrence v. Texas), and the use of contraception (Griswold v. Connecticut).

Indeed, the Supreme Court has acknowledged that the Constitution provides “protection against all governmental invasions of the sanctity of a man’s home and the privacies of life.” How Americans decide to store their arms inside their homes is therefore layers of constitutional protection beyond the reach of government.

Suicide:

A glaring hypocritical statement often made by the gun grabbers is in relation to suicide. According to the CDC, there were 725 firearm suicides nationwide in 2018 for children aged 17 and under, while for that same age group there were 923 suicides by hanging/suffocation.  Colorado’s teen suicide rate has increased by 58% in 3 years and not because of firearms.  In 2018 for ages 0-19 there were 95 total suicides in Colorado, 48 of those were by hanging and 47 were by all other means which include intentional overdose, firearm, and others.  Simply restricting access to firearms does nothing to address the suicide rate and will only push these teens toward other methods.  Until we get to the root cause of suicide, it will not stop.

That said, Colorado’s suicide rates matter and we should all care.  There are private organizations who already work with gun owners in crisis or who worry someone in their home may be in crisis.  Hold My Guns is a private group who is working to partner with FFL’s and police departments to offer a place people can store firearms during a crisis.  There are also multiple suicide prevention hotlines. And recently CU Anschutz unveiled an interactive map that shows out-of-home gun storage facilities for this exact reason.  WTTA.org also offers non-crisis support to gun owners.

And then there are the crisis lines:

National Suicide Prevention Lifeline: Call 1-800-273-8255, or chat online
Veterans Crisis Line:  Call 1-800-273-8255 and press 1, text 838255, or chat online

Accidental Deaths:

Accidents are the result of negligence. Since 1993, gun-accident fatalities have fallen 74 percent. You’ll be hard pressed to find a metric the CDC is tracking that shows such a remarkable trend in the positive direction. For example, you’re fifteen times more likely to be killed as a pedestrian than you will because of a gun accident (2017: 7450 pedestrian vs 486 gun accident). And to make this fact even more remarkable, this reduction in gun accidents happened solely from within the gun community without any intervention from the CDC, the medical establishment, or law enforcement.

Gun owners—and by this I mean law-abiding gun owners since a non-law-abiding gun owner is by definition a criminal—have on their own recognized the need for enhanced gun safety, that alcohol and guns don’t mix, and the need for safe storage to prevent handling by children and to prevent theft. Years ago, safe storage was hiding your guns in the bedroom closet; today gun owners brag about their gun safes.

Don’t take my word for it as the John Hopkins School for Gun Policy and Research says that: “…gun owners who purchase a firearm legally, generally are even more law-abiding than your average person.”

There are also statutes within Colorado Child Abuse law that mandates consequences for parents whose children accidentally cause harm to themselves or others via firearms.

Enforcement:

It’s unclear how they intend to enforce this law, and right here in Colorado we’ve already seen that storage doesn’t stop criminals.  The perpetrators in the 2018 STEM School shooting busted into a gun safe using a crow bar and an ax.  They then took the guns to the school where they were stopped by an armed security guard after killing one student.

An accompanying piece of legislation was also signed by the governor: Mandatory Reporting of Lost and Stolen Guns. We can already see how they intend to use these laws together.  If you leave your gun in your car while you go into a gun free area such as your child’s school, and it’s stolen, as soon as you report it you will be asked why it wasn’t being “safely stored”, and criminal charges will ensue.  This will only mean less people will report their guns stolen out of fear they will punished.  Punitive laws don’t work.

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Littleton, CO Aims To Eliminate Gun Stores With Impossible New “Safe Storage” Requirements

Littleton, CO Aims To Eliminate Gun Stores With Impossible New "Safe Storage" Requirements

While our country grapples with continued chaos from the election, COVID-19, a disrupted economy, and ongoing political violence, the mayor and city council of Littleton, CO has decided what is most important to them is pushing gun stores out of their city. During their February 2, 2021 city council meeting, a “Firearms Retailer Regulations” ordinance was passed by a unanimous vote.

Here’s the TL,DR version:

Beginning August 1, 2021 this ordinance (3-24-1 through 3-24-11 of Littleton city code) creates a new city license that is specific to firearm retailers only. To obtain this new annual license, business owners will be required to lock all firearms in safes during non-business hours, and create new security and storage plans for during business hours. The retailer must develop a safe storage plan that includes how they plan to achieve this, along with a number of other requirements not related to storage, such as alarm systems, disaster planning, training of employees, current floor plans, and inventory (much of what they already do as responsible businesses). This plan must be submitted to and approved by the Littleton Police Department annually. LPD can reject plans and revoke licenses at their discretion when they believe they find inadequacies in the plan. Retailers with revoked or expired licenses must dispose of their inventory according to ATF standards. Firearms disposition records must be available to law enforcement at all times without a subpoena, and law enforcement and other government officials must have access to all areas of the retail location at all times without a warrant. This ordinance makes operating a firearm retail business without this license an “unlawful act” punishable by fines and jail.

So what does this really do?

It creates such expensive and burdensome requirements on the retailers they will be forced to either increase the price of their inventory to such a degree only the wealthy can afford it and making self defense out of reach for lower income people, such as, I don’t know…many single mothers whose most important responsibility is the protection of her children alone. Or the retailers will be forced to move out of the city opening the door to the black markets that always fill these voids.

An important question would be does it even work? The idea that locking guns in safes prevents planned, professional theft is ridiculous. The city elected officials have now created a blueprint for thieves as to how to steal guns in Littleton, they just know they need to take the whole safe now and break into them, as the 16 year old STEM school shooter did before committing his heinous act.

And why target the gun industry solely if this is about saving lives? Let’s look at a pharmacy. They have objects in their possession that can fatally injure or hurt large amounts of people, such a fentanyl which is stealing the lives of teenagers right here in Colorado as I write this. They are highly regulated. And they are often the victim of crime, probably on similar statistics in comparison to gun store robberies, if not more.  However, because it isn’t controversial, a left vs right issue, it gets a free pass.

Colorado increasingly continues to see gun control passed at the local city level, as we highlighted back in 2018 when Boulder passed a ban on so-called “assault weapons” and in 2019 Longmont passed a “common sense gun safety” resolution that looked like Bloomberg himself wrote it. Please keep your eye on your city council agendas and if you see anything fishy, alert us immediately.

Please reach out to the Littleton mayor and city council contact with your thoughts. Scroll down for their contact info.

Here are the dirty details about the Littleton ordinance: 

Creates a new annual city license all firearm retailers will now be required to apply for (and I’m sure pay for, although a dollar amount is not included in the bill language).

In order to get this license the retailer will need to:

• Develop a plan that addresses the safe storage of firearms during retail hours, after closing, and any off-site storage areas where firearm inventory is maintained.  This must include all of the following:

– Securely storing firearms during retail hours, after closing, and in any off-site storage areas in accordance with their new storage requirements set forth in the new Littleton City Code. During non-business hours all firearms must be stored in a locked safe, locked steel gun cabinet, or secured safe room;
– Alarm systems and theft deterrence systems;
– Business practices addressing access to firearms during retail hours;
– Procedures for removing/replacing firearms to show to customers;
– Loss or theft reporting;
– Description of anti-theft measures and practices;
– Disaster plan;
– Structural Security; e.g. physical hardening of the premises which includes but not but not limited to bollards, break resistance windowing, secured bars across windows, locking metal reinforced doors, and reinforced walls;
– Inventory Security;
– Employee Screening; and,
– Employee training and education about licensee’s policy and procedures and loss prevention measures, if applicable.

• Safe Storage Plans must be submitted to the Littleton Police Department for approval on an annual basis. LPD can reject any submitted plans, documenting inadequacies, and if those inadequacies are not addressed and a new plan submitted for approval within 60 days, or if the same plan is submitted, the license will be revoked.

• Retail location must ensure the following practices are implemented within their plans:

– Store all firearms in inventory in a safe, vault, or safe room and in such a manner as to prevent theft or loss.
– Keep all safes, vaults, displays, other equipment, or areas used for the storage of firearms in inventory securely locked or protected from entry, except for the actual time required to remove, replace or show for sale or transfer the firearm(s) in inventory. Trigger locks or similar devices cannot be removed until sale or transfer is completed.
– Keep all locks and security equipment in good working order;
– Prohibit keys from being left in locks and do not store or place keys in a location accessible to persons other than specifically authorized personnel;
– Prohibit other security measures, such as combination numbers, keys, codes, passwords or electronic or biometric security systems, from being accessible to persons other than specifically authorized personnel;
– Keep the retail location securely locked and protected from unauthorized entry at all times when closed for business or unoccupied by authorized personnel;
– Ensure inventory records are protected by securing the records after business hours in a location separate from the firearms inventory and only permit authorized personnel or law enforcement to view or handle the inventory records;
– Complete a firearms inventory on a regular basis, no less than once annually. Inventories must be conducted by at least two persons, unless owner operated.
– Keep timely and accurate “acquisition and disposition” records. These records must be made available to law enforcement entities upon request;
– Maintain a disaster plan that adequately ensures the timely securing of firearms in inventory in the event of a natural or man-made disaster. The plan must be made available to law enforcement upon request; and,
– Ensure employees with access to firearms in inventory or who otherwise handle firearms in inventory are not prohibited from possessing firearms under State or Federal law.

• If a retail location presents special security issues, such as exposed handling or unusual vulnerability to diversion, theft or loss, LPD may require additional safeguards.

• If a loss, theft or diversion of firearms in inventory has occurred from a retail location, the certified licensee must notify the ATF and law enforcement within 24 hours after the loss or theft is discovered. If any firearms previously reported as lost or stolen are subsequently recovered by the licensee, the licensee must notify the ATF and law enforcement of the recovery.

• Any licensee whose certification is revoked or not renewed must dispose of its entire inventory under conditions approved by the ATF and provide notice to LPD of plan to transfer or otherwise dispose of inventory.

• Retail locations operating in a space that is 5,000 square feet or greater, or maintaining more than 100 firearms in inventory, must provide current copies of floor plans to LPD upon request.

• Retailers must not prohibit members of LPD or other federal, state or local government officials from entering any area of a location if necessary to perform their governmental duties.

Littleton Police Department has put together a long and complicated document to “help” firearm retailers get their plan in place.  You can read that here.

If you’d like to express your thoughts and concerns about this heavy handed move by the Littleton mayor and city council while they know people are distracted by many other things, please contact them:

Mayor Jerry Valdes: 303-810-1465  [email protected]
Councilmember Patrick Driscoll: 303-668-7877  [email protected]
Councilmember Karina Elrod: 303-362-3364  [email protected]
Councilmember Carol Fey: 303-795-9350  [email protected]
Councilmember Pam Grove: 303-263-1152  [email protected]
Councilmember Scott Melin: 720-295-5382  [email protected]
Councilmember Kelly Milliman: 720-468-1324  [email protected]

Don’t have time to contact them individually? Here’s a quick copy/paste you can throw into your email client and message them all at once: [email protected], [email protected], [email protected], [email protected], [email protected], [email protected], [email protected]

 

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HR127: It’s Your Money or Your Guns

HR127: It’s Your Money or Your Guns

HR 127 has been called “The Gun Apocalypse” and for good reason. Introduced by Congresswoman Sheila Jackson D-TX, this bill is formally known as the Sabika Sheikh Firearm Licensing and Registration Act. What HR127 ultimately does is wipe out the Second Amendment by making gun ownership unaffordable for all but the most affluent. Which is clearly the intent.

It’s ironic that the Democrats who preach criminal justice reform aren’t hesitating, with the stroke of a pen, to turn millions of law-abiding Americans into felons, punishing them with onerous fines and years of incarceration. Despite this, nothing in HR127 will disarm one violent criminal or reduce the gun homicide rampaging through our cities.

There is much about this bill that makes it unworkable and impractical but for the moment, I’ll focus the discussion on what it will cost your wallet.

Pony up, Mr. Gun Owner

This bill requires that every applicant for a gun license must first pay $800 to the US Attorney General for liability insurance. Never mind that as a gun owner, if you have homeowner’s or renter’s insurance, you already have gun accident insurance under the plan’s liability umbrella coverage. This requirement begs many questions such as, what experience does the AG have in managing insurance? How will claims be processed? Does this insurance protect a gun owner against law suits? Does this insurance cover legal expenses? There remain more questions and I’ll turn back to those later.

You’ll also be required to take 24 hours of training to include live firing training. Maybe you can find such training at $50 per hour so you’re talking $1200, minimum.

You want a gun? You must be crazy!

HR127 requires that every gun owner and member of the household undergo an evaluation by a licensed psychologist. Plus, this psychologist must interview any former spouses as well as at least two other family members or associates. Since the standards for these required evaluations are as yet not available, it’s difficult to determine how much they will cost but a reasonable estimate is $1000 each. Assuming three in your household, that’s at least $3000. Add another $1000 for the interviews—another estimate—and we’re talking $4000.

Also consider that HR127 mentions that these licensed psychologists must be approved by the AG. An Internet search shows about 100K licensed psychologists in the country and not every of them will be approved. Consider the evaluations required of gun owners and members of their households plus interviews with the ex’s and associates, that means less than 100K psychologists will be conducting hundreds of millions of evaluations and interviews. By what deadline? Those psychologists already have full schedules so we’re expecting them to take on such an avalanche of new clients on top of that? This situation will create a seller’s market of insane proportions. With that in mind, who knows what you’ll pay for a shrink’s time.

Speaking of pay…who will pay for these evaluations and interviews?

Not the AG, but you.

The psychological evaluation is offered with the premise it will be an accurate predictor of who should or shouldn’t have a gun. But in truth, those giving such evals, highly trained psychologists and psychiatrists, have a miserable record at protecting public safety. The shooters at Thousand Oaks, the Aurora Theater, and the Parkland high school had all been extensively evaluated for exhibiting dangerous behavior prior to the shootings, and yet nothing was done to prevent the ensuing massacres. And sadly, the increasing rate of suicides in this country shows that mental health professionals don’t have a firm grasp at preventing fatal self-harm.

If there is a hint that the AG’s licensed psychologists may bear any liability for a misdiagnosis, then expect the Catch 22 of HR127 to kick in:

We must keep the mentally disturbed from getting a gun

….and only the mentally disturbed would want a gun.

HR127: By the Number$$

How much will HR127 cost you, the law-abiding gun owner, to keep your property? Factor in fees (also unspecified) for the registration of each gun (don’t forget ammo), the permit application, and the permit itself so a lowball estimate for the first gun is:

Insurance: $800
Training: $1200
Psyche eval: $4000
Fees: ???

Total: $6000+

The AG’s Money Grab

Let’s return to the insurance. Assuming 75 million gun owners in this country, let’s say 25 million won’t pay this extortion and thus give up their guns. That means 50 million will jump through the financial hoops. The simple math of 50 million gun owners times $800 each means $40 billion of your money will slosh into the coffers of the AG. That’s a lot of cash. Substantially more than the entire 2020 budget for the US Department of Justice ($29.9B). What happens to all that money? Does it remain in an insurance portfolio…managed by whom? Or does that money get lost in a slush fund?

Currently, every state in the union is experiencing an alarming surge in gun homicide, mostly because of gang and drug-related shootings aggravated by the pandemic lockdowns. Is anyone naive enough to think that any criminal will subject themselves to the provisions of this bill considering they’re not supposed to have guns to begin with? Tragically, HR127 will do nothing to protect anyone from violent crime or make our streets any safer.

Contact your congressperson today and let them know you oppose this bill!  Click here to find their contact information.

 

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Colorado Gun Owners: Brace For Gun Control Fight In 2021

Colorado Gun Owners: Brace For Gun Control Fight In 2021

After a 2020 that felt more like the Twilight Zone than reality, there’s one good thing that happened: 2020 gun control legislation was DOA both in-state and federally.  But that’s all about to change.

Last year Colorado Democrats had only introduced two gun control bills when the legislature took an emergency recess due to COVID-19. When they returned months later to finish up what they considered “necessary business”, many legislative ambitions were no longer considered “necessary”.  This included a bill mandating locking up firearms and another bill making the reporting of lost and stolen guns mandatory. Although Democrats held the majority in both the State House and Senate, the margin in the senate was slim and they knew the passage wasn’t a slam dunk. After the November 3rd election, Democrats in the state picked up one additional state senate seat and the majority in the state house remained unchanged.

At the federal level in 2020, Republicans held a slight majority in the Senate while Democrats held a large majority in the House of Representatives.  Multiple pieces of gun control legislation passed out of the house only to never see the light of day in the senate, ultimately never making it to then President Donald Trump’s desk.  The November 3rd elections, and most notably the recent January 5th senate run-off in Georgia, changed the entire make up of congress, and the recent inauguration of Joe Biden as president and Kamala Harris as vice president sealed the deal. The senate now sits with 50 Democrats and 50 Republicans, making the tie breaker the new VP, Kamala Harris. In the house Republicans did pick up a number of seats but not enough to make up the large margin. Currently the party make-up in that chamber is 211 Republicans to 221 Democrats with three vacancies yet to be filled.

So what should we expect?

Colorado:

Colorado’s legislative session was set to begin on January 13, 2021 and run for exactly 120 days.  Due to COVID-19, Democrat leadership altered this timeline. On January 13th, legislators were sworn in and routine business was done; for two more days a few bills were passed that related directly to COVID-19 and then they recessed until February 16, 2021. At that time they intend to run for the remainder of the 120 days or possibly less. We are already aware of three pieces of gun control legislation to be introduced as soon as they reconvene:

• Mandatory waiting period between firearm purchase and possession – possibly 5 days. (Rep. Tom Sullivan and Rep. Steven Woodward)
• Mandatory “safe storage” of firearms. (Rep. Kevin Mullica)
• Mandatory reporting to law enforcement of lost and stolen guns. (Rep. Tom Sullivan and Sen. Sonya Jaquez Lewis)

It’s not unlikely we’ll see more gun control out of Colorado gun grabbers this session – the question remains what and when.

I’ve written about the last two proposals and you can read that here. I’ll be breaking down the mandatory waiting period in the coming days so keep your eye out for that.

A list of contact information of all of Colorado’s legislators can be found here.

Federal:

The 117th U.S. Congress gaveled into session earlier this month, and at least six gun control measures have been filed already with the House Judiciary Committee. Unlike the past couple years, these bills could land on the new president’s desk for signature if strategic pushback from gun owners doesn’t stop them.

Summaries of these bills are not yet available to the public at the time of this writing.

H.R.30 – To increase public safety by punishing and deterring firearms trafficking. (Rep. Bobby Rush, D-IL)

H.R.121 – To provide for the hiring of 200 additional Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives agents and investigators to enforce gun laws. (Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee D-TX-18)

H.R.125 – To amend Title 18, United States Code, to provide for a 7-day waiting period before a semiautomatic firearm, a silencer, armor piercing ammunition, or a large capacity ammunition magazine may be transferred. (Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee D-TX-18)

H.R.127 – To provide for the licensing of firearm and ammunition possession and the registration of firearms, and to prohibit the possession of certain ammunition. (Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee D-TX-18)

H.R.130 – To require the safe storage of firearms and ammunition, and to require the investigation of reports of improper storage of firearms or ammunition. (Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee D-TX-18)

H.R.167 – To prohibit the transfer of a firearm at a gun show by a person who is not a federally licensed firearms dealer. (Rep. Al Green D-TX-9)

Stay tuned for more information as the full text of these bills becomes available and as more bills are filed.

A list of Colorado’s federally elected representatives and senators can be found here.

And in the mean time, buckle up. It’s going to be a bumpy ride. 

 

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