• RI lawmakers unveil gun-control package, including ban on semiautomatic assault weapons

    The bills, outlined in a 2:30 p.m. news conference at the State House, include:

    * Bans on high-capacity magazines and semiautomatic assault weapons after July 1. Exempted are antique firearms, inoperable weapons, rifles or shotguns unable to hold high-capacity magazines, and firearms manufactured before July 1, 1963. Current owners are grandfathered in, although they may sell such weapons only to buyers outside Rhode Island or to someone authorized to possess them.

    * Creation of a task force to guide the state in submitting records about mental health and substance abuse to the FBI's background check system. The task force must report back to the governor and General Assembly by Jan. 1, with legislation that will bring the state into compliance.

    * Creation of a relief board for those denied firearms based on mental-health or substance-abuse backgrounds. Setting up this board makes the state eligible for federal funds to help it comply with the FBI system.

    * Granting the attorney general's office the sole power to approve conceal-carry permits. Under current law, local police chiefs also have the authority, though less discretion.

    * Authorizing lengthy sentences to straw purchasers and anyone who gives a gun to a juvenile, who uses it a violent crime.

    * Increasing the penalty for not reporting lost or stolen firearms.

    * Barring anyone from carrying a rifle or shotgun, openly or concealed, anywhere in public, except for those who are hunting or target shooting.

    The attorney general's office has already introduced bills making it illegal to possess a firearm with an obliterated serial number and also barring juveniles from possessing a firearm, unless a parent, guardian or supervising adult is present.

    Comments 22 Comments
    1. In_God_We_Trust's Avatar
      In_God_We_Trust -
    1. Kaldone's Avatar
      Kaldone -
    1. napoleon1815's Avatar
      napoleon1815 -
      Come and get 'em.
    1. mattyw's Avatar
      mattyw -
    1. Durwood01's Avatar
      Durwood01 -
      And the Gov. approched Colt about moving to R.I.
    1. egouin's Avatar
      egouin -
      Man, this is getting way too close to home.
    1. Lank's Avatar
      Lank -
      Fight this to the end!

      Giving the attorney general that much power?
    1. Nectaris's Avatar
      Nectaris -
      How do they come up with the rationale for this crap? Seriously how many mass murders or any murder have been committed with a gun by people with substance abuse problems, open carrying or carrying concealed? A person with a substance abuse problem is more likely to commit robbery (not saying its right) for money and around here they use knives and dirty needles.
    1. Golddiggie's Avatar
      Golddiggie -
      Two disgusting points on that list:
      * Granting the attorney general's office the sole power to approve conceal-carry permits. Under current law, local police chiefs also have the authority, though less discretion.
      * Barring anyone from carrying a rifle or shotgun, openly or concealed, anywhere in public, except for those who are hunting or target shooting.

      What makes the AG's office any more qualified to issue permits? How many additional people will they hire to handle this? Or are they just looking to extend the time from application to issue/deny to the point where people just give up on getting permits?

      I also don't see the point of the second item. It's going to make it so that no historical reenactments can happen in RI. Nor any parades where rifles were carried in the past. Along with the variety of other cases where it would be otherwise ok to carry a long gun.

      RI, one step closer to joining CT and MA in FoR status.
    1. calsdad's Avatar
      calsdad -
      So what exactly is their definition of "assault weapon" - is it like the MA definition where they are just going by certain characteristics - but essentially you can still purchase an AR-15? Or are they just outright banning them altogether?
    1. RImike's Avatar
      RImike -
      Here are the bill number and description of the proposals. We need to coordinate on this to all work together to oppose repressive firearms laws!!!!

      To avoid duplication, I will list the Senate Bill and its House companion, If there are any major differences, I will list them separatly:

      -S.859/H.5990 - This one is the big one!!! It would ban all semi-auto firearms that have 2 or more "evil" features, it will eliminate the local police from issuing LTC permits and give the authority to the AG, it will BAN possession of any magazine larger than 10 rounds. This is a violation of our 5th Amendment (taking of property without compensation)!!!! I will be dissecting this bill in the upcoming days to expose its downright criminality of proposals

      -S.860/H.5991 - This bill will increase penalties for crimes using a firearm.

      -S.864/H.5994 - This bill essentially make you a criminal if one of your firearms are sold, and at a later date are used in a crime. You literally can't make this crap up.

      -No. 865/H.5993 - This bill gives the AG the sole authority to issue permits. Here is the kicker, all existing town issued permits will be null and void and you will have to get a state issued one, another example of this bill trampling on our 5th amendment rights. Furthermore it raises the cost to $140 and you have to pay for the FBI background check. I will be dissecting this bill in the upcoming days as well to fully offer my rebuttals.
    1. In_God_We_Trust's Avatar
      In_God_We_Trust -
      I was under the impression that there was grandfathering built into the ban? If not, this bill would be unconstitutional based on current law in RI, never mind the US Constitution (not that ANY restriction would be... But not having any grandfathering.. seems like they are expecting a fight).

      Article I, 22 of the Constitution of the State of Rhode Island and Providence Plantations provides that “[t]he right of the people to keep and bear arms shall not be infringed.” Article I, 24 states that “[t]he enumeration of the foregoing rights [of the Constitution] shall not be construed to impair or deny others retained by the people. The rights guaranteed by this Constitution are not dependent on those guaranteed by the Constitution of the United States.”
    1. Rob Boudrie's Avatar
      Rob Boudrie -
      But not having any grandfathering.. seems like they are expecting a fight
      Or, creating a scenario where adding grandfathering becomes a "great compromise" and "giving the gun owners something". It's a matter of framing the debate so they start with everything and get a portion of it, while giving absolutely nothing to the other side.

      Done effectively, this strategy will cause reps on our side to engage their efforts in adding grandfathering, rather than stopping this monstrosity.
    1. xris's Avatar
      xris -
      I'm still wrapping my head around, The AG will issue LTC but it is illegal to carry except for hunting or target shooting.
    1. newportri's Avatar
      newportri -
      Please sign the petiton against these bills.
    1. Chopper978's Avatar
      Chopper978 -
      Follow this link- I think it shows the Boston Marathon Bomber. (exactly which ones, or all, I don't know): 4chan ThinkTank - Imgur

      What would the 2 guys in the matching khakis/boots wear that to a Marathon. They're the terrorists (or they're feds/Mossad).

      As far as the Courthouse, it obviously was a fake bomb threat so they could sneak in whoever they "arrested". (I hope he likes waterboarding)....
    1. Mknez's Avatar
      Mknez -
      This is a copy of an email I sent to the RI senators concerning these new anti-gun bills:

      Dear Senators,

      I have reviewed the proposed gun legislation and do not see how I can support any of it. Rhode Island already has some of the nations toughest gun laws and if new laws could actually curb violence without directly infringing on our natural born rights I would be in support of it. These bills are egregious assaults on our rights and are in direct conflict with the second amendment and the Rhode Island constitution and additionally will do nothing to prevent or solve gun violence and irresponsible use of a firearm.

      Bill 859: The term "assault weapon" is a political and made up word. We already ban so called assault weapons. They are fully automatic rifles and have very little use even in combat situations. What you have done is defined an assault weapon as one that has 2 or more non lethal characteristics which makes absolutely no sense at all. This bill is a direct infringement on our rights and would make many commonly owned rifles and pistols illegal in this state affecting only law abiding citizens of course.

      Bill 425: This was previously a common sense bill but with the revisions all the common sense has been gutted with the only purpose to criminalize what was previously responsible use of firearms by minors. As with Bill 859, the only purpose seems to be further encroachment of our rights as gun owners and parents.

      Bill 865: Replaces "shall issue" permitting with "may issue" permitting by the attorney general. What exactly will be the criteria for issuing a "may" issue permit? What is the reason for this except to further limit and encroach on our rights? Also why is there an increase in the fee from $40. to $140? How does this make us more safe? If these additional requirements and restrictions are not infringements and breach of our state and federal constitutional rights then I don't know what the definition of the term infringement is. How many current permit holders have abused responsibilities that would now require further restrictions of this process? This seems to be only another way to drastically limit the amount of responsible CC permit holders.

      Please take my reservations into account concerning these bills. I am retired military and same as my father who served before me and my son who is currently serving I took an oath to uphold the constitution and defend it same as you but these proposed bills directly conflict with that oath. The second amendment of the U.S. Constitution is a natural born right, not a political right. It can not be revoked by the government since it was not granted by the government. Please don't be haste and push through legislation that will not solve the problem of gun violence, but will only infringe on our liberties and abilities to protect ourselves. I am also a member of the National Rifle association and I vote. And to conclude, a quote from Ayn Rand :

      "Individual rights are not subject to a public vote; a majority has no right to vote away the rights of a minority; the political function of rights is precisely to protect minorities from oppression by majorities (and the smallest minority on earth is the individual)."


      Matthew Knez

      Bradford, RI
    1. n1bsbri's Avatar
      n1bsbri -
      Quote Originally Posted by Mknez View Post
      This is a copy of an email I sent to the RI senators concerning these new anti-gun bills:
      Good letter! +1 to you sir.
    1. Michael J. Spangler's Avatar
      Michael J. Spangler -
      I don't know what to say. Every time I see something like this a little bit of me dies.
    1. dyer01905's Avatar
      dyer01905 -
      "Semiautomatic ASSAULT Weapon" Now that is an oxymoron if I've ever seen one. I have a feeling this will never stop.
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