Among Patrick’s proposals is legislation, “which would allow district attorneys to seek to hold defendants charged with possessing, using or trafficking illegal firearms without bail, pending trial,” MetroWest Daily News reported. “Other portions of the legislation would limit gun purchases to one gun a month to reduce trafficking; make it a felony punishable by a decade in prison to possess a gun while committing a misdemeanor that involves the use of force; and change the definition of “firearm” so prosecutors do not have to prove the gun is operable. In addition, anyone wanting to sell a gun would have to conduct the transaction at a licensed dealer so the sale is entered into the government’s electronic database of firearms.”
Jim Wallace, executive director of the state Gun Owners Action League, said that while his group certainly supported keeping guns out of hands of bad guys, the new laws would punish law-abiding citizens.
“Someone who’s just in possession without a license or the wrong license facing prison time without any other issues, is just ridiculous on its face,” Wallace said.
Some police officers also disagreed with limiting how many firearms someone could buy per month.
“There are some people who are collectors and there are people who are aficionados,” said Framingham Police spokesman Lt. Paul Shastany. “If people are law-abiding citizens and they can legally purchase the guns and they are properly secured according to the law, what’s the problem?”
Said Ashland Police Chief Scott Rohmer, “I know people who buy and sell guns and who enjoy the art of shooting. I don’t see the need of restricting those people.”
SOURCE: Mass. Gun proposals, MetroWest Daily News 5/9/09: