Two Colorado Sheriffs Won’t Enforce New Gun Laws

By:  Bob Adelmann
03/19/2013
       
Two Colorado Sheriffs Won’t Enforce New Gun Laws

Two county sheriffs in Colorado have vowed not to enforce the bills that Governor John Hickenlooper is about to sign into law, saying that they are unenforceable and merely "feel-good, knee-jerk" laws that won't reduce crime in the state. 

Two Colorado sheriffs, John Cooke of Weld County and Terry Maketa of El Paso County, have vowed not to enforce the new gun bills that were recently passed by the Colorado legislature and that are about to be signed into law by Colorado Governor John Hickenlooper. Said Cooke, “They’re just feel-good, knee-jerk reactions that are unenforceable,” and will have no impact on limiting crime or criminals. Such laws only “give a false sense of security” he added. “Criminals are still going to get their guns.”

One bill about to become law will require background checks on all transfers of firearms, including those between private citizens. The other limits magazine capacities to 15 rounds. Cooke said that under the new law, all magazines that can carry more than 15 rounds, or can be modified to do so, will be banned. Because “all magazines can be altered to a higher capacity,” in effect the law bans all magazines and tracking down all owners of magazines in his county would be impossible.

El Paso County Sheriff Maketa concurs, saying that it would be impossible to separate which magazines would be legal — those sold before the July 1 enforcement date of the laws — from those sold afterwards. At a packed-house meeting in Colorado Springs Tuesday evening, Maketa said, “I can’t tell you when those were sold, bought and purchased. As far as I’m concerned, they are all pre-July 1.”

In response to a question from an audience member, Maketa said that his office keeps records of every concealed carry permit holder in the county as required by law, but he would never share it with the federal government. He added that “if anyone tried to get their hands on it I would destroy the database [and] would intervene if government agents started arresting county residents for exercising their constitutional rights.”

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