Sheriffs Refuse to Enforce Gun Control Laws

Melanie Batley Newsmax December 16, 2013

New gun control laws are unconstitutional, say scores of sheriffs throughout the country, and they are either refusing to enforce the statutes or have signaled that enforcement will be a very low priority, The New York Times reports.

In Colorado, a law passed by the Legislature that requires universal background checks and bans ammunition magazines that hold more than 15 rounds is being challenged in a lawsuit by all but seven of the state’s 62 elected sheriffs who say it’s a violation of Second Amendment rights.

New laws in other states which were brought about as a result of the Newtown, Conn. school shootings, are also facing resistance, the Times reported Sunday.

In New York, two sheriffs have said publicly they would not enforce new gun  laws, some of the toughest in the nation.  In California, a delegation of  sheriffs tried to convince Gov. Jerry Brown to veto gun bills that would ban  semiautomatic rifles with detachable magazines and lead ammunition for hunting,  according to the Times.

“All law enforcement agencies consider the  community standards — what is it that our community wishes us to focus on — and  I can tell you our community is not worried one whit about background checks or  high-capacity magazines,” Sheriff W. Pete Palmer of Chaffee County, Colo., told  the Times.

Nevertheless, in Colorado, officials argue the laws are  already having an effect.  They point to figures that show, of the 3,445  background checks on private gun sales since the law went into effect on July 1,  70 people were denied weapons.

“Particularly on background checks, the  numbers show the law is working,” Eric Brown, a spokesman for Colorado Gov. John  Hickenlooper, told the Times.

Police chiefs in the state, particularly in  urban areas, agree that the new laws are making an impact, saying most gun  stores have stopped selling high-capacity magazines for personal use, though  some continue to do so illegally.

Law enforcement officials, however,  acknowledge that sheriffs have wide discretion in enforcing state laws.  And  while sheriffs could be removed for refusing to enforce state statutes, one  expert suggests that many governors could be reluctant to use such powers.

“In my oath it says I’ll uphold the U.S. Constitution and the Constitution  of the State of Colorado,” Sheriff John Cooke of Weld County told the Times.   “It doesn’t say I have to uphold every law passed by the Legislature.”

Related stories:

Gun Advocate Pratt: Bloomberg’s Anti-Gun Effort  ‘Arrogant’

Sports Group’s Lawsuit Fails to Stop Conn. Gun Control Law

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RELATED: Back in May, the sheriffs announced their lawsuit against unconstitutional gun control laws: ALSO RELATED: Read the Sheriff’s complaint from May 2013.

I must have missed where the Governor can arbitrarily or otherwise remove the highest ELECTED Law Enforcement Official in a county.  And who is this socalled “expert” who doesn’t know what he’s talking about?! The Sheriffs DO NOT serve “at the pleasure of the Governor” but the Constitution which they swore to uphold – as did the governor for that matter which he’s now violating. This governor and others are targeting innocent citizens thus making them criminals and what’s more it’s none of their business!

Watch the video in full.

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