UPDATE: Bill Would Forbid Idaho Police from Seizing Banned Guns

2013-02-25T12:12:00Z UPDATE: Bill Would Forbid Idaho Police from Seizing Banned GunsThe Associated Press The Associated Press
February 25, 2013 12:12 pm  • 

BOISE — Idaho law enforcement officers who help the federal government confiscate any newly banned firearms or ammunition could get jail time and a $1,000 fine, under a measure introduced by lawmakers on Monday.

The bill seeks to head off possible attempts by President Barack Obama and Congress to outlaw semi-automatic weapons, high-capacity magazines or ammunition following the massacre of Connecticut elementary school students.

Government employees in Idaho who help enforce new federal firearms restrictions or registration requirements would be guilty of a misdemeanor, according to the measure.

The Obama administration has said that it has no plans to confiscate weapons or require national firearms registration. Even so, Republican Rep. Mark Patterson of Boise is among a group of 22 co-sponsors who say this bill is necessary to ensure Idaho residents' "inalienable God-given rights to defend themselves'' are forever protected.

"This law would be violated if an Idaho law enforcement officer knowingly and willingly participated in an action with the purpose of confiscating firearms,'' Patterson told the committee. "The legislation also protects Idaho law enforcement officers from their supervisors ordering them to violate this statute. Supervisors doing so would be in violation of this law and officers would not have to follow such an order.''

Patterson said sheriffs or police could still help seize weapons used in the commission of a felony.

The Idaho Sheriff's Association, which represents all 44 sheriffs from each of the state's counties, wasn't consulted on Patterson's bill and has yet to scrutinize it.

In advance of that, however, Vaughn Killeen, executive director of the association, pointed out that his members and their agencies don't enforce federal laws.

"The feds have their own agents that do that sort of thing,'' Killeen said, adding he wants to take careful look at the proposal to make sure there's nothing in it that would interfere with existing cooperation between local law enforcement and federal agencies.

Those include the FBI and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives, in particular on drug cases where weapons are nearly always found.

"My concern is working relationships because we have so many situations where we work together,'' said Killeen, a former Ada County sheriff.

In January, Obama urged Congress to pass universal background checks and bans on military-style assault weapons. He also issued 23 executive orders on gun safety.

But White House spokesman Jay Carney said none of Obama's proposals "would take away a gun from a single law-abiding American'' and other administration officials have also underscored that their plans wouldn't result in gun seizures — or a national gun registry.

Still, in gun-loving, Washington, D.C.-leery Idaho, lawmakers including Patterson say they're taking nothing for granted.

At Monday's committee hearing, his bill was paired with another shot over the federal government's bow, a measure that seeks to strengthen a three-year-old state law — the "Idaho Firearms Freedom Act'' — that at the time it was passed sought to ban federal regulation of Idaho-made weapons that never leave the state.

If Congress moves to ban any firearm or accessory, according to the new measure, that firearm wouldn't be subject to federal regulation as long as it's never left Idaho's borders. In addition, the bill would forbid federal agents from trying to stop the manufacture of such weapons.

"In 2010, we passed the Firearms Freedom Act... to try to push back on federal government there if they encroach too far into 2nd Amendment rights,'' said Rep. Jason Monks, R-Meridian. "This is an attempt to strengthen that language.''

Copyright 2015 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

(7) Comments

  1. SSDD
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    SSDD - February 14, 2014 10:10 pm
    SKC_ID re:
    Your ignorant tin foil hats comment shows you for the mindless, rhetoric spreading, brainwashed liberal troll you really are.
    There is a clear agenda to remove arms from the citizens of this country, and those who are for it will stoop to any level to make it happen. They even resort to pissing untruths on the people of this country from atop the graves of children. Your a sap and you bought into the buzz, "assault weapon" is double speak and the term refers to (NOTHING) Only the police, the military, a handful of licensed citizens( class4) have actual "assault weapons" -fully automatic to you dummy.
    How a gun LOOKS means nothing, except to people who don't know sour beans from dry owl dropping like you.
    The illegal weapons held by criminals will still be in criminal hands after you are disarmed.
    Because the criminals don't care about law, and that includes those willing to violate the constitution. They are criminals as well, Holder is a criminal who intentionally sent guns to Mexico for drug dealers, and tried to spin it to assist in the gun ban agenda, got one of ours killed and it blew up in his face. Yet their he is smug with impunity protecting your lair and chief. Why don't you expend your energy making sure that criminal doesn't have guns. Because you sir are a hypocrite .
    Now I have to go find the rest of my tin foil suit so when the MIB show up to play me the sounds of silence from the microwave guns my nads don't get cooked.
  2. Hawk's view
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    Hawk's view - February 26, 2013 10:01 am
    If the government bans something, then it makes it illegal to possess. The Constitution says they can't do that with guns. NO infringement on the right of self defense is allowed.

    All federal agencies work with permission of the county sheriff. This law makes it illegal to give them that permission, if it involves the Second Amendment.

    The Second assures us that Americans are free to defend themselves. That makes selective law enforcement impossible.

    You have the right NOT to bear arms. Wait on your hired cop to write a report on what went wrong.

    All American guns are ANTI-assault weapons while many times doubling as sporting guns. Only crooks have 'assault' weapons.
  3. SKC_ID
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    SKC_ID - February 26, 2013 9:39 am
    Mark Patterson, his group of group of 22 co-sponsors, and this proposed law is ridiculous.
    Tin foil hats should be mandatory attire for Idaho's Republican Politicians. They keep saying the Federal Government wants to take away guns owned by citizens, totally ignoring the facts. Just another one of those cases where if you say it often enough, people will start to believe you.
  4. Justhetruth
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    Justhetruth - February 25, 2013 3:33 pm
    u_dont_know_me - Due to jurisdiction issues, Federal Agents would not as a rule be investigating crimes unless they were federal crimes and if the local/State police GAVE them jurisdiction to do so. IdahoHeathen - Idaho State gets into trouble when they ACCEPT federal funding. Idaho as is any state, is a sovereign state apart from the federal government. We are sovereign citizens of Idaho, not of the federal government. We should all be reading and informing ourselves of what State's Rights are. THIS was the reason for the Civil War and if we're not careful, our government will drag us back down that road again but this time they will bring in communism. That's what all this chaos on a daily basis is about. They are trying to keep the chaos going -- and doing a darned good job of it. An excellent video on jurisdiction and State's Rights: http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6BbFqlGFZOs
  5. u_dont_know_me
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    u_dont_know_me - February 25, 2013 2:30 pm
    Surely you wouldn't charge them with a crime for seizing the banned weapons when used in a crime. What protections for Federal Agents investigating those crimes?
  6. Don't tread on me
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    Don't tread on me - February 25, 2013 2:12 pm
    IH, you can contact your legislator and encourage him/her to vote for the bill. Thats what I am doing. You are correct that the States are somewhat beholding to the feds and that gets in the way of progress.
  7. IdahoHeathen
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    IdahoHeathen - February 25, 2013 11:23 am
    One of the few things some of our state legislators is actually getting right probably won't pass because the instant the Obama administration threatens to withhold federal funding for states that don't comply with the anti-2nd Amendment wave sweeping through D.C. our subsidy-dependent legislators will most likely cave. (For every dollar Idahoans pay in federal taxes, our state government gets about $1.20 - $1.25.) In other words, Idaho's government as a whole is on WELFARE and that's why I expect them to always capitulate - whether it's on health care or gun "control" or whatever.

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