New gun bill today. I call this the “show me your papers, mach schnell!” bill.
H.B. No. 7028 (RAISED) JUDICIARY . ‘AN ACT CONCERNING THE DEPARTMENT OF CORRECTION, ACCESS TO THE FIREARMS DATABASE BY PAROLE OFFICERS, AND PRESENTATION OF A CARRY PERMIT’, to make technical changes to the Department of Correction statutes, to permit parole officers access to the firearms database and to require the holder of a pistol carry permit to present such permit upon request of a law enforcement officer.
Here’s the troubling part.
Sec. 24. Subsection (b) of section 29-35 of the general statutes is repealed and the following is substituted in lieu thereof (Effective October 1, 2015):
(b) The holder of a permit issued pursuant to section 29-28 shall carry such permit upon one’s person while carrying such pistol or revolver. Such holder shall present his or her permit upon the request of a law enforcement officer for purposes of verification of the validity of the permit or identification of the holder.
Connecticut does not have any “stop and identify” law. (Motor vehicle laws are different. You consent to being stopped while driving when you get your driver’s license). The US Supreme Court has generally upheld that police may not stop a person and ask for identification without a reasonable suspicion that a crime has been or is about to be committed.
This proposed bill changes that, and treats certain people like second-class citizens simply because they have a legally owned object on their person.
Now, lots of people are going to say “If you aren’t breaking the law, what’s the big deal?” The big deal is law-abiding gun owners would be stripped of a Fourth Amendment protection every other person in Connecticut enjoys; the right to simply go about your business without being stopped to have your identification checked and verified. To me, that’s a big deal. Of course, if you actually ARE a criminal, you would be exempt from this bill. That’s because the Supreme Court has also ruled that criminals have a 5th Amendment right protecting them from self-incrimination. See Haynes v. United States for one example.
It’s important to remember that right now this is just a raised bill. That means it’s just an idea that the legislators on the Judiciary Committee are discussing to see if it has merit. The vast majority of raised bills never go beyond this point. The next step would be a public hearing, and if it gets that far you can be sure we’ll let you know.
Public hearing is scheduled for March 20, 2015. More info can be found here.
To see ALL the gun bills for this legislative session, click here.