Lawmakers move gun permit bill forward - WFSB 3 Connecticut

Lawmakers move gun permit bill forward

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(MGN photo) (MGN photo)

Connecticut is an open-carry state, but the act of carrying in the open could soon lead to some extra police questioning.

A bill that would allow police to ask anyone suspected of a crime to produce their permit was passed by the Public Safety Committee on Thursday.

While there are some who don’t mind the proposed bill, some are definitely against it.

“It most certainly is an attack on the gun and the gun owner,” said Joe Dobrowolsky, of Lebanon, who is a pistol owner.

“I'm one of those people that can get riled up but I don't see this as something that's infringing on rights,” said Dan Whaley, of East Hartford, who also is a pistol owner.

Right now in Connecticut, police can ask anyone suspected of a crime to show their permit, but the gun owner doesn’t have to. Feeling like this could be a safety issue, lawmakers are looking to change that.

“I don't think we are taking away anyone's right to bear or own guns. It's just how do we enforce on today's society? We have ads on TV, ‘see something, say something’,” said State Rep. Steve Dargan, a democrat who is the co-chair of the Public Safety Committee.

Now that the committee passed the proposal, it goes to the House of Representatives.

“Police want to do it because if they see you're carrying a gun, they don't know if you're a criminal, convicted felon or something like that, and any good law-abiding citizen would have their permit on them and would show it with no issue,” Whaley said.

Others said they are worried about the civil rights this bill may concede to police.

“I don't feel that it's necessary because the only thing it's going to impose upon is the legal and law-abiding gun owners who have already gone through all the possible steps to attain that permit,” Dobrowolsky said.

“I don't have a problem with it, but I do think that they're getting a little too carried away with these laws,” said Dan Smith of Thomaston.

While gun owners have varying opinions, most did agree that if they are approached by police, they would most likely show their permit because they have nothing to hide.

This still is not a law, as it must be voted on by the House of Representatives next.

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