HARTFORD, Conn. (WTNH)– News 8 first reported last month that a total of just over 50,000 so-called “assault weapons” and about 39,000 high capacity ammunition magazines were registered in Connecticut by the December 31st deadline.
There were several hundred more applications that missed the December 31st deadline, because the post office closed early on New Year’s Eve and caused the applications to have a January post mark.
State Senator Tony Guglielmo says that today the Public Safety Committee discussed ways to honor those late applications. He also mentioned that some constituents are telling him they are ignoring the law.
“If you get caught, I mean, this is serious business, and I wouldn’t recommend it to anybody,” he said.
The House Minority Leader says he has heard from constituents who said they did not realize that they had to register.
“One of the examples is; the magazines, magazines that go into a pistol that have more than ten rounds; they were under the belief that so long as they only carried ten rounds they’d be fine…they didn’t realize that it also required them to register,” said Rep. Larry Cafero, (R) Minority Leader.
There are some estimates that indicate there are thousands more of these weapons in Connecticut than the registration numbers imply.
“We know how many people have registered assault weapons, we can go back and look at how many were sold in the state over the last ten or fifteen years,” said Mike Lawlor, Gov’s Criminal Justice Adviser.
Right now, it’s not clear if the state is planning to try to match up those two lists. It’s not even clear that the state has the capacity to do it and some people may have gotten rid of them.
“Presumably, some people, after the Newtown incident decided that owning an assault weapon was more trouble than it’s worth and lawfully got rid of them, which is an option and continues to be an option…over time, we’ll find out,” said Lawlor.
“It’s a serious, it’s a felony, it’s something that I wouldn’t toy with this…let me put it that way,” said Guglielmo.
Guglielmo is a Republican that voted against this law.
There is talk at the Capitol about circulating letters to all the gun ranges and shooting clubs around the state reminding people of the potential dangers of violating this law.