Virginia Democrats have introduced a revised ban on so-called “assault weapons” that requires existing gun owners to register their firearms with the state, and also bans outright the possession of magazines that can hold more than ten rounds as well as a ban on suppressors and “trigger activators,” Bearing Arms reports.
According to the legislative summary by Delegate Mark Levine, HB 961:
The bill makes it a Class 6 felony to import, sell, transfer, manufacture, purchase, possess, or transport large-capacity firearm magazines, silencers, and trigger activators, all defined in the bill. Any person who legally owns an assault firearm, large-capacity firearm magazine, silencer, or trigger activator on July 1, 2020, may retain possession until January 1, 2021. During that time, such person shall (i) render the assault firearm, large-capacity firearm magazine, silencer, or trigger activator inoperable; (ii) remove the assault firearm, large-capacity firearm magazine, silencer, or trigger activator from the Commonwealth; (iii) transfer the assault firearm, large-capacity firearm magazine, silencer, or trigger activator to a person outside the Commonwealth who is not prohibited from possessing it; or (iv) surrender the assault firearm, large-capacity firearm magazine, silencer, or trigger activator to a state or local law-enforcement agency.
§ 18.2-10. Punishment for conviction of felony; penalty.
For Class 6 felonies, a term of imprisonment of not less than one year nor more than five years, or in the discretion of the jury or the court trying the case without a jury, confinement in jail for not more than 12 months and a fine of not more than $2,500, either or both.
Loss of Rights and Benefits
As soon as you are convicted of a Class 6 felony, you generally lose the following rights:
- Qualify to run for public office
- Own or possess a firearm
- Receive permits or licenses needed for various occupations, including lawyer, accountant and many healthcare positions.
A felony conviction automatically leads to the loss of many civil rights. While voting and owning a firearm are the best known collateral consequences, most states have dozens or more specific laws that limit opportunities for felons. Drug-related crimes can affect a person’s ability to qualify for low-income housing and Food Stamps, among other benefits.
The bill further states that any person who legally owns an assault firearm on July 1, 2020, may retain possession of such assault firearm after January 1, 2021, if such person has obtained a permit from the Department of State Police to possess an assault firearm in accordance with procedures established in the bill.
A person issued such permit may possess an assault firearm only under the following conditions: (a) while in his home or on his property or while on the property of another who has provided prior permission, provided that the person has the landowner’s written permission on his person while on such property; (b) while at a shooting range, shooting gallery, or other area designated for the purpose of target shooting or the target range of a public or private club or organization whose members have organized for the purpose of practicing shooting targets or competing in target shooting matches; (c) while engaged in lawful hunting; or (d) while surrendering the assault firearm to a state or local law-enforcement agency.
A person issued such permit may also transport an assault firearm between any of those locations, provided that such assault firearm is unloaded and secured within a closed container while being transported.
The bill also provides that failure to display the permit and a photo identification upon demand by a law-enforcement officer shall be punishable by a $25 civil penalty, which shall be paid into the state treasury.
The bill also requires the Department of State Police to enter the name and description of a person issued a permit in the Virginia Criminal Information Network (VCIN) so that the permit’s existence and current status will be made known to the law-enforcement personnel accessing VCIN for investigative purposes.
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Dean James at Right Wing Tribune