54 Sheriffs File Lawsuit Against The State
KREX News Room
DENVER- Most of Colorado's elected sheriffs are trying to strike new gun restrictions with a federal lawsuit against the state.
Dozens of sheriffs gathered Friday in Denver to file the suit.
The gun laws passed this spring limit the size of ammunition magazines, and expand background checks to private and online firearm sales.
The sheriffs argue that the laws have many flaws that will make it nearly impossible for citizens to comply with and they insist the measures won't improve public safety.
They say the laws violate not only the Second Amendment by outlawing a commonly owned firearm; but also the Fourteenth Amendment which requires laws to be easily understood so they can be enforced fairly.
"And in their rush to pass new laws didn't bother listening to the people charged with enforcing the law. We tried telling the governor but he would not even meet with us. We tried telling the state legislators but a narrow majority of them refused to listen," explains Sheriff John Cook from Weld County.
Mesa County Sheriff Stan Hilkey signed on to become a plaintiff in the lawsuit.
NewsChannel 5 spoke with Hilkey about the announcement and why he agrees with the other 53 sheriff's.
"I think first of all, there's a large constituency here, in Mesa County that believe that these are encroachments on their Second Amendment rights. Being an elected official it makes a lot of sense to represent them in that way. The legal process is a great test of the constitutionality of a law. The second part of it is there's some real badly written pieces of this legislation, particularly the piece with the magazine capacity that really needs to be clarified," explains Hilkey.
The sheriffs say they're only using private funds for the suit.