GunsHot Sheet

Boulder ready to pull the trigger on assault-weapons ban

Author: Mark Harden - May 2, 2018 - Updated: May 2, 2018

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Boulder’s pedestrian 16th Street Mall. (Mark Harden, Colorado Politics)

Boulder — a city where a local bank once handed out rifles to customers — is about to pass a law far less friendly to firearms.

The Boulder City Council Tuesday night gave tentative approval to a ban on the sale and possession of what the city defines as “assault weapons” — a proposal that sparked a pro-gun street protest in the left-leaning college town last month.

The measure also would ban bump stocks (a.k.a. “multi-burst trigger activators”) and high-capacity magazines holding 10 or more rounds.

It was approved unanimously Tuesday and now must undergo a third reading in a few weeks, KUSA-9News reports. The third reading may lead to some amendments to the measure.

In the debate over gun rights and gun control, there’s much disagreement over exactly what an “assault weapon” is. As drafted, Boulder’s proposed ordinance  defines “assault weapons” as:

All semiautomatic rifles that have the capacity to accept a detachable magazine and that have any of the following characteristics: a pistol grip or thumbhole stock; a folding or telescoping stock; or any protruding grip or other device to allow the weapon to be stabilized with the non-trigger hand.

All semiautomatic center-fire pistols that have any of the following characteristics: the capacity to accept a magazine other than in the pistol grip or any device to allow the weapon to be stabilized with the non-trigger hand.

Any firearm that has been modified to be operable as an assault weapon as defined by the city, plus any part or combination or parts designed to convert a firearm into an assault weapon.

Under the measure, Boulderites would have 30 days to get rid of bump stocks and until the end of the year to dispose of high-capacity magazines. The ordinance would exempt law enforcement, military personnel and federal officers.

The Boulder Daily Camera reports here on the debate over the law.

Mark Harden

Mark Harden

Mark Harden is managing editor of Colorado Politics. He previously was news director at the Denver Business Journal; city editor, online news editor, state editor, national editor and popular music critic at The Denver Post; and an editor and reporter at newspapers in the Seattle area and San Francisco.