On October 19, 2016, State Representatives Robert Wittenberg (D-Oak Park), introduced House Bill 5996, a bill to regulate the manufacture, possession, sale or transfer of “assault weapons.”
The bill defines assault weapons to include some semiautomatic pistols or semiautomatic or pump-action rifles that are capable of accepting a detachable magazine if, in the case of a rifle, it has a pistol grip, barrel shroud, or muzzle break, or a pistol with a shoulder stock or one that is capable of accepting a magazine anywhere outside the pistol grip.
A shotgun that is capable of accepting a detachable magazine, or one with a revolving cylinder would also be regulated.
Opponents of the proposed measure argue that anything that has a pistol grip on it, basically any semi–automatic with a pistol grip, would be considered an assault weapon and therefore banned from sale or possession.
The bill also requires anyone who already owns an assault rifle to register the weapon with the state police on an annual basis in order to continue to possess it, and then only on their own property or at a shooting range.
Any violation would be a felony with up to 4 years imprisonment and a fine of $2,100, or both, as well as revocation of any registration the person may have to possession a regulated weapon.
The bill has been referred to the House Committee on Criminal Justice for consideration and review.
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