Boulder Sheriff Joe Pelle: Buyback conforms with new Colorado guns laws

I am not sure that this gun buy back does conform to the new Colorado Laws.  ebarnes

When his office was approached by a group of local faith leaders about working on a gun buyback event, Boulder County Sheriff Joe Pelle said he had a few questions about how they would conform with Colorado’s new gun control laws.

Specifically, Pelle said he wanted to know how a recently passed state law requiring universal background checks for gun buyers and another new law banning the sale or purchase of gun magazines of greater than 15 rounds might impact the buyback.

After consulting Deputy County Attorney Dea Wheeler, Pelle concluded that as long as members of Together Colorado — the buyback’s organizing group, which bills itself as a “non-partisan, multi-racial, multi-faith community organization” — pass required background checks, it should be fully legal for them to purchase firearms at the Aug. 4 buyback.

“Background checks are required on the purchaser, not on the weapon,” Pelle said. “Some of the people from the nonprofit will need to go to a licensed (firearms) dealer and get their $10 check. They’re all rabbis and ministers and stuff so hopefully they won’t have any problem with that.”

As for “high-capacity” magazines, under the state law that took effect July 1, it is illegal to buy or sell gun magazines that hold more than 15 rounds of ammunition. But that doesn’t mean people could not bring such magazines to the buyback event for disposal, Pelle said. Together Colorado simply could not serve as a middleman in the transaction.

“The person would either have to elect to keep it or sign it over to us for destruction if they wish to,” Pelle said.

Gift cards, tickets

The buyback will be held from noon to 4 p.m. in the parking lot of the Boulder County Sheriff’s Office headquarters at 5600 Flatiron Parkway.

Together Colorado will compensate the deputies assigned to work the event, which will not cost taxpayers any money, Pelle said.

Together Colorado is working with a group of recent Centaurus High School graduates to host the event. The students completed the University of Colorado’s Public Achievement Program, but the college and the program are not in any way involved in the buyback event, officials say.

Those who turn in firearms at the buyback will receive gift cards or tickets to sporting events that were purchased with nearly $8,000 raised by the students.

All guns collected will be immediately handed over to the sheriff’s office for destruction, though some remnants of the destroyed firearms will be passed along to Boulder-area metalworking artist Jessica Adams for use in a sculpture aimed at creating gun violence awareness, organizers said.

‘Relatively painless’

Rev. Ted Howard, of St. John’s Episcopal Church in Boulder, is one of three Together Colorado members who plan to go through with the required background check. He said he went online to the Colorado Bureau of Investigation website recently and paid for a background check on himself, but plans to meet with sheriff’s officials Monday to make sure he knows exactly what the gun background check process entails before the event itself.

“It was very quick. Relatively easy and relatively painless to go through,” Howard said of the online check. “I went through to it just to see whether I was going to face any problems. I didn’t expect to, because, to my knowledge, I don’t have a criminal background.”

Rev. Sheila Dierks, another organization member, said she does not see the buyback as a statement on the Second Amendment, but a way to help increase public safety and spread awareness about Together Colorado’s mission of promoting non-violence in the community.

She said she has heard some positive feedback about the event and received a few commitments from people who plan to bring in guns, but she was reluctant to estimate how many weapons she expects to be collected.

“We have no idea what to expect. We’ve never done this before,” she said. “The question is, ‘Can we invite people to safely get rid of guns?’ And the answer needs to be, ‘Yes.’ We need to be able to do that.”

Here is the response from a FFL dealer:

Pelle is crazy as a bedbug. I’m a Federally Licensed Firearms dealer (FFL) and I’ve read the new state law and fully understand its meaning. I better. I’m charged by both the federal government and the State to correctly and legally implement both federal and state background checks. The instacheck is required for EACH transaction by each transferor (seller), not transferee (buyer). There’s no such thing as a blanket background check on a person to receive an unlimited number of firearms from an unlimited number of people. Let me quote a few parts of the new Colorado law: “A prospective firearm transferor (seller) shall arrange for the services of one or more licensed gun dealers to obtain a background check. A prospective firearm transferee (buyer) shall not accept possession of a firearm unless the prospective firearm transferor (seller) has obtained approval of the transfer from the bureau after a background check has been requested by a licensed gun dealer.” “A PROSPECTIVE FIREARM TRANSFEROR WHO IS NOT A LICENSED GUN DEALER SHALL ARRANGE FOR A LICENSED GUN DEALER TO OBTAIN THE BACKGROUND CHECK REQUIRED BY THIS SECTION” Note right above that the TRANSFEROR (seller) is the one to make the arrangement with the FFL (not the buyer) and that the TRANSFEROR (seller) has to obtain the approval before the transferee (buyer) can receive the firearm!

“A LICENSED GUN DEALER WHO OBTAINS A BACKGROUND CHECK ON A PROSPECTIVE TRANSFEREE SHALL RECORD THE TRANSFER, AS PROVIDED IN SECTION 12-26-102, C.R.S., AND RETAIN THE RECORDS, AS PROVIDED IN SECTION 12-26-103,C.R.S., IN THE SAME MANNER AS WHEN CONDUCTING A SALE, RENTAL, OR EXCHANGE AT RETAIL. THE LICENSED GUN DEALER SHALL COMPLY WITH ALL STATE AND FEDERAL LAWS, INCLUDING 18U.S.C. SEC. 922, AS IF HE OR SHE WERE TRANSFERRING THE FIREARM FROM HIS OR HER INVENTORY TO THE PROSPECTIVE TRANSFEREE.” What this means is that the FFL doing the check must use Federal Form 4473 FOR EACH DIFFERNET TRANSACTION! A separate 4473 form and a separate instacheck and a separate fee must be made for each separate transfer, that is for each transferor (seller) tranferring a firearm. Each firearm being transferred by the transferor (seller) is listed on the form 4473 for that particular transfer, including manufacturer, model, serial number and caliber, and the total number of firearms being transferred. All of this MUST be noted by the FFL BEFORE requesting the instacheck. Additionally, the FFL MUST enter all of this information in their “Big Book”, recording the information about the firearms being transferred, as well as names, addresses, occupations, and ages of BOTH the transferor (seller) and the transferee (buyer) ! Thus there MUST be a separate 4473, separate instacheck, separate fee, and a separate Big Book entry for each different transfer. Finally: “A LICENSED GUN DEALER WHO OBTAINS A BACKGROUND CHECK FOR A PROSPECTIVE FIREARM TRANSFEROR PURSUANT TO THIS SECTION SHALL PROVIDE THE FIREARM TRANSFEROR A COPY OF THE RESULTS OF THE BACKGROUND CHECK, INCLUDING THE BUREAU’S APPROVAL OR DISAPPROVAL OF THE TRANSFER.” Again, note that the FFL provides the TRANSFEROR (seller) the results of the instacheck for their proposed transfer, not the transferee (buyer). Furthermore, all of this has to be done IN PERSON AT THE FLL’s place of business. It CAN NOT be done over the phone. This includes the fact that the firearms THEMSELVES have to be taken to the FFL’s place of business in person by the transferor and picked up in person by the transferee. Pelle’s ignorance of this law is completely outrageous, not to mention that his advice puts every one of these buyback tranferee’s and tranferors in violation of the state law!


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