Microstamping Bill Being Debated

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Police chiefs, district attorneys and mayors from across the state advocated for legislation today that would require shell casings from semi-automatic handguns to be stamped as a way to help investigators at crime scenes.

The microstamping technology would imprint a unique code on the casings that could help police track a gun’s purchase and owner, advocates said. The legislation passed the state Assembly and was set for a vote today in the Senate, but it was unclear whether Democrats could get enough support from Republicans to get the 32 votes for it to pass.

Three upstate Democratic Sens. Darrel Aubertine, David Valesky and William Stachowski are expected to vote no, leaving advocates to seek support from the three New York City Republican senators — Andrew Lanza, Frank Padavan and Martin Golden. Rochester Police Chief David Moore said he planned to meet with Sen. Joseph Robach, R-Greece, Monroe County, this afternoon in Albany to ask him to back the legislation.

If passed, New York would be the second state in the nation to adopt the technology. California passed it in 2007.

“Let me stress that this has nothing to do with the Second Amendment,” said New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg, who is leading the charge for the legislation. “It has everything to do with protecting the public and saving lives.”

Gun-rights groups denounced the legislation, saying that studies have shown that the technology is unproven, California has yet to implement it because of patent issues and the testing would be expensive. Also, they warned that New York gun manufacturers would need to reconfigure its products, which would raise costs and limit gun sales in the state.

The firearms industry employs nearly 4,000 people in New York, the gun-rights groups said, including Kimber in Yonkers and the Remington Arms Co. in Ilion, Herkimer County.

“They are foisting upon the people of New York state legislation they think is going to make them safer but in effect is not going to do anything at all,” said Tom King, president of the New York State Rifle and Pistol Association.

In a statement, Kimber said it is unaware of any study that proves microstamping is effective in reducing crime.

“Absent definitive findings on both issues, microstamping legislation yields little more than a false sense of achievement for our elected officials,” said Kimber COO Ralph Karanian. “It will likely cost New York all-important manufacturing jobs and tax revenues, but most notably it will distract us from the pursuit of truly effective solutions.”

But Yonkers officials said they support the measure. Yonkers Mayor Philip Amicone, who was listed as an attendee at the event but didn’t show up, supports the legislation, a spokesman said, while Sen. Andrea Stewart-Cousins, D-Yonkers, said she will back it as well.

“It has always been my belief that we can do things to stop criminal activity,” she said. “I certainly support my gun manufacturer, and I appreciate they’re in my district, but I see it as two separate issues. I think it’s important that businesses, legitimate business, thrive and that’s one thing. But it’s also important that we discourage criminal activity.”

New York Mayors Against Illegal Guns starting running ads today around the state. Here’s one of the television spots.

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  1. russwill@nycap.rr.com on

    ON THE SUBJECT OF S.6005 THAT WOULD REQUIRE MICROSTAMPING: Let us pause to consider other similar scenarios beyond questions of firearms manufacture and use and the Second Amendment. Let us suppose the members of the Legislature who support S.6005 were considering how to save lives during airplace failures. They might print coordinated letters in the major newspapers of New York state that say something like this: “Airliners crash. Large weather balloons filled to optimum with helium and located at strategic points along the fusilage of passenger and other planes might prevent such crashes, allowing time for planes to return to an airport or prevent the hard landings that kill human beings. Let’s do that and save lives. [Of course, you will hear that this solution is faulty, that the balloons would tear open and release helium during flight, and that the planes would crash anyhow. But that is distractive talk from those who would prevent further regulation of airlines without concern for lives saved. Such people are immoral and without conscience.]”

    That, friends, is the quality of the argument in favor of S.6005: touting a sole-source technology from a manufacturer who lays great claims for the present laser technology it would sell-by-force in NY, while at the same time the major students of the micro-stamping technology in question [see the Forensics Team led by David Howitt, Ph.D., report that has been published at University of California at Davis at the request of the CA state Legislature. The reports makes plain that the technology is faulty and easily defeated by common tools such as might be found around the home, and recommended that the Legislature NOT act on the bill then before it: the Legislature, has in turn and in fact, has not acted.

    We may be sure that helium filled balloons that will not work in California will also not work in New York: S.6005 should be opposed and defeated. If the result of the vote is otherwise, the quality and purposes of the Senate majority leading this charge to change New York law will be made patent: _to deny_ New York manufacturers the right to make sound business decisions, and _to deny_ to citizens the guarantee of the Second Amendment to have access to firearms.

    S.6005 is not the nose of the camel but the camel manifest.

  2. Microstamping is pure politics. No one thinks it will either reduce crime or help solve crimes. Bloomberg seems to have an anti-gun fetish, and he’s once again buying his way to what he wants. This time its the Republicans who are for sale, and he’s offering 30 pieces of silver so they’ll sell their souls for his anti-gun, nanny state version of socialism. Ironic given his success as a businessman, but he seems to be following in George Soros’ footsteps as a self-loathing capitalist. There is no question the Republicans are for sale — the question is whether the cash Bloomberg gives means more to them than the votes they’ll lose from GOP voters who realize they’ve been betrayed.

  3. All this crying over what? The highly touted COBIS was supposed to creat a data base identifying ALL new handgun by collecting a spent case before the handgun was sold. Several years and that many more millions of dollars and not one case solved. Micro-stamping would have been redundant and only applied to semi-automatic pistols sold in NY. Ask anyone that has a handgun licenses what a PITA it is to get one and what you have to do to buy another handgun, those that have licenses are not selling illegal guns to people that cannot have them because the Sheriffs Office is keeping track of the handguns on the licenses.
    Just another diversionary waste of time & resource instead of cutting taxes and passing a budget….they just don’t get it.

  4. The reason guns were protected in the constitution was to insure that the government was obedient of the people’s wishes.

    You can tell that is the real reason, because the media never ever mentions it.

  5. AMERICAN PATRIOT on

    THE GUNS THAT ARE DOING THE KILLING ARE ILLEGAL, MOSTLY ACQUIRED THROUGH ROBBERIES OR THEFTS, ONCE THAT OCCURS THE GUNS WILL NEVER BE FOUND AGAIN. THE ORIGINAL GUN OWNER REPORTS THAT THE GUN HAD BEEN STOLEN, 2 MONTHS LATER THE AUTHORITIES FIND THAT IT WAS USED IN A ROBBERY OR HOMICIDE, WILL IT MAKE A DIFFERENCE AT THAT POINT WHETHER OR NOT ITS MICROSTAMPED? BECAUSE NO LEGAL GUN OWNERS ARE GONNA BE THE ONES COMMITTING THE ROBBERIES OR HOMICIDES !!!!! WAKE UP !!! THIS IS JUST A BACKDOOR TO ULTIMATELY GETTING RID OF THE SECOND AMENDMENT !!!!!!! WHICH IF THAT EVER IS THREATENED, YOU CAN COUNT ON IT BEING THE BEGINNING OF THE SECOND AMERICAN REVOLUTION !!!!!!

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