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2 Conn. police chiefs oppose concealed carry bill

The Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act would force PDs to honor the concealed carry weapons permit from every state

By Tara O'Neil
Connecticut Post, Bridgeport, Conn.

BRIDGEPORT, Conn. — The chiefs of the Westport and Fairfield police departments together signed their opposition Friday to the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act — a bill currently being considered in Congress.

Westport Police Chief Foti Koskinas and Fairfield Police Chief Gary MacNamara signed a letter written by law enforcement personnel that opposes the Concealed Carry Reciprocity Act. If passed, the bill would force Connecticut police departments to honor the concealed carry weapons permit from every state.

Honoring those permits from other states, would mean that those with a pistol permit are free to cross state lines with a firearm on their person.

“This is very dangerous for the public and our officers,” Koskinas said. “Here in Connecticut we require in-depth background checks and firearms safety training. We would now be forced to allow individuals to carry guns from states that may not employ these rigorous requirements.”

MacNamara echoed Koskinas concerns.

“Other states have different requirements (from Connecticut),” MacNamara said. “Some may be more strict, and some less. To allow individuals from other states, who may not meet our background requirements to carry a firearm in our state, may place our officers, the community and legal Connecticut pistol permit holders at risk.”

A news release from the Westport Police Department said the police chiefs signed the letter to alert Congress of what they consider to be a “dangerous threat to our officers and to public safety.”

"We conduct a thorough background when issuing a pistol permit to our residents, designed to ensure they meet the requirements and that they are not statutorily disqualified from carrying a firearm. They have taken prior training to understand the laws, safe handling and safe storage of firearms."

There is a process in place for those non-Connecticut residents who wish to carry a firearm within the State of Ct. , which does allow for a background review.

©2017 the Connecticut Post (Bridgeport, Conn.)

McClatchy-Tribune News Service

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