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Pennsylvania House of Representatives
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House of Representatives
Session of 2023 - 2024 Regular Session


Posted: December 12, 2022 09:30 AM
From: Representative Benjamin V. Sanchez
To: All House members
Subject: Ban on Multi-Burst Trigger Activators

Imagine going to an outdoor concert with family and friends, but instead of great festivities and music, you were met with gunfire and screams. This was the scene when a gunman opened fire during a Las Vegas music event in October of 2017. The gunman had a dozen rifles outfitted with bump stocks and killed 58 people while wounding hundreds more. Bump stocks work by harnessing a firearm’s recoil energy to allow it to continue firing after a single pull of the trigger, thereby transforming a semiautomatic weapon into a fully automatic machine gun. These firearm modifications are described as being able to simulate fully automatic rates of fire, and are able to expel over 600 rounds per minute—more than 9 rounds per second. In 2018, the federal government redefined machine guns, which are illegal, to include bump stocks, effectively banning them at the federal level. Yet according to the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives, there are as many as 520,000 bump stocks circulating throughout the United States today. Furthermore, the policy could be changed under a future administration.

For this reason, I will be introducing legislation that would include “multi-burst trigger activators” to the list of offensive weapons under current law, including items such as binary triggers and slide fire/bump stocks like the one used in the Las Vegas shooting. The Pennsylvania crimes code currently bans “offensive weapons,” which includes items such as machine guns, sawed-off shotguns, and grenades. A violation of this section carries a penalty of a first-degree misdemeanor. It is vital that we protect the people of Pennsylvania from mass shootings.

Please join me in co-sponsoring legislation to ban deadly tools that have no place in civilian society.

Introduced as HB335