THIRTIETH LEGISLATURE, 2020
STATE OF HAWAII
A BILL FOR AN ACT
RELATING TO FIREARMS.
BE IT ENACTED BY THE LEGISLATURE OF THE STATE OF HAWAII:
SECTION 1. The legislature finds that the State has some of the strongest gun safety laws in the nation, having received an A-minus rating from the Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence. However, the legislature also finds that the State can improve its gun safety laws by prohibiting the new acquisition and use of large-capacity magazines for firearms that can hold more than ten rounds of ammunition. Existing Hawaii law prohibits the use of these magazines with pistols but not with long guns, such as rifles or shotguns.
According to the Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun Violence, large-capacity magazines have been used in all ten of the deadliest mass shootings that have occurred in the last decade. Mass shootings that involve large-capacity magazines result in two to three times as many fatalities as other mass shootings. By enabling a shooter to fire repeatedly without needing to reload, these magazines significantly increase the shooter's ability to quickly injure and kill large numbers of people. For example, using an assault weapon and a drum magazine containing one hundred rounds of ammunition, the perpetrator of the 2019 mass shooting in Dayton, Ohio, was able to fire at least forty-one rounds of ammunition in less than thirty seconds. As a result, the shooter was able to kill nine people and wound twenty-six more.
Further, the legislature recognizes that the amount of time a shooter needs to reload a weapon can be a critical factor in allowing would-be victims to escape and for law enforcement or other persons to intervene. In the 2011 mass shooting in Tucson, Arizona, six people were killed and thirteen others were wounded, including United States representative Gabrielle Giffords. Fortunately, the shooting was interrupted when the perpetrator stopped to reload his weapon and was tackled by a bystander. Similarly, during the 2018 mass shooting at Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School in Parkland, Florida, students were able to flee down a stairwell as the shooter paused to reload his weapon.
The purpose of this Act is to reduce gun violence in the State by:
(1) Prohibiting the possession of large-capacity magazines for all types of firearms, unless it was legally in possession of an individual prior to this Act;
(2) Requiring every person in the State who was in possession of a detachable ammunition magazine prior to this Act to register the magazine with the appropriate county police department; and
(3) Prohibiting the sale, barter, trade, gift, transfer, or acquisition, except by means of inheritance, of a detachable ammunition magazine that was legally in an individual's possession prior to this Act and requiring the inheritor to update the registration with the appropriate county police department.
SECTION 2. Section 134-8, Hawaii Revised Statutes, is amended to read as follows:
"§134-8 Ownership, etc., of automatic firearms, silencers, etc., prohibited; penalties. (a) The manufacture, possession, sale, barter, trade, gift, transfer, or acquisition of any of the following is prohibited: assault pistols, except as provided by section 134-4(e); automatic firearms; rifles with barrel lengths less than sixteen inches; shotguns with barrel lengths less than eighteen inches; cannons; mufflers, silencers, or devices for deadening or muffling the sound of discharged firearms; hand grenades, dynamite, blasting caps, bombs, or bombshells, or other explosives; or any type of ammunition or any projectile component thereof coated with teflon or any other similar coating designed primarily to enhance its capability to penetrate metal or pierce protective armor; and any type of ammunition or any projectile component thereof designed or intended to explode or segment upon impact with its target.
(b) Any person who installs, removes, or alters a firearm part with the intent to convert the firearm to an automatic firearm shall be deemed to have manufactured an automatic firearm in violation of subsection (a).
The manufacture, possession, sale, barter, trade, gift, transfer, or
acquisition of detachable ammunition magazines with a capacity in excess of ten
which are designed for or capable of use with a pistol] is
prohibited. This subsection shall not
apply to magazines [ originally]:
(1) That were legally in possession of an individual prior to the effective date of Act , Session Laws of Hawaii 2020; and
designed to accept more than ten rounds of ammunition [
have been modified to accept no more than ten rounds and [ which] that
are not capable of being readily restored to a capacity of more than ten rounds.
(d) Every person in the State who was in possession of a detachable ammunition magazine with a capacity in excess of ten rounds prior to the effective date of Act , Session Laws of Hawaii 2020, shall register the magazine with the county police department where the magazine is located. No person shall sell, barter, trade, gift, transfer, or acquire, except by means of inheritance, a detachable ammunition magazine pursuant to this subsection; provided that upon inheriting a detachable ammunition magazine pursuant to this subsection, the inheritor shall update the registration with the appropriate county police department where the magazine is located.
(e) Detachable ammunition magazines with a capacity in excess of ten rounds may be acquired, possessed, and used by a law enforcement agency or duly authorized law enforcement officer for official purposes.
(d)] (f) Any person violating subsection (a) or (b)
shall be guilty of a class C felony and shall be imprisoned for a term of five
years without probation. Any person
violating subsection (c) shall be guilty of a misdemeanor except when a detachable
magazine prohibited under this section is possessed while inserted into a [ pistol]
firearm in which case the person shall be guilty of a class C felony."
SECTION 3. This Act does not affect rights and duties that matured, penalties that were incurred, and proceedings that were begun before its effective date.
SECTION 4. Statutory material to be repealed is bracketed and stricken. New statutory material is underscored.
SECTION 5. This Act shall take effect on January 1, 2021.
Firearms; Large-capacity Magazines; Prohibition
Prohibits the manufacture, possession, sale, barter, trade, gift, transfer, or acquisition of detachable ammunition magazines with a capacity in excess of ten rounds, regardless of the type of firearm with which the magazine is compatible, except for magazines that was legally possessed prior to this Act. Requires every person in the State who possessed a large-capacity magazine prior to this Act to register the magazine with the appropriate county police department. Prohibits the sale, barter, trade, gift, transfer, or acquisition, except by means of inheritance, of such large-capacity magazines and requires the inheritor to update registration. Makes an exception for possession and use by law enforcement agencies and officers. Effective 1/1/2021. (SD1)
The summary description of legislation appearing on this page is for informational purposes only and is not legislation or evidence of legislative intent.