SUNDANCE (WNE) — Though the Second Amendment Preservation Act made it through the Wyoming Senate, it will not go any further. Senate File 81 died upon introduction to the House.
The bill was intended to prevent firearms from being confiscated due to federal laws that may be passed in the future. It caused controversy in its original form because it placed the accountability for preventing unwanted laws from being enforced on Wyoming’s law enforcement officers.
Because the bill specified that anyone who enforced a federal law that Wyoming feels infringes on Second Amendment Rights would be “permanently ineligible to serve as a law enforcement officer,” Crook County Sheriff Jeff Hodge and his 22 counterparts around the state expressed concern that it could turn an ordinary arrest into a career-ending decision for a peace officer.
An officer would not have the authority to, for example, confiscate a firearm during a domestic altercation or when being used in self-defense.
In a real-life situation where a crime has been committed, a peace officer may seize a firearm as evidence or to prevent further harm from being inflicted.
However, if the case becomes federal and the gun owner is ultimately not convicted of any crime and thus remains a law-abiding citizen, that decision would lead to the officer losing his job.
The bill was passed out of the Senate with a vote of 24-6. However, on March 31, it was determined that it would not be considered for introduction in the House.