BOSTON (WWLP) – Forty-two states allow private ownership of firearm suppressors, but Massachusetts is not one of them. Ownership could become legal if lawmakers pass a bill filed by State Senator Don Humason (R-Westfield).
State Lawmakers are considering the bill that would remove a Massachusetts ban on firearm suppressors, or a device used to silence, muffle or diminish the noise of a firearm.
Second amendment advocates said the move would protect the hearing of firearm safety instructors and hunters.
“There’s just a really big misunderstanding about what people think they are because they see the old James Bond movies or whatever they might be and you hear just a whisper,” Gun Owners Action League Executive Director Jim Wallace told 22News. “That’s not even close to what these things are. They’re actually still very loud.”
Some lawmakers are concerned removing the ban on suppressors or silencers could put the public or law enforcement at risk.
State Representative David Linsky (D-Natick) opposes the bill. He said the devices are dangerous and can confuse police during active shooting situations.
“During every mass shooting, survivors tell how they were able to escape because they became aware of the shooter because of the sound of the gun shots,” Linsky said.
Linsky referenced a California shooting that took place just a few weeks ago. School officials allegedly heard gunfire and locked down classrooms at an elementary school the gunman went to. Linsky is concerned there could be more victims in instances like this if guns are silenced.
The state’s Public Safety and Homeland Security Committee is currently reviewing testimony on the bill before making recommendations to the state.