Feb 13, 2013 6:45 PM by Lacey Steele

Two local sheriffs weigh in on gun debate

With the gun control debate firmly in the cross hairs at the state legislature and controversial proposals to ban assault weapons, expand background checks, and limit ammo clips, local law enforcement is having a chance to weigh in.

Tonight, a conversation with both the Pueblo and Fremont County Sheriffs.

Sheriff Jim Beicker of Fremont County doesn't believe we should go against the second amendment.

"I am hesitant when we add laws restricting firearms because we're talking about Constitutional rights," said Sheriff Beicker.

He'd rather enforce those laws already on the books, and Sheriff Kirk Taylor of Pueblo County agrees.

"Our legislature is now attempting to restrict the Constitutional right to bare arms without adequate funding for or systems in place to enforce it," said Sheriff Kirk Taylor of Pueblo County.

They say the problem isn't the weapon.

"Firearms don't scare me," said Sheriff Beicker. "It's firearms in the hands of the wrong people that continue to be the problem. I don't think we have a gun problem. I think we have a people problem."

"I think the current gun legislation that they proposed is an effort to address a problem in the wrong manner," said Sheriff Taylor.

Which is why they think things like mental health should be looked into again instead of gun laws.

"What are the consequences down the road of that when we're talking about people's rights," said Sheriff Beicker.

Beicker was one of the sheriff's who went to speak against a House Bill that requires background checks for private gun transfers.

"There were sheriffs at the Capitol yesterday that stood in opposition to that bill because there's some consequences, unintended consequences, with that bill down the road," said Sheriff Beicker.

They both say they'll stand behind the second amendment for their constituents.

We've also spoken to El Paso County Sheriff Terry Maketa in the past who also believes the focus should be on the people committing the crimes, not the weapons involved.



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