When it comes to firearms laws, the Bay State is bonkers. An otherwise law-abiding gun owner faces 10 years in jail for the simple possession of a post-’94 magazine capable of holding even one bullet more than ten rounds of ammunition. That’s courtesy of the Massachusetts legislature. And now lawmakers in Lowell, Massachusetts (a.k.a. Spindle City) want to pass a law that would require homeowners owning ten or more firearms to store all the weapons in a locked safe. That’s alarmed. Connected directly to the police. Those who don’t follow the storage procedures would face their own lock-up, for five years. According to lowellsun.com, it all started when . . .

. . . thieves broke into a home in the Acre neighborhood on a weekend in early January and stole about 40 guns from a homemade vault, police were not notified until the homeowner returned to his property early the next week.

Since then, two men have been indicted for their alleged roles in the crime, but just a handful of the guns stolen from 9 Dublin St. have been recovered.

“Those weapons are out on the street and in the hands of criminals,” said Lowell Police Superintendent Kenneth Lavallee.

In order to prevent similar incidents in Lowell and the movement of guns from the hands of law-abiding citizens to lawbreakers, Lavallee, Middlesex District Attorney Gerard Leone and Rep. Kevin Murphy helped city officials craft a home-rule petition seeking the power to require owners of 10 or more firearms to notify police of the weapons’ location within 24 hours of possessing them.

The proposed law would also require owners of more than 10 firearms to secure them in a locked safe or vault and install an alarm system with central monitoring that would notify police when the alarm is activated.

As they might say in Lowell, no friggin’ way. As they say in California, yes way.

The City Council voted unanimously Tuesday night to send the home-rule petition to the state Legislature. If the proposal receives state approval, Lowell would be the only community in the state requiring residents who possess large numbers of firearms to tell the city of their location and install an alarm system, Lavallee and gun-owner advocates said.

Gun owner advocates? An expensive system that tells the cops when and how often you open your gun safe? A law that what, allows the cops to come in and count the number of guns in your possession? How do I put this delicately . . . are you shitting me?

James Machado, executive director of the Massachusetts Police Association, praised Lowell’s proposal for its potential public-safety benefits, but said law-enforcement officials must make sure there are strong protections in place so that criminals are unable to access any gun database the city would create.

“The police will have to be careful how they alert each other,” Machado said. “It is not something you want to talk about over the air.”

Machado also cautioned that the law will only be effective if it calls for gun owners to place their weapons in safes and vaults that are extremely difficult to penetrate. A lock box where people typically place their insurance papers should not qualify, he said.

C’mon. Get out a here.

Murphy, a Lowell Democrat whose district includes Dublin Street, said the city was wise to take the home-rule route because it would be much more difficult to pass statewide legislation with similar provisions. If the petition makes it through the legislative process and proves successful in stemming gun violence in Lowell, it could become a statewide model, he said.

“I hope the argument that we are only talking about the city of Lowell, which is an urban center with gun-violence issues, will help its chances,” Murphy said.

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27 Responses to Lowell, MA: 5 Years in Jail for Failing to Store Multiple Guns in a Safe

  1. Permanent assault weapons ban signed by Mitt Romney in 2004. If you vote for Romney, you’re an idiot.

  2. I grew up in Lowell. It was a great place as a kid but the fact that I moved to NH says something about the city and the state.

    P.S. It’s name “The Spindle City” comes from it’s founding as a major textile manufacturing area back in the 1840’s.

  3. You know why we need safe storage laws? Because you guys don’t do it on your own. There’s too much easy gun theft and kids getting ahold of guns, that’s why.

    • This is beyond safe storage. It is already the law in MA that you have to either have your weapon on you or secured in a qualified locked container (no trigger locks). The only thing this legislation does is require people who own a certain number of firearms to notify the government about them and give them a way to constantly monitor them. Not to mention the fact that it requires citizens to purchase a private service (the alarm) in order to exercise their rights.

      You could take their logic and then make it 5 guns, or 3. In fact, how about just 1 gun? If you own a gun, you need to lock it up and let the police know where it is, and they must be able to remotely monitor it. In fact, you should probably need permission before you open the safe- just leave the combination with the local PD and call them if you need the gun. I mean, if it saves just one life! Oh, and don’t worry about information security- police departments’ computer systems and personnel are airtight!!

    • What’s “safe”? Who are “you guys”? How much is “too much”?

      While you may have some good points here mike (I’m not saying you do), generalizations will not further the discussion in a meaningful way.

      Locking lawful gun owners in a cage for five years because they don’t secure their firearms in a manner that you or some other third party thinks is reasonable is complete nonsense.

      And let me add my own generalization: The politicians in Lowell, MA are effing nuts.

      • Admittedly I store like Charles Bronson-ready for all comers-but I have no kids and have 2 guard dogs inside.

    • If someone broke into my home, stole my camera, and then used it to produce child porn, should I be held liable for that?

      • Yes. And we should sue the camera companies for profiteering off of kiddie porn. They’re enabling the smut.

      • But, don’t’cha’ know, to MikeyB, GUNZ R DIFFRENT!

        No analogy is valid. No comparison holds. And no reapplication of his “logic” (oh, how I hate to use that word to describe his mental processes) is worthy of consideration.

        Punishing victims for being victims is wrong. Anyone who advocates for this (and MikeB is, make no doubt) is pretty much scum.

  4. Since then, two men have been indicted for their alleged roles in the crime, but just a handful of the guns stolen from 9 Dublin St. have been recovered.

    Just love it when the media publishes names and HOME ADDRESSES of victims. They might as well have said, “For all you criminals out there who want to go see if there are any guns left to take, here’s the address: _______________.”

    I wouldn’t live in Massachusetts for all the tea in China. Seriously, if they GAVE me a house and a well-paying job, I wouldn’t go there. No way. And, I’ve got two brothers there. Poor saps.

  5. Yet another entry on the list of reasons to NOT move to the north east. That list is getting really long.

    • The trouble with your statement is that it does not encompass the whole nation; Everywhere is getting that bad. We need to do away with the liberal (for lack of a better word) mentality.

  6. Another ‘hidden tax’ for us regular folks. Making gun ownership a privilege for the rich. There’d be no way in h3ll I’d tell the police where and how many guns I have. Let alone let them have a direct line if the alarm goes off. Law or not, that IS an invasion of privacy.

  7. “The right of the people to be secure in their persons, houses, papers, and effects, against unreasonable searches and seizures, shall not be violated, and no Warrants shall issue, but upon probable cause, supported by Oath or affirmation, and particularly describing the place to be searched, and the persons or things to be seized.”

    I wonder if legally requiring someone with no criminal record to purchase a safe that’s tapped by the police qualifies as an “unreasonable search”? Nah, nothing’s unreasonable in Massachusetts!

  8. If I was a career criminal, Lowell MA would effectivly be my new top place to plan to visit, when and if this new law goes into effect, like planning a vacation….

  9. “… but said law-enforcement officials must make sure there are strong protections in place so that criminals are unable to access any gun database the city would create”.
    — Does that criminal list include local, state, and federal government agencies?

    “A law that what, allows the cops to come in and count the number of guns in your possession?”
    — With the way things are going in America there probably won’t be police budgets for it.

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