Do You Own a Legal Suppressed Air Rifle in New Jersey? No You Don’t

The following originally appeared at and is reprinted here with permission:

Do you possess a common Air Rifle, such as the Gamo Whisper .177, .22, DX models or something substantially similar? Does your common Air Rifle incorporate noise reduction paraphernalia? If yes, then you are now in possession of a banned assault weapon according to a recent decision by the New Jersey State Police! The New Jersey Second Amendment Society recently obtained a copy of the letter from Lieutenant Joseph Genova, head of the Firearms Investigation Unit (FIU) of the New Jersey Division of State Police, that was sent to NJ firearms retailers regarding the legality of air rifles with internal or barrel mounted baffles designed to reduce noise.  In this letter dated August 23, 2013, Lt. Genova makes reference to both air rifles being considered firearms under NJ statute, and that any form of “firearm silencer” is illegal in NJ. A photograph of the letter can be viewed here . . .
For the purposes of enforcing New Jersey’s firearms statutes, air and spring-loaded rifles have long been considered firearms. According to this recent letter, any Air Rifles which incorporate noise reduction paraphernalia (specifically the Gamo Whisper .177, .22, DX models and those which are substantially similar) are now considered illegal due to the noise reduction capability.

This situation has come to light as a result of questions regarding air rifles that are legal to use for hunting squirrel and rabbit in New Jersey. 2013 marks the first year the NJ Division of Fish And Game are allowing air rifles to be used for hunting. Prior to this letter dated August 23, 2013,  Gamo and other brand air rifles with internal noise dampening devices have been sold to law-abiding NJ gun owners for hunting and recreational shooting purposes.

The New Jersey Second Amendment Society (NJ2AS) finds the position by the New Jersey State Police, Firearms Investigation Unit, an unnecessary overreach that more than likely originated in the Attorney General’s office. A reasonable person would understand that the noise reduction capability of these devices is not incorporated for any nefarious purpose, but rather to enhance the user’s experience. This is why NJ2AS finds the interpretation of the State Police Firearms Investigation Unit is flawed and wholly objectionable.

What can you do? While we believe it is our responsibility to alert you and to mobilize a coordinated reaction to this interpretation of the statutes, we need your help. We encourage you to contact Governor Christie, the Attorney General and Lieutenant Genova to express your opposition to the interpretation of these statutes.

NJ2AS is always here, working in favor of legislation of our inalienable right to keep and bear arms in  NJ. The only way to change the current environment and the attacks on the rights of hunters and firearms owners is to work together and replace as many current NJ Legislators as we can with candidates who respect the Constitution, and who believe in and support individual principles of Liberty and Responsibility. Right at this moment, we have both an opportunity to elect Steve Lonegan, a Constitutional candidate into the United States Senate from New Jersey. This would be a game changer for the entire Nation. Visit our website for opportunities to help Steven Lonegan win the Senate seat at:

Meanwhile, in New Jersey Legislative District 3, we can replace gun-grabber Steve Sweeney with Constitutional Conservative Niki Trunk. There are other districts where we can have an effect as well. Consider signing up for the NJ2AS Knock for Niki Event by clicking here.

None of this will happen without your help. Many New Jersey hunters have been saying that the legislature will not interfere with their guns. While this recent move may not seem like much of an incursion, neither did any of the OTHER legislation that whittled away gun ownership rights over the last several decades. The time to stop this kind of thinking dead in it tracks is NOW!


  1. avatar AlphaGeek says:

    People say we have it bad here in CA, but frankly, I think NJ is far worse.

    I own a Gamo Whisper .177, and this is just ridiculous. Even firing supersonic pellets the current generation of high-powered air rifles isn’t exactly loud to start with. Pretty sure nobody is carrying out gangster hits with a “suppressed” .177.

    1. avatar SdubM45 says:

      My Father’s Brother’s Cousin’s former roommate makes 10K a head hunting down spammers on the internet and burying them in the Mojave Desert. He has been an unemployed crackhead for five years, but lat month he made $60,000. True story.

      1. avatar William Burke says:

        I’ve got some spare time. Does he need any help? I’ll work for cheap; it’s a labor of “love”.

  2. avatar Neal Williams says:

    Fudd’s saying that something won’t affect them. Business as usual. You mean, banning air rifles commonly used for hunting small game and pest control won’t affect you? Really.

    Fudd’s are a perpetual wart on the ass of Gun Enthusiasts. Every time a hunting group doesn’t put up opposition to gun laws, I’m going to sponsor a anti-hunting group or lawmaker.

  3. avatar William Burke says:

    Is it OK if you yell “BANG!” at the top of your lungs when you pull the trigger?

    1. avatar In Memphis says:

      If finger guns are bad in school, I reckon making gun noises are too.

    2. avatar Hasdrubal says:

      Yes, but if you only say BANG instead of yelling, it’s a misdemeanor crime. If you have something in front of your mouth, like a scarf, it’s a felony.

      1. avatar Russ Bixby says:


      2. avatar donny77 says:

        Worse, Failure to say bang while you finger gun motion means your finger gun incorporates noise reduction technology. Your hand is an illegal assault weapon.

    3. avatar TheDabbo says:

      Shouting is probably ok, but whispering “bang” is probably a big no in NJ.

  4. avatar Andrew says:

    Oh my god. The stupid – it is so big.

  5. avatar Russ Bixby says:


    They’re burning the U.S. at both ends.

    1. avatar Michigunner says:

      Yes, this is true. But, we all know what happens when you burn the candle at both ends. Inevitably, you get burned.

  6. avatar Ralph says:

    I could be wrong, but it seems to me that squirrels and rabbits have a better lobby than New Jersey gun owners. Better representation, too.

    1. avatar Mlopilato says:

      You’re confusing squirrels and rabbits with rats.

    2. avatar Hasdrubal says:

      This idea has probably been had by many people independently, but a friend used to complain about what he called “fuzzy kitten” laws. Come up with whatever kind of crazy nonsense you want, and give it a name like the “fuzzy kitten bill.” Then get on the news and say, “I can’t believe my opponent is so heartless and cruel that they would vote against fuzzy kittens.”

      I think that’s how the Patriot Act was passed…

      but back to the point, squirrels and rabbits are fuzzy too.

      1. avatar Russ Bixby says:

        We gun nuts also hate, loathe and detest children, ice cream and puppies. Just ask anyone.

        1. avatar Ralph says:

          But I like ice cream and puppies. Just not on the same plate.

        2. avatar William Burke says:

          Puppy-fried ice cream?

        3. avatar C says:

          All of those things are delicious though!

  7. avatar Soccerchainsaw says:

    If you haven’t figured it out before, this isn’t about public safety. This is about inconveniencing people that enjoy an “unacceptable” hobby. Oh, and ‘catching’ us breaking some wierd little law of which we weren’t aware because you know ignorance of the law is no excuse….

  8. avatar Russ Bixby says:

    “The time to stop this kind of thinking dead in it tracks is NOW!”

    The time to stop that kind of “thinking” dead in it (sic) tracks was more than a century ago.

  9. avatar CA.Ben says:

    I would like them to cite ONE instance of someone using a suppressed air rifle to intentionally shoot someone.

    The stupid, it hurts so bad.

  10. avatar user3369 says:

    Guys .Seriously?

    An air rifle is not a “firearm”. Therefore, any sound reducing apparatus is not a “firearm suppressor”.

    You’re good. Just because the state of NJ are functioning morons does not mean they get to redefine what a “firearm” is.

    1. avatar Russ Bixby says:

      Neither does the Constitution specify firearms — just arms, presumably those suited to battle.

      Classified as a firearm simply means that it falls under the same rules and regulations,

      Apparently N.J. has its own rules about suppressors, because BATF only includes certain very powerful air weapons to be under their purview and generally does not care about suppression of anything outside its jurisdiction.

      So… Grabbers. ‘Nuff said.

      1. avatar William Burke says:

        They’re “morons”, are they? Who lost their right to air guns, the state of New Jersey, or the people?

        They LOVE it when you dismiss them as “incompetent” and “morons”; that’s how they’ve gotten this far.

        1. avatar Russ Bixby says:

          What I’ve unsuccessfully argued for quite some time.

          To disrespect the strengths of the enemy increases ones vulnerability to — and disrespects the victims of — that enemy.

        2. avatar William Burke says:

          Very well put. I’m copying that into my iPhone’s note pad. That’s INSPIRATIONAL, Russ!

          I’m serious. It sorta reminds me of Sun Tzu.

        3. avatar Allen Smith says:

          The art of war is of fundemtal importance to the state.


        4. avatar Out_Fang_Thief says:

          Never attribute to stupidity, that which is adequately explained by malice.
          That of course, is rozar s’nolnaH.

        5. avatar Accur81 says:


          (That was supposed to be a reply to out fang thief. Not sure what happened.)

  11. avatar Gs650g says:

    Because banning quiet air guns will lower crime in Newark and Camden a great deal. All those dirtbags walking the streets with air rifles have to be stopped and this law will do it.
    NJ is comic relief.

  12. avatar jwm says:

    Never been to New Jersy. Doesn’t seem like I missed much. If God was to give an enema to America, would he insert the nozzle into New Jersy?

  13. avatar Jeff says:

    who fucking cares.

    break the law.

  14. avatar Cubby123 says:

    Let’s take a Libatard poll of all the gang bangers and muderers and criminals with guns and the repeat offenders New Jersey and the the rest these anti gun states keep letting out of jail,and see what they think.Maybe they will agree with the law and turn in their silenced .177’s and 22s as well as the rest of their illegal guns so they can get a coupon for Walmart.That will PROVE once and for all that theses law enforcement and political tactics REALLY do work and the Gun Murder Rate should simply STOP since their unconstitutional ,I mean good ideas ,are SOOO effective.
    Let’s give these guys a big round of applause,common who’s with me!

  15. avatar AW1Ed says:

    A suppressed Gamo is now on my “to buy” list.

  16. avatar jus Bill says:

    Just watch – Lt. Genova will be after AirSoft next. This damfoolishness makes me grateful I live in Merryland, and that’s saying something.

    1. avatar Alex Boshnack says:

      Airsoft is considered a BB gun in NJ, and thus under the same rules as any other firearms. Airsoft is basically illegal in NJ.

      1. avatar ReadDude says:

        I can say with first hand experience you are misinformed.

        There are many stores selling Airsoft on the shelves while not checking of FPID (you just need to be 18 years old).

        I understand that the law is undecided (e.g., no legal cases explicitly saying that airsoft is or is not a firearm), but in practice they are not regulated at the same level as BB/Pellet guns.

        In NJ, you need to show a FPID to purchase an airgun. There is also explicit legal precedents to show that NJ Fire-arms law does apply.

        There is an interesting twist here, I sat on a jury pool (didn’t get picked) for a case where a motorist used an airsoft pistol with the red tip blackened to threaten another motorist. He was convicted of weapons offenses, but only the fact that he used the gun to “simulate” an actual gun and therefore the fact that is was airsoft was immaterial. He could have used a painted block of wood fashioned to look like a pistol and gotten the same conviction.

        1. avatar gs650g says:

          Or his index finger. Make damn sure you use the middle finger or it could be a weapons offense.

  17. avatar dwb says:

    I honestly cannot say what i find sillier: having noise suppression on an air rifle, or banning it. Although, this is NJ we are talking about where everything is supposed to be loud, maybe what they really mean is that every rifle should have a device that says “fu*& you co*&sucker” when you pull the trigger.

  18. avatar Out_Fang_Thief says:

    Obviously, they’re going after the children’s guns for….for….the sake of the children!
    Make no mistake, these BB guns are gateway’s to harder guns, with bigger calibers,
    and bigger bangs, and in some cases, it even leads to gun addiction. Please help!


  19. avatar Bob7 says:

    Hmm, makes you wonder if they will go after paintball guns next.

    1. avatar William Burke says:

      Airsoft. Paintball and CO2 cartridges next, then spitballs, and TOMORROW THE WORLD!!

    2. avatar Have Blue says:

      You mean go after paintball guns _again_. Prior to 1988, paintball was illegal in NJ:

      Airsoft is continually targeted with legislation introduced pretty much each year to classify airsoft guns as firearms:

      1. avatar William Burke says:

        Airsoft guns can be deadly. If you’re a fly.

  20. avatar Allen Smith says:

    NJ that’s what they all get for voting D with the exception of that Fat F-ck Governor Chris Christtey.


  21. avatar Hannibal says:

    “A reasonable person would understand that the noise reduction capability of these devices is not incorporated for any nefarious purpose, but rather to enhance the user’s experience. ”

    Yeah… but that’s true of silencers in general.

    1. avatar gs650g says:

      Yep having a quieter gun is a promise of ill intent. Maybe knives and bats should be noisier.

  22. avatar William Burke says:

    Hey. I asked first. Well, maybe not. I’ll be your assistant.

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