Sheriff says he wouldn't enforce new gun laws - Dallas News |

Sheriff says he wouldn't enforce new gun laws

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McKINNEY, Texas -

The Collin County sheriff is making national headlines. He says he and his deputies will not enforce any new gun laws that they believe will violate the Second Amendment.

"Neither I, nor any of my deputies will participate in the enforcement of laws that violate our precious constitutional rights," said Sheriff Terry Box.

Box said he's not against President Barack Obama's proposals to curb gun violence, which includes an assault weapons ban and a limit on magazine capacity. But he does take issue with talk of new laws restricting gun ownership.

"If they want to put the Clinton ban back on assault weapons, put it back in," Box said. "I'm more concerned about the laws, new laws being passed that either register, confiscate or stop from purchasing weapons."

Former United States Attorney Richard Roper said Box is charged with upholding state law, but not necessarily federal law.

"I think he's just essentially staking out his territory," he said. "He's within his discretion and can decide to help the feds or may not help the feds. That's really up to him."

But Roper said Box can't necessarily stop federal charges from being filed against a Collin County resident. In fact, that would be considered interfering with a federal investigation.

Still, Box said he'd use whatever power he has to keep federal agents from enforcing new gun laws he believes to be unconstitutional.

"I would have the right to write a letter to the federal authorities saying I want those authorities removed from Collin County. If not I'll take legal action and get them removed from Collin County," he said.

So far he said the overwhelming response has been positive. But, there is some concern among the people he serves that he's going too far.

"I don't know that it's the sheriff's place to make that decision as to what pushes the envelope or not. I think that's a court's decision," said Margaret Harch.

"It could be starting a bad precedent," added Joanne Duran. "But I don't oppose him voicing his opinion."


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