Authorities in Massachusetts mailed a notice to all individuals holding firearms licenses and firearms identification cards on Jan. 12 warning of the new state law making possession of a “bump stock” or “trigger crank” subject to criminal prosecution.
Sale or transfer of those accessories was prohibited immediately after passage of the law right after the Las Vegas massacre of concert goers, but mere possession became strictly prohibited effective Feb. 1, 2018.
The notification letter states that since the law does not allow for transfer or sale of the prohibited items, anyone in possession in the Commonwealth is advised to contact their local police department or the State Police to obtain details on the method of transfer for destruction.
The law defines a “bump stock” as any device for a weapon that increases the rate of fire achievable with such weapon by using energy from the recoil to generate a reciprocating action that facilitates repeated activation of the trigger.
And it defines “trigger crank” as any device to be attached to the weapon that repeatedly activates the trigger through the use of a lever or other part that is turned in a circular motion, but does not include any weapon initially designed or manufactured to fire through the use of such a crank or lever.
The warning letter was issued by the Executive Office of Public Safety and Security and was widely distributed since no one knows how many of the suddenly banned accessories were in private possession prior to passage of the new law. The latter ends with the warning that retention of such a prohibited item beyond the 90 day grace period will expose the owner to criminal prosecution.