A Day After Boulder Tragedy, Gun Safety Legislation Advances

Previously scheduled hearing on Lost & Stolen Bill moves forward

DENVER, CO– The House Judiciary Committee today advanced Representative Tom Sullivan and Leslie Herod’s bill to prevent firearms from getting into the wrong hands by requiring responsible gun owners to report to law enforcement when they realize their firearms have been lost or stolen. The committee hearing, scheduled weeks ago after the legislation had moved through the Senate, comes a day after a tragic mass shooting that took the lives of 10 people in Boulder, Colorado. The bill passed by a party line vote of 7-4.

“This bill is about as commonsense and straightforward as gun safety legislation gets,” said Rep. Tom Sullivan, D-Centennial. “By simply requiring that responsible gun owners alert law enforcement when a firearm may have made its way into the hands of a criminal, we truly can save lives. This piece of legislation is overwhelmingly supported by our constituents. 87 percent of Coloradans are in favor of reporting lost and stolen firearms — that includes 81 percent of Republicans and 86 percent of gun owners. This shouldn’t be a Democratic or Republican issue. It’s a life and death issue.” 

“Reporting lost and stolen firearms to law enforcement is a simple way to prevent crime and save lives,” said Rep. Leslie Herod, D-Denver. “As we are tragically reminded of today, gun violence is a plague that we must work to end in Colorado and in our country. While gut wrenching mass shootings like the one that took place near my alma mater yesterday make headlines and capture the nation’s attention, everyday instances of gun violence quietly take lives in our communities every single day. That’s what this bill seeks to remedy. I refuse to offer victims of gun violence only thoughts and prayers. I offer them my action.” 

SB21-078 requires an individual who owns a firearm and has reasonable cause to believe that the firearm has been lost or stolen to report that firearm to a law enforcement agency within five days after discovering that the firearm is missing. A first offense for failure to make such a report is a civil infraction punishable by a $25 fine, and a second or subsequent offense is a misdemeanor punishable by a maximum $500 fine. The bill requires a law enforcement agency that receives a report to enter information about the lost or stolen firearm into the National Crime Information Center database and report the information to the Colorado Bureau of Investigation.