An Easton Police Department employee reported seeing a steady stream of residents coming to the station for thumbprints, while trying to meet the deadline for registering firearms and ammunition magazines that will be considered illegal contraband in the New Year.
Applications for certificates are available online, but the thumbprints are also needed.
A Certificate of Possession must be obtained prior to January 1, 2014, according to the Department of Emergency Services and Public Protection website. The only exceptions are for someone who has been living out of state serving in the military prior to October 1994, "or a person who receives an assault weapon through bequeath or intestate succession providing the weapon already had a certificate. In these instances, the person has 90 days to register the weapon with the Special Licensing and Firearms Unit."
The new requirement is due to Public Act 13-3: An Act Concerning Gun Violence Prevention and Children’s Safety.
Any newly defined assault weapon that was lawfully purchased on or before April 4, 2013, but was not transferred by that date, may be transferred pursuant to such lawful purchase and a sales authorization number may be obtained for such transfer. Sellers are required to verify that a lawful purchase occurred on or before April 4, 2013 prior to transferring such firearm.
Proof of lawful possession will also be required by DESPP from the owner of the firearm with the Application for Certificate of Possession of Assault Weapon.
According to the State website, "Law enforcement and military personnel may possess Assault Weapons in connection with their official duties, and any person who has a Certificate of Possession issued by the Special Licensing and Firearms Unit may possess the Assault Weapon listed on their certificate.
For a list of assault weapons, click on this link.