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Albany County Sheriff knocks SAFE Act

Local authorities see benefits and downsides to new gun control law

— Apple and Heider said some sections of the law are based on good faith, such as limiting magazines to holding seven rounds, and police likely wouldn’t ever discover those violations unless investigating another charge.

“To take a 10-round magazine and tell people to only put seven rounds in it, come on,” Apple said.

The act also strengthened penalties for crimes like possessing an unloaded illegal gun. Apple suggested penalties for carrying an illegal gun be even tougher, with a mandatory five-year sentence.

Heider said the proliferation of illegal weapons has only increased gun violence because people who want to do bad things can more easily obtain a weapon.

“The unfortunate part is that there are just so many guns available for people that want to do something bad with them and unfortunately, this law does not address that,” Heider said.

In the hilltowns of Albany County, guns aren’t a large concern for law enforcement, Apple said. During the past decade there have been two murders in the hilltowns, with the weapons of choice being a bungee cord in one and cutlery in the other.

“Bad people are always going to do bad things,” Apple said.

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