WXXI Local Stories
Thu April 18, 2013
County Clerks Take Issue With Interpretation of SAFE Act
Monroe County Clerk Cheryl Dinolfo was joined by her counterparts from Livingston, Wayne and Ontario Counties on Wednesday in questioning the recent interpretation of the state's new gun laws, known as the New York SAFE Act.
The debate centers on the recent case of an Erie County man whose guns were confiscated by authorities under the law's mental health provisions. It turns out that David Lewis was the victim of mistaken identity. Police returned Lewis' weapons on Monday, saying that they should have been targeting another David Lewis.
The county clerks say a recent article in the Buffalo News quoted a high ranking state official who claimed that "the county clerk is responsible to carry out an investigation to determine if an individual is a threat to himself or others and should be denied access to guns under the law's mental health provisions."
Dinolfo says she and the other county clerks take issue with these claims. In a statement, she said "The New York SAFE Act clearly states that it is the responsibility of the State to conduct the investigation to make this confirmation. The State passed this new law and they need to make sure they are identifying the right individuals before they request that the pistol permit be revoked or suspended."