OKLAHOMA COUNTY, Okla. (KFOR) – A new rule from the Department of Justice is causing quite the stir here in the sooner state. It stems from an announcement almost two weeks ago about stabilizing braces on pistols. Two sheriff’s offices in the metro have gone on record speaking out against it and said they won’t enforce it.
The announcement from the DOJ said the rule does not ban the use of stabilizing braces on pistols or the braces at all. But the Oklahoma and Logan County Sheriff’s Offices are speaking out on it.
“If a deputy encounters someone with a pistol equipped with a stabilizing brace, they will take no action against that person,” said Oklahoma County Sheriff Tommie Johnson III.
The announcement was made January 13. It said when someone uses “stabilizing braces to convert pistols to rifles with a barrel less than 16 inches … they must comply with laws that regulate those rifles, including the national firearms act.”
“According to Oklahoma state statute local law enforcement personnel cannot enforce a rule established by the DOJ,” Johnson said.
KFOR was told that statement above from Johnson was referring to the Second Amendment Sanctuary State Act, which was passed by Oklahoma lawmakers and signed into law in 2021.
The Logan County Sheriff’s Office joined him by releasing a letter this week stating, “we will not enforce any ‘rule’ established by the department of justice that violates a citizen’s right.”
“I will not allow my deputies to participate in any enforcement action or confiscation,” Johnson said.
In the announcement the DOJ said they have put requirements on short barreled rifles since the 1930’s because “they are more easily concealable than long-barreled rifles but have more destructive power than traditional handguns.” But Johnson and Logan County Sheriff Damon Devereaux said they will only act if the weapon is used while committing a crime.
“That person will be arrested and prosecuted as allowable by state and federal law,” Johnson said.
The announcement allows manufacturers, dealers and people about 4 months to register tax-free any short barreled rifles covered by the rule. They give other options as well like taking the brace off the pistol, or turning in their covered short barreled rifle to the ATF.