CHAMPAIGN, Ill. (WCIA) — As sheriffs around the state are sharing their statements on the assault weapons law, the Champaign County Sheriff’s Office is providing more details around their response to the law.
“Regardless of my personal beliefs as a firearm owner, I don’t believe it’s the role of a Sheriff to arbitrarily decide what law is or isn’t Constitutional. That is the job of our judicial system. That sets a dangerous precedent to enforce laws based solely on personal opinion of them. The Sheriff’s Office will continue to use the Illinois Compiled Statutes as a guide when determining the need for enforcement action of any law unless the Courts find that law unconstitutional. With that said, I have no intentions of limiting the discretion of my deputies with enforcing this specific law, just as I don’t limit their discretion when enforcing with any other law when they are in the best position to evaluate the totality of circumstances of an incident. My deputies will not be going door to door searching for violations of this law. As Sheriff, my goal continues to be to get guns out of the hands of people who want to use them maliciously so we can increase the safety of all of us who live here.”Champaign Co. Sheriff Dustin Heuerman
The portion of the law affecting Illinoisans to register their guns will not go into effect until 2024. Heuerman’s statement contrasts with dozens of sheriffs across the state who said they won’t enforce the new law. Other sheriffs also said they will not hold anybody in their jails who are arrested for violating Illinois’ new assault weapon ban when those measures go into effect next year.
Illinois’ new law does not require law enforcement to go door to door and check for unregistered assault weapons.