SPRINGFIELD, Ill. (WMBD) — LaSalle County Sheriff Adam C. Diss and Knox County Sheriff Jack C. Harlan, Jr. announced that they do not plan to enforce the newly enacted assault weapons ban, according to identical letters released Wednesday.
The Protect Illinois Communities Act was passed through the General Assembly and signed into law by Gov. JB Pritzker this week. It halts the sale of assault weapons in the state of Illinois and requires owners of such weapons to register them with local law enforcement.
Sheriffs Diss and Harlan have indicated that they will not enforce the law. Below is the text of the letters sent from their offices.
As your sheriff, I wanted to give citizens of [LaSalle/Knox] County an update on the recent passage of HB 5471, also known as the Protect Illinois Communities Act.Sheriffs Adam C. Diss and Jack C. Harlan, Jr.
As your duly elected sheriff my job and my office are sworn, in fact, to protect the citizens of [LaSalle/Knox] County. This is a job and responsibility that I take with the utmost seriousness.
Part of my duties that I accepted upon being sworn into office was to protect the rights provided to all of us, in the Constitution. One of those enumerated rights is the right of the people to keep and bear arms provided under the 2nd amendment.
The right to keep and bear arms for defense of life, liberty and property is regarded as an inalienable right by the people.
I, among many others, believe that HB 5471 is a clear violation of the 2nd Amendment to the US Constitution.
Therefore, as a Custodian of the Jail and Chief Law Enforcement Official for [LaSalle/Knox] County, that neither myself nor my office will be checking to ensure that lawful gun owners register their weapons with the state, nor will we be arresting or housing law abiding individuals that have been arrested solely with non-compliance with this act.
Sheriffs from Fulton, Winnebago, Stephenson, Ogle, Iroquois, Lee, Iroquois, Piatt DeWitt, Logan and McDonough counties have put out this letter as well.
Gov. JB Pritzker said in his bill-signing press conference that all Illinoisans will be required to follow the law and that there will be no option for non-compliance.