While El Paso County Sheriff Terry Maketa said he’s going to stand firm against new gun laws, Colorado Springs Police Chief Pete Carey is taking a different approach.
“The Colorado Springs Police Department will treat these new laws as it does every other law – we will enforce them,” Carey said in an email to The Gazette. “Having said that, some of these laws may be difficult to investigate and enforce.”
The newspaper asked Carey to weigh in on three gun bills that Gov. John Hickenlooper signed into law Wednesday.
The new laws limit ammunition magazines to 15 rounds, require universal background checks, and require gun buyers to pay for background checks.
Though Carey didn’t elaborate on why they might be difficult to investigate and enforce, he said there’s room for improvement in keeping guns out of the hands of people with mental health issues.
“A common theme in many homicides involving weapons is that there are indicators that the criminal exhibited some sign of instability or volatility prior to the tragic event,” he said. “As a community, we need to do a better job of ensuring that mental health professionals, school officials, co-workers, family and friends report suspicious or unreasonable behavior.”
Carey also said he recently reached out to local school superintendents and invited them to a meeting in the next month.
The purpose of the meeting is “to have a common sense discussion about school safety and critical incident response and how we can be better partners during these events,” he said.
“My hope is that area law enforcement agencies will begin to take steps that enable a more consistent, effective response to incidents at schools and other public places where large groups of people collect,” he said.