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IMMINENT WARNING: POTENTIAL FOR UNREST AFTER CONNECTICUT PASSES NEW GUN CONTROL LAW

October 1, 2023

Magdalena Breyer, Ignacio Minuesa, Hae Lim Park, Victoria Valová, Martina Pagani

Alya Fathia Fitri, Editor; Evan Beachler, Senior Editor


Location Of State Of Connecticut In The United States[1]


Event: Connecticut’s most sweeping gun control law since the 2013 Sandy Hook Elementary shooting, entitled "An Act Addressing Gun Violence" (House Bill 6667), took effect on October 1, 2023. This new law prohibits the open carrying of firearms and the sale of more than three handguns within 30 days to an individual, with few exceptions. The new law increases bail, probation, and parole for people with serious gun offenses. It expands Connecticut’s assault weapons bans, heightens penalties for possession of large-capacity magazines, expands safe-storage rules, and adds some domestic violence crimes as disqualifications for having a gun. After its approval on May 25, 2023, gun rights supporters challenged the law in court.[2] About 150 gun rights activists rallied outside the state Capitol on September 30, 2023, to mark Connecticut's last legal day to carry visible firearms.[3]


Significance: The new legislation is very likely gathering nationwide attention for the significance of Connecticut and Sandy Hook in national debates about gun regulations over the past decade. Far-right individuals and groups in Connecticut and across the US will likely use the momentous nature of the regulation to recruit new members to their cause and motivate violent action. They will likely continue protesting the law through demonstrations and rebelling against its regulations, likely pushing back against authorities by continuing to carry their guns in Connecticut openly. Individuals openly carrying will likely act as agitators, testing the extent of the law’s reinforcement by local and state police. There is a roughly even chance that these acts will lead to violent confrontations with law enforcement. They will likely recirculate Sandy Hook conspiracies online to reach broader audiences and further delegitimize the regulation. The law likely strengthens the relations between far-right groups across New England as residents of Connecticut will likely need to obtain their guns from out-of-state sources.


Recommendations

  • Law enforcement should increase their presence in locations like courthouses, the state Capitol, and properties of government officials involved in the law's passage for potential gatherings, rallies, and protests by gun supporters and activists.

  • CTG recommends that individuals avoid government buildings and officials' properties for potential gatherings, rallies, and protests by gun supporters and activists.

  • CTG recommends law enforcement monitor social media closely for any planned gatherings of gun supporters and activists, particularly from far-right groups, including “We the Patriots USA,” who filed a lawsuit against the bill.

  • CTG recommends that law enforcement monitor any increase in travel to Connecticut by gun supporters and activists for gatherings, rallies, and protests.

  • If there is any additional and or critical information, please contact us at The Counterterrorism Group (CTG) by Telephone at 202-643-2848 or email info@counterterrorismgroup.com.

 

[2] Connecticut House passes most wide-ranging gun bill since legislation passed after Sandy Hook, AP, May 2023, https://apnews.com/article/connecticut-gun-control-bill-vote-sandy-hook-393d213e065c33ff13172e6ee2550998

[3] Connecticut enacts its most sweeping gun control law since the Sandy Hook shooting, AP, October 2023, https://apnews.com/article/connecticut-gun-control-law-sandy-hook-3b92ea0755863f2b2d32a45948eb6a70

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