Bump Stocks Under Federal Investigation

Federal regulators launched a review of federal law to determine if certain bump stock devices fall within the definition of “machine gun,” according to Tuesday’s release by the Justice Department.

“Possessing firearm parts that are used exclusively in converting a weapon into a machine gun is illegal, except for certain limited circumstances,” Attorney General Jeff Sessions said. “Today we begin the process of determining whether or not bump stocks are covered by this prohibition.”

Sessions explained the Justice Department will follow the regulatory process required by law, which includes opening a public commenting period. A draft of proposed changes filed by the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives will soon be open for public comment.

Bump stocks — devices designed to allow an AR-style rifle to mimic the performance of a machine gun — became the subject of debate after a gunman used the device to kill 58 people and injured some 500 others by shooting out of a hotel window at a concert off the Las Vegas strip on Oct. 1. Authorities investigating the incident said the gunman was able to shoot 1,100 rounds in 10 minutes using the device.

Although current federal law strictly regulates the possession and transfer of machine guns, it does not prohibit bump stocks. Lawmakers on both sides of the aisle agreed that the device circumvents the law and filed bills to change it, but federal efforts seemed to fizzle after a month and more mass shootings. Yet, several areas of the country have either passed or advanced bills to prohibit bump stocks.

The Justice Department’s effort mirrors comments by the National Rifle Association, which criticized the ATF for not classifying the device as a machine gun and suggested the agency should take another crack at reviewing it rather than Congress passing legislation. Former ATF agents and representatives said they couldn’t classify the device as a prohibited item because the law did not permit them to.

The ATF classified the bump stock devices as accessories rather than a machine gun device in 2010, after manufacturer Slide Fire voluntarily submitted the product for review. Officials said they cleared the device because it “performs no automatic mechanical function when installed” and the shooter must still apply “constant” forward and rearward pressure to the trigger. Years before, other companies with similar devices had been denied due to different construction.

Gun control advocates say the marching orders for federal regulators to take a second look at the devices is cause for concern and warn that a legislative fix could be more appropriate, especially when it comes to a ban.

“Congress should take proper action to cement into law the ability to restrict bump stocks and stop them from being transferred to the wrong hands,” said David Chapman, a former ATF agent now an adviser with Giffords. “As part of any legislation, Congress must also give the ATF clear authority to restrict these devices.”

source: guns.com

  • James Clooney

    the DOJ has joined Bloomberg wanting to do away with the 2nd amendment

    • Charles McNulty

      They must be wanting a civil war.

  • Alan404

    What is the LEGAL definition of MACHINEGUN anyway, and does it have any real relationship to what a machinegun actually is?

    • Joe704

      BATF actually stands for “Bureau of Arbitrary Technical Findings”. A drop-in auto sear for an AR-15 is a machine gun if made after a certain date; every part of a silencer (including the rubber “wipe”) is itself called a silencer; and the Streetsweeper 12-GA shotgun was later classified as a Destructive Device.

      • Alan404


    • Speedy121

      I think the Giffords have paid off Google to show ‘ Their Definition’ as the first search item.

      Machine Guns & 50-Caliber | Giffords Law Center to Prevent Gun …

    • Speedy121

      But as per Federal Law:

      Federal law strictly regulates machine guns (firearms that fire many rounds of ammunition, without manual reloading, with a single pull of the trigger).


      and then there is the ATF:

      26 U.S.C. § 5845(b)

      For the purposes of the National Firearms Act the term Machinegun means:

      Any weapon which shoots, is designed to shoot, or can be readily restored to shoot, automatically more than one shot without manual reloading, by a single function of the trigger

      The frame or receiver of any such weapon

      Any part designed and intended solely and exclusively or combination of parts designed and intended for use in converting a weapon into a machinegun, or

      Any combination of parts from which a machinegun can be assembled if such parts are in the possession or under the control of a person.
      Images of various machine guns including, Thompson model 1921, Ingram MAC-10, UZI, Steyr-AUG, Colt M16, and HK-MP-5

      Note: Due to the similarity in appearance and general configuration of semiautomatic firearms, a comprehensive examination of the firearm and/or its component parts is required to correctly determine its classification.


      • Alan404

        Re this Binary Trigger:

        If it is what I think it is,it works as follows.Pull Trigger fires one shot.Push Trigger, fires another shot.Two shots,two operations of trigger, which sounds like semi-automatic, not machine gun, not selective fire weapon either.

      • Alan404

        Re definitions, a Bump Stock is about as far removed from machine gun or automatic weapon as can be and still remain on earth, it would so seem.

        • Speedy121

          I agree.

    • Speedy121

      I would suggest that a Binary Trigger may be sitting on the line of that Definition.
      (i.e. two bullets with one pull of the trigger)

  • Paul Ronn

    Why would anyone want a bump stock anyway. Outlaw the stupid things.

    • Speedy121

      For the same reason anyone would want to shoot paintballs, FOR FUN.

      • Tom

        Paint balls don’t kill.

        • Speedy121

          I once worked with a Mechanic who had lost his left eye-ball in a paintball game. A Paintball can cause a serious injury without death.
          But you could slip on Ice and hit your head, which may or may Not kill you.
          Why would anyone want to hit a golfball for 4 hours ?

          The 10 Worst Ways To Die On A Golf Course

          A Few years ago, a CBS-TV anchor died snowmobiling. It was not the snowmobile that killed him, it was his Buddy’s Drunken behavior.
          (Hirschey was spared prison time after he crashed into a tree about 11:30 p.m. Jan. 24, 2008, while riding along Plum Lake near Sayner, Wisconsin.

          The crash killed Scott D. Hirschey’s childhood friend and passenger, Randy Salerno, who reported and anchored for 11 years at WGN before moving in 2004 to CBS WBBM to co-host the station’s morning news broadcast.)

          Do NOT Blame the TOOLS when the Behavior is the Cause !

          • Tom

            I have never been in a paint ball shootout, but I thought that you had to wear safety gear (protective headgrar, goggles or plastic glasses), so if this guy didn’t have on protective gear, then as crass as it might sound, his injury was his fault and no one elses.

          • myfordtruck

            the safety gear is required if you are on a approved paintball battle field if you and your friends are doing it on private property there is no rules and if you have never been hit with a paint ball from a souped up gun you have no ideal how much it hurts

          • Tom

            Well then the answer is simple if your not going to follow the rules, not to get hurt, then don’t be in an unsanctioned paint ball game. That’s just like playing fullout football without a helmet or pads, if you get hurt, your on your own and should have no gripe coming to you. And if your going to play with souped up (paint ball guns)weapons then why not go full out and just use real guns, come on , you need to use a little common sense. When playing with weapons that can cause real permanent damage. This argument is getting way out of hand, so I have nothing more to say on this subject.

    • Tom

      Paul Ronn, I agree, the bump stock might be a fun thing to have, but it is not accurate (just like an automatic is not accurate), so I don’t really see any use for them. I realize it might make a few people mad to outlaw them, but I would rather see them go than to loose our 2nd Amendment rights, I have a concealed weapon permit and have carried for more than 17 years, and even though I have never had brandish my weapon, I have felt safe just having it with me, and I would hate to loose my right to carry because of some stupid bump stock, that I would never buy anyway.

  • gunnygil

    BATFE is the culprit in this “accessory” as they called it when it was developed 8 years ago. Since it is not actually a firearm they decided not to ban the device.
    Again a government organization designed to monitor business and technology for protection of our citizenry has failed and is at fault, in my mind, for the slaughter in Vegas, and many other such incidents of lessor degree.
    Just as failure of LEOs, the Courts, and the DOD to report incidents on persons to the FBI’s National Crime index Computer (NCIC) was and is responsible for the ease of criminals to gain easy access to weapons they could NOT have obtained legally to commit their crimes.
    There is no reason for anyone to have a “Bump Stock”, even the military could have little use for such a device and it should be confiscated and the manufacturers should be fined heavily for development of such a device designed solely for only mass slaughter and to by pass the laws on the books since the 1930’s on automatic weapons.
    I am not an anti-second amendment advocate as I am a weapons owner, a combat veteran, and CWC permitted citizen but this device is, or should be deemed illegal.

  • myfordtruck

    the bump stock is made for people who cannot afford fully auto guns and the expense of permits and insurance. The bump stock is made for playing with for short times because most of the store bought AR type guns will not hold up to firing a 1000 rounds at a time without a major failure besides that if you have the mags. loaded you can pray and spray that many rounds just pulling the trigger so in the bump stock is just something to play with and for further info I do not own A AR type rifle or even shot one I am A Ak & SKS person myself

  • HeadShot

    Re definitions, a Bump Stock is about as far removed from machine gun or automatic weapon as can be and still remain on earth, it would so seem.

  • Dustin Holloway

    I agree.

  • mr.nice

    For the same reason anyone would want to shoot paintballs, FOR FUN.

  • Tom

    the safety gear is required if you are on a approved paintball battle field if you and your friends are doing it on private property there is no rules and if you have never been hit with a paint ball from a souped up gun you have no ideal how much it hurts and if you are hit right with some of the paintballs the can kill you