Folks are rallying around Joseph Palumbo, the owner of the Albion Gun Store, who earlier this month was forced to turn over to New York State Police purchasing records of patrons who bought an AR-15 with a bullet button from his shop.
To justify their request, police cited the state’s heavy-handed gun law the New York SAFE Act, which expanded the ban on so-called ‘assault weapons’ and put a retroactive ban on magazines that hold more than 10 rounds of ammunition.
Under the law, it is illegal for one to possess a semiautomatic rifle with a detachable magazine and one or more cosmetic features (pistol grip, telescoping stock, flash suppressor, among others). A bullet button modifies an AR-15 so that the magazine is affixed to the rifle and requires a tool to remove it.
After talking with both state and local authorities, Palumbo was under the impression these modified rifles were lawful under the SAFE Act.
“Joe Palumbo contacted the state and went through public routes to ensure he sold legal guns,” Mattie Zarpentine, the WNY Director of New York Revolution, told the NY Daily News. “This just proves how gray an area this is. We’re being turned into test cases.”
Now that Palumbo is in the crosshairs of the SAFE Act, the state police and Gov. Cuomo’s office, he’s concerned about the future of his shop. But he does take solace in the support he’s received from fellow gun owners around the New York.
“By making this statement, it shows we won’t just roll over, we won’t just lay down,” said Palumbo. “We will stand and fight for our constitutional rights. Because if we lose the second, we lose the rest.”