"Actions of horrific proportion besieged innocent theater goers in Aurora, Colorado, when 24-year-old gunman James Holmes unleashed a torrent of bullets, killing 12 and injuring 58 persons, the youngest of whom is three months old. My sincere condolences are extended to the families of those fatally wounded, and I also send my best wishes for both a physical and emotional recovery for those who were injured.
Many lives were ended prematurely today by a system which, while constitutionally supporting the right to bear arms, was never intended as permissive availability of weaponry intended for the field of battle. While we are concerned with guarding our borders from terrorism, we must confront the terrorism among us – the too easy acquisition of weapons which can result in, as in this case, a massacre of the innocent.
Access to high capacity weapons, their components and ammunition continue to be a threat to the general public and law enforcement. I urge fellow lawmakers within New York State and throughout the nation to promote the passage of legislation that bans the sale, distribution or access to automatic weapons, their parts and related ammunition to individuals outside law enforcement. I have introduced S3573 on numerous occasions, making all large ammunition feeding devices – magazines, belt drums, feed strips or similar devices, regardless of the year when they were manufactured – subject to the provisions of penal law. Let us work together to ensure that such a tragedy is not repeated."