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Sonoma County sheriff offers middle ground on guns

Sonoma County Sheriff Steve Freitas told gun rights supporters Tuesday night that he favors a middle ground with respect to restricting guns, even as he acknowledged that the state's current assault weapons law has on one occasion left his staff baffled.

Freitas was speaking on a panel at a forum sponsored by the county's Republican Central Committee. Among the panelists were Assemblyman Tim Donnelly, R-Twin Peaks, and a leader of the gun rights group Calguns Foundation.

Freitas acknowledged he had yet to decide personally where to draw the line between allowing unlimited gun rights and prohibiting all gun possession. But he asked the audience of more than 170 people to consider every friend, family member and acquaintance they know.

"Should they all have a loaded gun all the time?" Freitas asked. "I have some family members who shouldn't."

Even so, Freitas said he was pleased by the U.S. Supreme Court decisions establishing an individual's right to possess firearms in certain circumstances. He also suggested that he has provided more concealed weapons permits than his predecessor.


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