UPDATED: Pritzker responds to new gun law backlash from Downstate law enforcement

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QUINCY — Adams County Sheriff Tony Grootens was one of several sheriffs in Downstate Illinois to announce they will not be fully enforcing the new Protect Illinois Communities Act, which has also been called an assault weapons ban.

In a statement issued Wednesday, Grootens said he believes the new law is a “clear violation of the 2nd Amendment to the U.S. Constitution” and his duties as sheriff calls for him to protect the citizens of Adams County first and foremost.

“One of those enumerated rights is the right of the people to keep and bear arms provided under the 2nd amendment,” Grootens wrote. “The right to keep and bear arms for defense of life, liberty and property is regarded as an inalienable right by the people.

Therefore, as the custodian of the jail and chief law enforcement official for Adams County, that neither myself nor my office will be checking to ensure that lawful gun owners register their weapons with the State, nor will we be arresting or housing law abiding individuals that have been charged solely with non-compliance of this act.” 

Dozens of other sheriffs in Illinois signed off on the same statement.

On Tuesday night, the Adams County Board filed a resolution that also opposed the law.

While in Quincy Thursday, Governor JB Pritzker responded to the concerns of Grootens and other law enforcement officials regarding the new laws. His response is in the video above.

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