DENVER (DP) - The Democratic sponsor of a bill to hold manufacturers and sellers of assault-style weapons liable for the violence that occurs with the guns says he's found a way around a conflict with federal law.
Senate President John Morse, D-Colorado Springs, plans to introduce his bill Wednesday, but gave an overview the day before.
Critics immediately questioned whether Morse's bill would result in gun dealers essentially having to profile firearms purchasers based upon their appearance.
Under the bill, manufacturers and sellers of semi-automatic rifles could be sued for violent acts committed with the guns if they "negligently entrusted" the assault-style weapon to someone whom they "reasonably should have known might use the weapon" to cause harm. Under the bill, manufacturers and sellers would have to "use the highest degree of care" in selling, storing or transferring weapons.
The bill exempts handguns, shotguns and bolt-action rifles.