• Forecast
  • News Tip
  • Categories
Temperature Precipitation
Estimated read time
2m 15s

Smart guns fire up both sides of gun control debate

By CBS News 9:29 AM May 6, 2014

It’s something straight out of a James Bond movie: a gun that only its owner can fire.

That kind of technology is now available in the real world. It’s called a “smart gun.” Made in Germany, it requires users to wear a radio-controlled watch to fire it, reports CBS News’ Jan Crawford.

Maryland gun store owner Andy Raymond announced plans last week to sell it, but within 30 minutes of news getting out, the protests started coming in.

“Things went crazy,” Raymond said. “People just started calling. All three of our lines were just boom, boom, boom. A hundred emails. I mean, just like that.”

One caller warned Raymond’s business would be burned to the ground. Another threatened that Raymond would get what was coming to him.

It’s a weapon that fires up people on both sides of the gun control debate.

Some groups who support stringent gun laws say it could lead to wider gun ownership.

Gun rights supporters are even more opposed. They say it could eventually make smart gun technology mandatory in all weapons.

So Raymond backed down, announcing his decision not to sell the guns in a video rant he posted on Facebook.

“So anyway, obviously I received numerous death threats today. I really [expletive] appreciate that, it’s really [expletive] classy,” Raymond said in the video.

A similar situation happened in Southern California in March. The Oak Tree Gun Club planned to sell the smart gun, but there was a backlash from gun owners. The store reversed course.

“I don’t know anyone who wants a smart gun,” said Lee Williams, investigative reporter for the Sarasota Herald-Tribune who writes a gun column.

He said opponents see the smart gun laws as a back door way to ban guns.

“If you require only smart guns to be sold and only smart guns to be possessed, the guns that they own now will be declared illegal and it could be a further intrusion on their 2nd Amendment rights,” Williams said.

A New Jersey law would do just that. It would eventually require all handguns sold in the state to have the same kind of technology.

California is considering a similar law and Democrats in Congress have proposed federal legislation.

As the technology becomes more available, however, people on both sides say it’s only a matter of time before these guns get on the market.

“The technology isn’t going away,” Raymond said. “If people want to defeat it they need to defeat it in the free market. Then don’t buy it.”

Groups including law enforcement are not ready to invest because they say the technology isn’t reliable yet.

© 2014 CBS Interactive Inc. All Rights Reserved.

Latest Stories

  • Sports

    Slideshow: Knik 200 sled dog race

    by KTVA CBS 11 News on Jan 31, 20:10

    It was said that you could “feel the fury in the air,” as 30 teams left the start of the Knik 200 sled dog race at the Deshka Landing Airstrip Saturday afternoon in Willow. Finishing the Knik 200 is a test run for some of the mushers and their dogs, a preparation for Iditarod. “For a lot […]

  • Weather

    Weekend weather forecast

    by KTVA CBS 11 News on Jan 31, 19:51

    Sunny skies have taken over the Anchorage area and will be sticking around for the next five to seven days. High pressure has moved in from the west. It really has taken over all of the Interior stretching into the Northwest. This dry pattern will not allow any storm system to track in for about […]

  • News

    UPDATE: 2 in hospital after planes collide mid-air in the Valley

    by KTVA CBS 11 News on Jan 31, 15:36

    Troopers are responding to a plane crash in the Mat-Su Valley that occurred Saturday afternoon. Just after 1 p.m., Alaska State Troopers received a report that two aircrafts collided mid-air in the Valley, said AST spokeswoman Megan Peters. Authorities responded to two separate wreckage sites, in the area of Knik-Goose Bay Road and Vine Road. Both planes were […]

  • News

    Less than 50 days ’til Alaska sees 1st day of spring

    by Janessa Webb on Jan 31, 14:19

    While the Midwest and portions of the East coast have been shoveling their way out of a snowstorm, it’s well below average in the snowfall department across the 49th state. A large dome of high pressure took over the state Sunday afternoon, causing temperatures across the southern Seward Peninsula and North Slope to hit 30 […]

  • News

    McDonald’s around Anchorage to let customers ‘pay with lovin’

    by Sierra Starks on Jan 31, 13:57

      Imagine this. A customer walks into his local McDonald’s restaurant to order from the breakfast menu. “Two hash browns and a small coffee,” he tells the cashier, Matt. Instead of giving the customer his total to pay, the cashier says, “You know what? For your payment today, do you have your cell phone with […]

  • News

    UPDATE: Begich will not run for Anchorage mayor, will head company instead

    by Sierra Starks on Jan 31, 13:04

    Former Sen. Mark Begich’s next move is no longer a secret — he will not be running for the Mayor of Anchorage in this year’s election. The former senator has announced that he is instead creating his own company, Northern Compass Group. Begich says the company will focus on developing businesses and working on public […]

  • Sports

    Local Seahawks fans voice their support ahead of Super Bowl Sunday

    by on Jan 30, 23:11

    The Seattle Seahawks continue preparing for Super Bowl XLIX in Glendale, Ariz. Fans back in Anchorage are sending a loud message to their favorite team hoping the Seahawks win their second straight championship. Fans staged a rally early Friday night at Flat Top Pizza. It took place after they took part in another event at […]

  • News

    Former NFL player helps teens become successful, avoid trouble with the law

    by Dave Leval on Jan 30, 22:50

    Former defensive end Mao Tosi has tackled many people during his playing days in college and in the NFL with the Arizona Cardinals. Being home in Anchorage, however, may provide his biggest obstacle. Ten years ago, Tosi created AK Pride, a program in which he teams mentors with kids in a variety of programs ranging […]