ILA | Hawaii: Self Defense Bill Up in Committee Tomorrow

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Tomorrow, February 22nd, the House Committee on Judiciary & Hawaiian Affairs is hearing House Bill 534 House Draft 1, to improve the ability of law-abiding citizens to defend themselves and their loved ones. Please consider submitting testimony in favor of HB 534 HD 1 through the Hawaii Legislative website. For help creating an account and submitting testimony, click here.

House Bill 534, as amended in House Draft 1, clarifies when the use of force for self-defense is justified. It states that citizens may defend themselves, their “legally occupied dwelling or motor vehicle,” and other people against assailants, and that there is no duty to retreat under those circumstances when they occupy premises in which they have a legal right to be and are not engaged in unlawful activity. In addition, it provides immunity from civil action for lawful use of force. Victims of violent crime shouldn’t be subjected to unnecessary civil suits, thereby being victimized twice.

Update on Firearm Related Bills Recently Heard in Committee:

Senate Bill 301, sponsored by Karl Rhoads (D-13), bans all magazines capable of holding more than 10 rounds of ammunition, unless the magazine has been permanently altered. The committee amended the bill to remove the provision that would have expanded Hawaii’s current ban on “assault pistols” to include commonly owned rifles and shotguns that contain certain features. The Senate Committee on Judiciary passed SB 301 with amendments on February 17th.

Senate Bill 307, sponsored by Karl Rhoads (D-13), bans “any firearm or rifle with the capacity to fire ammunition of fifty caliber or higher.” The Senate Committee on Judiciary passed SB 307 with amendments on February 9th.

House Bill 31, sponsored by Gregg Takayama (D-34), creates a more restrictive mandatory firearm storage scheme. The House Committee on Judiciary and Hawaii Affairs passed HB 31 on February 9th.

House Bill 1366, sponsored by Patrick Branco (D-50), amends language regarding home-built firearms passed last session (Act 74 2020) to apply retroactively. The House Committee on Judiciary and Hawaii Affairs passed HB 1366 with amendments on February 16th.

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