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Committee recommends bill excluding archery equipment from dangerous weapon list

Published: Friday, March 7 2014 3:00 p.m. MST

The Kennett family enjoy learning the shoot a bow and arrow at Salt Lake Archery Friday, Feb. 21, 2014 in Sugar House. Restricted individuals, a population made up mostly of convicted felons, soon may not have to leave Utah to hunt with archery equipment.

Scott G Winterton, Deseret News

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SALT LAKE CITY — Restricted individuals, a population made up mostly of convicted felons, soon may not have to leave Utah to hunt with archery equipment.

HB268 would modify the definition of a dangerous weapon, which restricted individuals are prohibited from possessing or using. The bill tightens up the definition to clear up confusion over whether restricted individuals are allowed to use archery equipment.

Possession and use of archery equipment specifically would be allowed under the bill, which passed the Senate Economic Development and Workforce Services Committee with a 4-1 vote. The bill now heads to the full Senate.

"The genesis of this bill was really one to try to put Utah on par with any of our surrounding states here in the West and provide a limited hunting opportunity to individuals that have otherwise been deemed restricted individuals under the law," said bill sponsor Rep. Brian Greene, R-Pleasant Grove.

The bill wouldn't provide a blanket exception because it could be trumped by parole or probation stipulations, and archery equipment could still be considered a dangerous weapon if used improperly or unlawfully.

"They are our citizens," Greene said. "They’ve come back and reintegrated into society after paying their debt to society and would enjoy the opportunity to participate in those activities within the state."

— Madeleine Brown

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