AB-2733:  Firearms: unsafe handguns: imprinting.

Session: 2017-2018
Author: Harper
Status: Dead
AAP-CA Position: Oppose
To view the status of this bill on the State Website, click here.

Would delete the requirement that a firearm be designed and equipped with this imprinting technology to be listed on the roster of handguns that have been determined not to be unsafe. This bill contains other existing laws.

AAP Positional Letter

March 26, 2018

The Honorable Reginald Byron Jones-Sawyer Sr
Chair, Assembly Public Safety Committee
Legislative Office Building, 1020 N Street, Room 111
Sacramento, CA 95814

RE: ​​AB 2733 (Harper) Firearms: unsafe handguns: imprinting
AAP-CA Position: Oppose

Dear Chair Jones-Sawyer,

The American Academy of Pediatrics, California (AAP-CA), representing over 5,000 California pediatricians, strongly opposes AB 2733 (Harper), which would remove the microstamping requirement for new model handguns to be certified for sale in California.

This microstamping technology is a microscopic array of characters that identify the make, model, and serial number of the pistol. Current California law requires it be imprinted in two or more places on the interior surface or internal working parts of the pistol. These markings transfer by imprinting on each cartridge case when the firearm is fired. Microstamping enables law enforcement to use California’s handgun purchaser database to match a cartridge case found at a crime scene to the individual who purchased the handgun. The technology is a valuable crime-fighting tool because it helps law enforcement solve gun crimes where the actual firearms have not been recovered.

The Centers for Disease Control reports that in 2016, 4,927 children and youth age birth to 21 years, died from firearm injuries, and another 21,764 were non-fatally injured. Firearm related homicide and suicide are second only to motor vehicle crashes as a leading cause of death among teens and young adults. Although constituting only a small proportion of overall firearm-related morbidity and mortality, recent mass shootings have highlighted the substantial harm that assault-style weapons can incur by a single shooter in a short period of time. The catastrophic shooting in Las Vegas last year left 59 dead and more than 500 injured. Using a bump stock attachment similar to the ones used in Las Vegas enables a shooter to fire 400 to 800 rounds per minute, essentially allowing a semi-automatic weapon to function as a fully automatic machine gun.

AB 2733 (Harper) removes the microstamping requirement for new model handguns to be certified for sale in California, thus reducing the ability to track purchasers of guns, including semi-automatic pistols used to commit heinous crimes against children and youth in California.

Pediatricians members of AAP California Chapters 1, 2, 3 and 4 across the state urge you to vote NAY on AB 2733 (Harper). Thank you for your public service and leadership on behalf of the health and wellbeing of children, youth, and families in California.


Eric Ball, M.D., Fellow of the American Academy of Pediatrics
Executive Board Member, American Academy of Pediatrics, California

cc: Assembly Public Safety Committee Members
Office of Honorable Matthew Harper, California State Assembly (Author)
AAP-CA Leadership; Lobbyist Lydia Bourne