LANSING (WJRT) (1/14/2020) - Michigan residents would be allowed to carry and use stun guns as a non-lethal self-defense weapon under a bill approved in the State House on Tuesday.
State Rep. Michele Hoitenga, a Republican from Manton, said many people are uncomfortable carrying a firearm.
“Stun guns are a good, non-lethal way for people to protect themselves from violence – and there’s absolutely no reason to continue banning them in Michigan," she said.
Stun guns only work if there is direct contact with the target's skin while Tasers fire electric probes that penetrate into the target's skin.
Stun guns of all kinds had been prohibited entirely in Michigan until a Court of Appeals ruling in 2012, which states a complete ban on private possession of them violates the Second Amendment and the Michigan Constitution.
State laws were revised after the ruling to allow people with a concealed pistol license to carry a Taser. Stun guns remain illegal, however.
Hoitenga's bill would allow anyone age 18 or older to carry and use a stun gun.
“The safety of our residents is not a partisan issue,” Hoitenga said. “It’s time to give our residents access to this effective and non-lethal option for defending themselves.”
House Bill 4020 moves to the Senate for consideration. It would have to be approved there before Gov. Gretchen Whitmer could sign it into law.