2017 - 2018 LEGISLATURE
September 14, 2017 - Introduced by Senators Darling, Wanggaard, Carpenter,
Erpenbach and Lasee, cosponsored by Representatives Sanfelippo,
Anderson, Brandtjen, E. Brooks, Duchow, Edming, Gannon, Kuglitsch,
Ripp, Rohrkaste and Thiesfeldt. Referred to Committee on Judiciary and
1An Act to repeal
941.29 (4); to renumber
175.35 (2g) (b); to renumber and
175.35 (3); to amend
48.57 (3p) (g) 2., 165.63 (4) (a), 813.1285 (3) (a) 3
1. d., 813.1285 (4) (b) 1. (intro.), 813.1285 (7) (b), 941.29 (1g) (a), 973.12 and 4
976.05 (12); and to create
175.35 (2g) (b) 2., 175.35 (3) (b), 175.35 (4), 939.46 5
(3), 939.6195 and 941.2905 of the statutes; relating to: furnishing, purchasing,
6or possessing a firearm for a person who is prohibited from possessing a
7firearm, mandatory minimum sentences for individuals who commit certain
8firearm violations, and providing criminal penalties.
Analysis by the Legislative Reference Bureau
This bill creates a crime for purchasing a firearm with the intent to transfer it
to a person who is prohibited from possessing a firearm, which is also known as
“straw purchasing.” The crime under the bill includes furnishing or possessing a
firearm for a prohibited person. Under current law, a person who knowingly
furnishes with a firearm a person who is prohibited from possessing a firearm may
be convicted of illegal possession of a firearm.
Under current law, a federally licensed firearm dealer may not transfer a
handgun to a person until the person has completed a form that the dealer must use
to conduct a background check on the person. If a person provides false information
on the form, the person must be fined not less than $500 nor more than $10,000 and
may be imprisoned for not more than nine months. This bill increases the penalty
to a Class H felony if the false information regards whether the person is purchasing
the firearm with the purpose or intent of transferring the firearm to a person who
is prohibited from possessing a firearm. This bill authorizes the Department of
Justice to prosecute the violation.
This bill also creates an affirmative defense to straw purchasing crimes if the
defendant has ever filed a petition for a domestic abuse injunction or a child abuse
injunction against the person for whom the defendant was furnishing, purchasing,
or possessing the firearm or for whom the defendant provided false information on
a firearm form.
Under this bill, a person is subject to a mandatory minimum period of
confinement in prison of four years if the person is convicted of illegally possessing
a firearm or convicted of another crime involving a firearm and, within five years
prior to that conviction, he or she had been convicted of committing either three
misdemeanors or one felony. This mandatory minimum sentence requirement
expires on July 1, 2022.
For further information see the state and local fiscal estimate, which will be
printed as an appendix to this bill.
The people of the state of Wisconsin, represented in senate and assembly, do
enact as follows:
48.57 (3p) (g) 2. of the statutes is amended to read:
(g) 2. The person has had imposed on him or her a penalty specified 3
in s. 939.64, 1999 stats., or s. 939.641, 1999 stats., or s. 939.6195,
939.62, 939.621, 4
939.63 or 939.645 or has been convicted of a violation of the law of any other state 5
or federal law under circumstances under which the person would be subject to a 6
penalty specified in any of those sections if convicted in this state.
165.63 (4) (a) of the statutes is amended to read:
(a) Enforce or investigate a violation of s. 941.29 or 941.2905
175.35 (2g) (b) of the statutes is renumbered 175.35 (2g) (b) 1.
175.35 (2g) (b) 2. of the statutes is created to read:
(b) 2. The department of justice shall ensure that each notification 12
form under subd. 1. requires the transferee to indicate that he or she is not
purchasing the firearm with the purpose or intent to transfer the firearm to a person 2
who is prohibited from possessing a firearm under state or federal law and that each 3
notification form informs the transferee that making a false statement with regard 4
to this purpose or intent is a Class H felony.
175.35 (3) of the statutes is renumbered 175.35 (3) (a) and amended 6
(a) Any person who intentionally violates sub. (2), (2e),
or (2j) 8
shall be fined not less than $500 nor more than $10,000 and may be imprisoned for 9
not more than 9 months.
175.35 (3) (b) of the statutes is created to read:
(b) 1. Except as provided in subd. 2., a person who intentionally 12
violates sub. (2e) shall be fined not less than $500 nor more than $10,000 and may 13
be imprisoned for not more than 9 months.
2. A person who violates sub. (2e) by intentionally providing false information 15
regarding whether he or she is purchasing the firearm with the purpose or intent to 16
transfer the firearm to another who the person knows or reasonably should know is 17
prohibited from possessing a firearm under state or federal law is guilty of a Class 18
H felony. The penalty shall include a fine that is not less than $500.
175.35 (4) of the statutes is created to read:
The department of justice or the district attorney may institute, 21
manage, control, and direct, in the proper county, a prosecution for a violation of sub. 22
(2e) that is punishable under sub. (3) (b) 2. When prosecuting such a violation, the 23
department of justice shall have and exercise all powers conferred upon district 24
813.1285 (3) (a) 1. d. of the statutes is amended to read:
(a) 1. d. The court informs the person to whom the firearm is 2
surrendered of the requirements and penalties under s. 941.29 (4) 941.2905
813.1285 (4) (b) 1. (intro.) of the statutes is amended to read:
(b) 1. (intro.) If the respondent wants to surrender his or her 5
firearms to a person who is not the sheriff and who appears at the hearing to 6
surrender firearms, and if the court, after considering all relevant factors and input 7
from the petitioner, approves the surrender and informs the person to whom the 8
firearms are surrendered of the requirements and penalties under s.
941.29 (4) 9941.2905
, order the respondent to surrender his or her firearms in one of the 10
813.1285 (7) (b) of the statutes is amended to read:
(b) If a respondent surrenders a firearm under this section that 13
is owned by a person other than the respondent, the person who owns the firearm 14
may apply for its return to the circuit court for the county in which the person to 15
whom the firearm was surrendered is located. The court shall order such notice as 16
it considers adequate to be given to all persons who have or may have an interest in 17
the firearm and shall hold a hearing to hear all claims to its true ownership. If the 18
right to possession is proved to the court's satisfaction, it shall order the firearm 19
returned. If the court returns a firearm under this paragraph, the court shall inform 20
the person to whom the firearm is returned of the requirements and penalties under 21
s. 941.29 (4) 941.2905
939.46 (3) of the statutes is created to read:
A petitioner under s. 813.12 or 813.122, or an individual whose 24
parent, stepparent, or legal guardian filed a petition under s. 813.122 on behalf of the 25
individual as a child victim, as defined in s. 813.122 (1) (c), has an affirmative defense
for an offense under s. 175.35 (2e) that is punishable under s. 175.35 (3) (b) 2., or for 2
an offense under s. 941.2905, if the person prohibited from possessing a firearm was 3
the respondent in the action under s. 813.12 or 813.122.
939.6195 of the statutes is created to read:
5939.6195 Mandatory minimum sentence for repeat firearm crimes. (1) 6
In this section:
(a) “Firearm violation" means any of the following:
1. A violation of s. 941.29 or 941.2905.
2. A commission of any crime specified under chs. 939 to 951 and 961 if the 10
person uses a firearm in the commission of the crime.
(b) “Repeater" has the meaning given in s. 939.62 (2).
If a person who is a repeater is convicted of a firearm violation, the court 13
shall impose a bifurcated sentence under s. 973.01. Notwithstanding s. 973.01 (2) 14
(b), the term of confinement in prison portion of the bifurcated sentence shall be at 15
least 4 years, but otherwise the penalties for the crime apply, subject to any 16
applicable penalty enhancement. The court may not place the person on probation.
This section does not apply to sentences imposed after July 1, 2022.
The department of justice shall, after consulting with persons the 19
department determines to be appropriate, including the city of Milwaukee and the 20
Milwaukee police department, prepare a report on the efficacy of the mandatory 21
minimum sentence under this section. No later than August 1, 2022, the department 22
of justice shall submit the report to the chief clerk of each house of the legislature, 23
for distribution to the legislature under s. 13.172 (2).
941.29 (1g) (a) of the statutes is amended to read:
(a) “Violent felony" means any felony under s. 943.23 (1m), 1999 2
stats., or s. 943.23 (1r), 1999 stats., this section, or s. 940.01, 940.02, 940.03, 940.05, 3
940.06, 940.08, 940.09, 940.10, 940.19, 940.195, 940.20, 940.201, 940.203, 940.21, 4
940.225, 940.23, 940.235, 940.285 (2), 940.29, 940.295 (3), 940.30, 940.302, 940.305, 5
940.31, 940.43 (1) to (3), 940.45 (1) to (3), 941.20, 941.26, 941.28,
941.30, 941.327 (2) (b) 3. or 4., 943.02, 943.04, 943.06, 943.10 (2), 943.23 (1g), 943.32, 7
943.87, 946.43, 948.02 (1) or (2), 948.025, 948.03, 948.04, 948.05, 948.051, 948.06, 8
948.07, 948.08, 948.085, or 948.30.
941.29 (4) of the statutes is repealed.
941.2905 of the statutes is created to read:
11941.2905 Straw purchasing of firearms. (1)
Whoever intentionally 12
furnishes, purchases, or possesses a firearm for a person, knowing that the person 13
is prohibited from possessing a firearm under s. 941.29 (1m), is guilty of a Class G 14