COLUMBUS, Ohio -
Ohio House lawmakers say hunters can use noise suppressors to kill animals. Silencers and mufflers can be used in Ohio under limited circumstances, but can only be used to kill nuisance animals with a permit. A bill passed on Wednesday in the Ohio House of Representatives by a 73 - 14 vote is meant to protect hunter's hearing by lowering the decibel level from firearms.
During the house committee hearings on the bill the only group or person who spoke out against the bill is Larry Mitchell with the League of Ohio Sportsmen. Mitchell said their objection to the bill was administrative concerns. He said the bill would make a new definition called suppressor as opposed to the way Ohio law is now written with the term muffler.
I contacted the Ohio Prosecuting Attorneys Association, which originally opposed the proposed legislation. John Murphy with the association said they are no longer opposed to the bill. The State Fraternal Order of Police spokesman said they are not taking a position on the legislation. The Ohio Association of Police Chiefs did not respond to calls and emails.
The bill would let licensed hunters use the suppressors in hunting game such as, groundhogs, squirrels and rabbits.
According to the Justice Department Bureau of ATF and Explosives in April 2013, 25,353 Ohio individuals were registered to own a silencer.