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Chief James Sheppard of the Rochester Police Department is part of the Major Cities Chiefs Police Association, which is now officially behind the SAFE Act on a national level.
The organization is currently battling a request from the National Rifle Association to block the enforcement of the law. The chiefs have filed a legal brief to support it, while county sheriffs are on the other side. It's primarily assault weapons where their opinions differ.
Sheppard said assault weapons are found in city seizures and in common crimes as well; it's not always handguns. He said there's a difference in the violence you see in the city compared to the rest of the county.
"The issues are totally different and I think for me my position is life, preserving life, and reducing violence, particularly gun violence, so that's why I stand behind it," Sheppard said.
Sheppard says as a police chief he has a very strong advocacy against guns that are carried illegally, used illegally and obtained illegally.