Grant County Sheriff Tom Jones is the latest law enforcement officer to join the Second Amendment debate, saying he will stand up for people's rights to keep and bear arms.
Jones posted an open letter to the community Friday morning, saying he has been monitoring recent events, has received quite a bit of correspondence from Grant County residents regarding his stance on the gun control debate and decided it was time to let people know where he stood on the Second Amendment.
The sheriff said that he believes that the root cause of recent incidents where firearms were used wasn't the weapons themselves but on the "violent and disturbed people who do the shootings."
"The weapon should not be the focus; the focus should be the mental stability and intent of the person handling the weapon," Jones wrote.
Jones, who identifies himself as being pro-Second Amendment, said he believes the rights of people to keep and bear arms should not be infringed upon and that taking away weapons would not solve the country's concerns over firearms.
"I would like to make it clear that I oppose those who would try and take away these rights," Jones continued. "I, as your Sheriff, support the citizens of this county against unconstitutional attempts to infringe on the right to keep and bear arms."
Jones advocates instead for improved background checks for people buying guns at stores, gun shows and through private sales; creating a system to verify who can legally own guns; improving mental health care; and establishing better partnerships in communities across the nation to help curb gun-related violence.
He added these won't be easy tasks and will require both funding and support from legislators and citizens alike to help cut back on gun violence.