Sanford gun instructor believes Las Vegas shooter modified guns

By Jeff Allen, Reporter
Last Updated: Tuesday, October 03, 2017, 10:41 PM EDT

Investigators with the ATF now say a dozen of Stephen Paddock's guns were semi-automatic weapons modified to fire fully automatic rounds on thousands of people in Las Vegas. Certified firearms instructor Chuck Powers told us the gunfire sounded like it came from guns modified with what’s known as a 'bump stock.'

  • Chuck Powers operates Critical Protection Service
  • Powers does not use fully automatic guns, supports recreational use
  • Powers: semi-automatic weapons ideal for gun enthusiasts

“The recoil of the gun causes the gun to fire, so it creates a rapid-firing process,” said Powers, the operator of Critical Protection Service in Sanford, where he trains security officers and others on safe gun use.

The Florida Coalition to Prevent Gun Violence called for tougher gun control in the wake of the Las Vegas shooting, releasing a statement that says in part, “We cannot continue to allow easy access to assault weapons in our country. We have seen the consequences of such access too many times.”

Powers says legislation to restrict gun sales could violate people’s 2nd Amendment rights.

“Once they start to take one part of our rights away, or a piece of it, then you’re losing something you’ll probably never gain back,” said Powers.

Powers says unmodified semi-automatic weapons that just shoot off one round at a time are actually ideal for gun enthusiasts.

“It’s easy for children to shoot, because it has low recoil,” said Powers.

Powers says he doesn’t use fully automatic guns, but supports those who use them for sport.

“When you shoot a full automatic there is an adrenaline rush with it," Powers said. "It’s something exciting and people want to experience that."

Powers says instead of focusing on gun control, legislators should try to tackle mental health.

“We really as a society need to focus on people around us who start showing symptoms of depression or hate issues that would stem this type of violence,” said Powers.