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New York state residents own approximately 1 million Bushmaster rifles, the same firearm used to murder 20 children at Sandy Hook Elementary School, according to the New York Post’s Fred Dicker. In a column on why buying back assault weapons might be difficult, Dicker says that while Gov. Andrew Cuomo’s office puts the number of Bushmaster guns owned by New Yorkers at just 30,000, “industry experts who have firsthand knowledge of gun sales in New York over many years say there are ‘at least” a million semiautomatic rifles” in the state manufactured by Bushmaster.
That includes the AR-15, the gun used at Sandy Hook, and the M16, more commonly used by law enforcement. Bushmaster is headquartered in Herkimer County, halfway between Syracuse and Albany.
Dicker says that as a result, any buyback program would cost the state about $1 billion.
The exact number of legally possessed semiautomatic assault rifles is not known because owners do not have to register them.