Arizona Senate To vote On Bill Allowing “Snake Shot” In Cities

Apr 10, 2017

A rattlesnake in Sonoita.
Credit Jeff Maltzman

The Arizona Senate is set to vote on legislation allowing city residents to fire small-caliber guns loaded with tiny pellets normally used to shoot rats or snakes for any reason.

If Republican Rep. Jay Lawrence’s bill passes Monday, it heads to Gov. Doug Ducey for consideration because it has already passed the House.

The legislation is backed by a gun-rights group and opposed by people concerned about public safety and wildlife.

The proposal amends a landmark 2000 law aimed at celebratory gunfire enacted following the 1999 death of a Phoenix teen struck by a stray bullet.

It would all anyone to shoot so-called “rat shot” ammunition inside city limits. Proponents say people need to be able to legally dispatch snakes or rats, while opponents worry about unrestricted shooting and wildlife.