If you want to buy a Mossberg Shockwave or a Remington Tac-14, you may have to wait a while. According to the Oregon Firearms Federation, the Oregon State Police who are tasked with background checks in that state have put a “hold” on all transfers involving those two firearms. They are now waiting on a ruling from the Oregon Department of Justice.
As you will remember, the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms, and Explosives has decided that these 14 inch firearms built on shotgun receivers having an overall length of greater than 26 inches, and with a bird’s head grip are not shotguns but rather generic firearms.
Oregon law describes “short barrel” shotguns as:
“a shotgun having one or more barrels less than 18 inches in length and any weapon made from a shotgun if the weapon has an overall length of less than 26 inches.”
However, Oregon law does not define what a “shotgun” is.
Under Federal law, these are not shotguns at all since they are not designed to be fired from the shoulder. These firearms are not considered to have been “made from a shotgun” either since they come from the factory configured with no stock.
While Oregon law prohibit shotguns with barrels shorter than 18 inches, it provides for an “affirmative defense” if the shotgun “was registered as required under federal law.”
Of course, these guns cannot be “registered” under Federal law because they are not regulated under the NFA.
As you may know, many of these guns have already been transferred with OSP approval. OSP has no word on what will happen to people who bought them legally prior to this new policy.
OSP has promised to provide a copy of whatever determination the Department of Justice makes on these guns. If we receive it we will provide it.
In some states such as North Carolina, there is a definition of any other weapon that more restrictive than the federal law. For example, NCGS § 14-288.8(c)(2) states that a weapon other than a shotgun with a bore greater than 1/2 inch is considered a “weapon of mass death and destruction” unless it is registered under the NFA. This would seem to preclude the sale of the Shockwave and Tac-14 in North Carolina. However, Oregon law has no such definition. Any move to ban their transfer would be stretching the law for political purposes. Unfortunately, given the state of affairs in Oregon in recent years that would not be shocking.