The Missouri House has passed yet another bill that expands the rights of gun owners, less than 24 hours after passing legislation aimed at blocking the federal government from enforcing federal gun laws in the Show-Me State.
During his State of the Union address last night, President Barack Obama emphasized the need for more background checks for gun buyers, saying that that the majority of Americans favor the proposal as a way to keep firearms out of the hands of criminals.
iPad photo of (l-r) State Senators Jamilah Nasheed (D, St. Louis) and Maria Chappelle-Nadal (D, University City). Chappelle-Nadal is sponsoring SB 124. Nasheed and other lawmakers attended the news conference announcing the bill.
If passed, parents would have to provide written notification that they own a firearm within 30 days of enrolling their child in school or within 30 days of becoming a gun owner if the child is already enrolled. Failure to do so would be an infraction and result in a $100 fine. It would also make it a Class A misdemeanor if the parent or guardian knows that their child is illegally in possession of a firearm and does nothing to stop it or does not report it to police -- and the parent or guardian would be guilty of a Class D felony if their minor child kills or wounds someone with an illegally-possessed gun. The bill’s sponsor, State Senator Maria Chappelle-Nadal (D, University City), told reporters today that their goal is to prevent minors from illegally possessing firearms and to also keep them out of the hands of gang members.
St. Louis police say they're seeing a significant uptick in gun violence in St. Louis, even as crime is down overall.
The department released the latest crime numbers for 2012 at the meeting of its oversight board on Wednesday morning. Aggravated assaults with a weapon are up 19 percent in 2012 compared to the same period in 2011.
Special groups like the Violent Offenders and gang units are targeting individuals with a history of gun violence and possession, police chief Dan Isom said, but that won't solve the entire problem.