Saturday, May 8, 2021

BRADY APPLAUDS PROPOSED DEPARTMENT OF JUSTICE RULE REGULATING GHOST GUNS: "THIS WILL SAVE LIVES"

https://www.bradyunited.org/press-releases/biden-garland-department-justice-ghost-guns-rule


Washington, D.C., May 7, 2021 - Today, Brady applauds President Biden and the Biden Administration for issuing a proposed rule to regulate ghost gun kits and parts as firearms. This action, when in effect, will have an immediate and tangible impact on the effort to prevent gun violence. This proposed rule will require that unfinished frames and receivers be serialized and their sale subject to a background check from a licensed dealer. This regulation will help stop the continued proliferation of unregulated and untraceable ghost guns into communities all over the country.

Brady President Kris Brown said:

“President Biden has once again demonstrated his understanding of America’s gun violence epidemic and his commitment to addressing gun violence in all of its forms. Ghost guns undermine nearly every gun law in the country, and they are marketed and sold for that purpose. The rule proposed by the Justice Department today will have a tangible impact. Unregulated access to ghost guns is a threat to public safety, which is why gun violence prevention advocates, community leaders, and law enforcement have all called for their regulation. Currently, any person can purchase a ghost gun without any background check or safeguard. This loophole has been exploited and utilized by individuals who are prohibited from purchasing a firearm, circumventing the base principles of our gun safety laws. Today’s action ends that. In requiring background checks and the serialization of these parts, President Biden and the U.S. Department of Justice will ensure that any individual who should be prohibited from purchasing a firearm has no legal avenue to do so. At long last these weapons will be treated as the firearms we know they are. This will save lives.”

Brady Program Manager and former Chief of the California Department of Justice’s Bureau of Firearms Steve Lindley shared:

Ghost guns are a clear and present danger to law enforcement, our communities, and any effort to reduce firearm violence in our country. These weapons undermine the many public safety laws that states have worked hard to pass - laws with overwhelming public support, such as background checks, that help to keep communities and law enforcement safe. This proposed rule will help keep all Americans safe and reduce gun violence and gun trafficking by ensuring that these weapons are serialized and regulated.This is a common-sense regulation and we are grateful to Attorney General Garland and President Biden for proposing this rule. This will save lives.”

Brady Senior Counsel and Director of Racial Justice Kelly Sampson shared:

“This proposed rule is part of President Biden’s plan to address gun violence in all of its forms, a plan that takes particular note of an unacceptable reality: Black and Brown communities in the United States are disproportionately affected by this epidemic. In America, Black people are ten times more likely to die from gun homicide than white people. Gun violence is the leading cause of death for Black Youth and Black youth are fourteen times more likely than their white counterparts to die from gun homicide. On the whole, gun violence decreases Black Americans’ average life expectancy by about four years. Ghost guns are a part of that gun violence and in the past few years we have seen an exponential rise in the recovery of ghost guns in Black and Brown communities nationwide. Unregulated access to unserialized ghost guns has further fuel gun trafficking into our communities, perpetuating violence into communities created by years of inequity, racism, and oppression. By regulating ghost guns as what they are --firearms, President Biden is reducing a driver of gun violence in our communities and building on his historic funding for community violence prevention. This rule will have an immediate and tangible impact.”

About Ghost Guns:

Ghost guns are unserialized and untraceable firearms that are often made from "ghost gun kits," that can be bought online, at gun shows or at gun stores and assembled at home. "Ghost gun kits," include all of the parts and often the equipment necessary to build these weapons at home. These kits are widely available and can be purchased by anyone, including prohibited purchasers, domestic abusers, and gun traffickers — without a background check. As these kits and guns are sold at gun shows and online every day throughout the country, they undermine all of the life-saving policies that state legislatures have fought so hard to put in place. We have seen ghost guns used in crimes already, such as in New York, where six-year-old Miguel Everson was shot in the back by his uncle, who was a prohibited purchaser but obtained a ghost gun, and in the 2019 Saugus High School Shooting, where a minor used a .45 caliber pistol that was assembled from a kit.

This is a growing concern, as:
·       The ATF estimated that in just 2019, over 10,000 ghost guns were recovered by law enforcement.
·       The CA Bureau of Firearms seized 512 percent more ghost guns from persons identified through the Armed Prohibited Persons System database in 2019 than in 2018.
·       In January 2020, the ATF’s Los Angeles Field Division reported that over 40 percent of its cases involved ghost guns.
·       In just one week in January 2021, 17 percent of firearms recovered by the Metropolitan Police Department in Washington, DC were ghost guns.
·       In San Francisco, the number of ghost guns seized by local law enforcement jumped 600 percent between 2017 and 2019
·       In Onondaga County, in New York State the number of ghost guns recovered jumped 188 percent between 2018 and 2019 and in 2020, the county was again on track to break their record for recoveries - halfway through the year, more ghost guns had been recovered than in all of 2019.

About Brady’s First-of-its-Kind Lawsuit, McFadyen v. Ghost Gunner Inc.

Represented by Brady and the international law firm Orrick, Herrington, & Sutcliffe the survivors and the families of the people killed in the 2017 mass shooting in Rancho Tehama, California, recently brought forward McFadyen v. GhostGunner Inc., the nation’s first two civil lawsuits by victims of gun violence against the ghost gun industry.

Plaintiffs allege in the complaint that the defendants have chosen to engage in a business that utilizes online loopholes that enable prohibited purchasers to acquire weapons without a Brady Background Check or any interaction with a Federal Firearms Licensee (FFL). In doing so, Brady alleges that the defendants have chosen to intentionally undermine federal and state gun laws by designing, marketing, and selling ghost gun kits and firearms parts, which allowed the Rancho Tehama gunman, who was barred from purchasing or possessing a firearm, to obtain two AR-15-style ghost guns. During the gunman’s shooting spree in November 2017, he killed five people and injured 18 others at eight separate crime scenes, including an elementary school.

Thursday, April 29, 2021

CONGRESS TO PASS TRANSFORMATIVE GUN VIOLENCE PREVENTION LAWS

“THE TIME IS NOW TO TAKE ACTION:” 

BRADY JOINS PRESIDENT BIDEN’S CALL TO ACTION.

 President Biden Became The First President Since Bill Clinton To Highlight Gun Violence Prevention In His First Address To A Joint Session Of Congress

 https://www.bradyunited.org/press-releases/the-time-is-now-to-take-action-biden-join-address-congress

 Washington, D.C., April 28, 2021 - Tonight, Brady applauds President Biden’s clear and moral leadership in calling on Congress to pass common-sense gun violence prevention laws during his first address to a joint session of Congress. President Biden reiterated the scope of our nation’s gun violence crisis, including his recent executive action to prevent the proliferation of ghost guns, and calling on Congress to reauthorize the Violence Against Women Act, expand and strengthen Brady background checks, and pass a ban on assault weapons and high-capacity magazines. Brady joins with President Biden in calling for these policies and supports him and all elected officials in the effort to make them the law of the land.

Brady President Kris Brown shared:

“Tonight, President Biden proved again that he is the strongest gun violence prevention champion ever to occupy the Oval Office, becoming the first President since President Clinton in 1993 to highlight the need to prevent gun violence in their first address to Congress. And, the policies he is calling for are just as transformative as the Brady Bill that President Clinton called on Congress to pass. President Biden called on Congress to follow his lead and to take action, just as he has in announcing six executive actions that will tangibly and immediately affect gun violence.

We need the legislative fixes that President Biden called on Congress to pass. He rightly called for Congress to pass the George Floyd Justice in Policing Act to help stop police violence that traumatizes Black and Brown communities across the country. President Biden authored the Violence Against Women act in the 1994 and now, 27 years later, the Senate must follow the House’s lead and pass its reauthorization, including the fix to the so-called ‘boyfriend loophole,’ without delay. The Senate must also pass the two bills sent from the House expanding and strengthening Brady background checks, which President Biden rightly said have the ‘overwhelming support of the American people.’ These policies, a legislative solution for untraceable ghost guns, and a ban on assault weapons and high-capacity magazines will help address the public health epidemic that kills over 100 Americans every day and disproportionately affects Black and Brown Americans. Brady echoes President Biden's clarion call to the Senate: the time is now to take action.

With President Biden, we can again pass transformative public safety laws to protect our families and communities from gun violence. As President Biden said, ‘we’ve done it before.’ President Biden has done it before. He has taken on the NRA and won - and this moment represents the best opportunity in a generation to do it again. We stand with President Biden just as he did with Jim and Sarah Brady in the 1990’s and now, just as then, we will pass these life-saving measures.”

About President Biden’s Executive Actions:

This month, President Biden outlined six initial actions to address gun violence:

1.    The White House has nominated David Chipman for Director of the U.S. Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives.

2.    The Justice Department, within 30 days, will issue a proposed rule to help stop the proliferation of ghost guns.

3.    The Justice Department, within 60 days, will publish model extreme risk order legislation for states. 

4.    The Justice Department will issue a new, comprehensive report on firearms trafficking and annual updates necessary to give policymakers the information they need to help address firearms trafficking today.

5.    The Administration is investing in substantive evidence-based community violence interventions, directing five federal agencies to modify 26 programs that will route vital support to community violence intervention programs as quickly as possible. This also adds to the proposed $5 billion investment in the American Jobs Plan that will support community violence intervention programs.

6.    The Justice Department, within 60 days, will issue a proposed rule to make clear when a device marketed as a stabilizing brace effectively turns a pistol into a short-barreled rifle subject to the requirements of the National Firearms Act.

 About the Violence Against Women Act (VAWA):

Passed in 1994, the Violence Against Women Act marked a seachange in the way in which our nation thinks about intimate partner violence. For over 20 years, Congress has reauthorized this common-sense bill that has helped to protect Americans from domestic abuse. However, the 116th Congress and notably the U.S. Senate led by Sen. Mitch McConnell allowed VAWA to expire on December 21, 2018. In an attempt to right this wrong, VAWA was temporarily reinstated on January 25, 2019, but was again allowed to expire on February 15, 2019, again due to the gun lobby’s protestations and stranglehold on the Senate. Even so, the U.S. House of Representatives passed a bill reauthorizing VAWA in April 2019, which was then allowed to languish without a vote in the Senate. Today’s vote to reauthorize VAWA is overdue.

This reauthorization would close what is known as the ‘boyfriend loophole.’ Under federal law, dating partners who do not share a child in common can still legally purchase and own guns, even if they abuse their partners. Additionally, persons convicted of stalking, battery, and assault misdemeanors can still purchase and possess guns. The reauthorization of the Violence Against Women Act would update federal law to close these dangerous loopholes. It does not include any language regarding extreme risk laws.

About H.R. 8:

Introduced on March 2, 2021 by Rep. Mike Thompson (CA-5), H.R. 8 makes it unlawful to sell or transfer a firearm in any transaction without a Brady Background Check. This bill expands the current Brady Law to every sale or transfer in private sales, subject to the narrow exceptions.

About H.R. 1446:

Introduced on March 2, 2021 by Rep. Jim Clyburn (SC-6), H.R. 1446 provides the background check system with additional time to make a final determination on a potential firearms purchaser before a licensed dealer can transfer a gun, addressing the so-called “Charleston loophole.”

Currently, federal law allows a “default proceed,” whereby a federally licensed firearm dealer (FFL) can transfer a gun to a customer if the federal background check is not completed within 3 business days of the background check request to the National Instant Criminal Background Check System (NICS).

The Charleston loophole is named for the 2015 mass shooting at the Emanuel African Methodist Episcopal (A.M.E.) Church in Charleston, S.C., that killed nine innocent people. The shooter – who was prohibited by law from possessing a firearm – was able to acquire his gun before the FBI could complete his background check. Although the FBI needed more time to investigate the shooter’s disqualifying records to determine whether the purchase was lawful, federal law allowed the dealer to transfer the gun after three days even though the check was not completed.

 

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