In St. Louis, MO, 28th Ward Alderwoman Lyda Krewson is taking steps to remedy what she is referring to as a major health crisis in the area: gun violence.
On Tuesday, Krewson announced she had filed a pair of bills to balance Missouri’s new Constitutional carry law; the first bill aims ban assault weapons inside St. Louis city limits.
“I’ve been thinking about this for a while,” said Krewson, who is also a candidate for mayor. “I think it’s time to push back against some of this. These are common sense provisions, and they’re worth fighting for.”
The bill would make it illegal for anyone to import, sell, manufacture, transfer or possess an ‘assault weapon’ in the city of St. Louis and would only exclude members of law enforcement and military.
If signed into law, St. Louis residents who own firearms identified in the bill would have 60 days to either dispose of the weapon or remove it from the city. Any guns found in violation of the law would be subject to seizure and forfeiture by the city and a hefty punishment: 90 days in jail and up to a $500 fine.
In 2015, more than half (233) of the murders committed with firearms (418) were committed with handguns. Apparently, the thought process on gun control is ‘The overwhelming majority of gun crimes committed in St. Louis are not committed with ‘assault weapons’, so this assault weapons ban will be an effective way to crack down on gun violence in our city!’.
The bill has a very broad definition of what would be considered an assault weapons, with Krewson herself referring to them as “military-style weapons”. This also leaves a big question mark when it comes to what firearms would be classified as such under a number of individual interpretations of the bill since many politicians consider AR-15s a ‘military-style weapon’.
“Most people don’t think assault weapons are essential to self-defense or hunting,” Krewson said.
Krewson’s second bill would require gun owners to lock firearms in secure containers when leaving them in unattended vehicles.
“There are law-abiding, good folks carrying guns in cars,” she said. “We just want them put into a locked box,” when the vehicle is unattended.
“As we know, most guns used in crimes were not bought by the perpetrator of that crime,” Krewson said, stating police estimate more than 2,000 guns seized from criminals last year were either possessed illegally or used in connection with a crime.
If signed into law, gun owners would also be required to report a stolen or lost firearm to law enforcement within 48 hours of discovering their weapon stolen or lost. Gun owners in violation of the law would also face up to 90 days in jail and a fine of up to $500.