A Missouri representative has proposed a new bill that would prevent anyone convicted of a domestic abuse crime to purchase guns.
Democratic St. Louis Rep. Stacey proposed the bill saying it was to ban those convicted of domestic violence from having firearms and would give police tools to prevent gun deaths. The bill would also allow police to take firearms from a scene where domestic assault is suspected but the owner of the firearms could take the weapon back within two weeks of any proceedings related to suspected assault.
Anyone who has a restraining order against them in which a threat of violence is cited would be banned from owning a gun. Newman’s bill would also ban people who have committed a sexual offense from purchasing guns.
Nodaway County Sheriff Darren White has experienced many domestic disturbance calls involving a weapon, but a firearm has rarely been present.
“Domestic violence is a big issue, but I think we have the laws in place. If people knew there were consequences no matter what the case, then we wouldn’t have to do this. When someone is convicted of a felony, they already are unable to purchase or conceal a gun,” White said
Newman proposed a similar bill last year to a House panel on the last day of session, but it was too late to hold a hearing. GOP House Speaker Todd Richardson has not gone over Newman’s bill but believes the proposal will receive a hearing and will go no further.
"We've got a caucus in the Legislature that's going to fiercely defend the Second Amendment," Richardson said.
Even though this bill may not go through, statistics from smartgunlaws.org have shown that women involved in an abusive relationship are five times more likely to be murdered by their partner if they own a firearm. Between the years 1980-2008, more than two-thirds of spouse and ex-spouse homicide victims were killed by firearms.
Domestic violence plays a role in mass shootings as well. Research conducted by Everytown for Gun Safety, for each mass shooting in America (shooting in which four or more people were murdered) between January 2009 and July 2014 found that 57% of them involved the killing of a family member or a current or former intimate partner of the shooter.
A few states including Wisconsin and South Carolina have been passing their own laws to match or exceed the federal prohibitions. Both are controlled by Republican legislatures and have GOP governors.