Project Safe Neighborhoods Program in Eastern Tennessee Awarded over $165,000 in Grants from the DOJ

The U.S. Department of Justice (DOJ) has awarded $166,027 to support the Project Safe Neighborhoods Program in the Eastern District of Tennessee.

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Pennsylvania State Senator Wants to Force Gun Owners to Carry Liability Insurance

State Senator Amanda Cappelletti (D-PA-Norristown) on Friday proposed legislation that would force Pennsylvania gun owners to carry liability insurance. 

In a memorandum describing her upcoming bill, Cappelletti wrote that gun-related injuries and deaths cost Pennsylvanians an estimated $12 million each year through lost wages, physical and mental healthcare payments, first-responder services and other expenses. She reasoned that some of these burdens should fall on firearm owners via insurance premiums. She added that insurers could then vary the size of those premiums according to whether policyholders take what she considers appropriate precautions. 

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Maricopa County Attorney Changes Policy for Cases Involving Gun Violence

Maricopa County Attorney Rachel Mitchell announced Thursday that she would change prosecution policies for cases involving gun violence in an attempt to ensure violent criminals face jail time.

“The revision to our plea policies recognizes that these crimes will not be tolerated in Maricopa County. Those who choose to put the residents of this county at risk by using a firearm in the commission of felony will be held accountable,” Mitchell said. “I will not let the Valley of the Sun and surrounding communities become another San Francisco or Chicago where law and order has been overlooked by prosecutors, which has caused unnecessary chaos.”

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Phoenix Police Seize Hundreds of ‘Crime Guns’ in Crackdown Operation

The Phoenix Police Department (PHXPD) announced that after roughly a month after the launch of “Operation Gun Crime Crackdown” (OGCC), officers seized hundreds of crime guns to reduce gun violence in the city.

“The results of this targeted effort are a great example of how working with our law enforcement partners can enhance the great work the men and women of the Phoenix Police Department do every day,” said Phoenix Police Chief Jeri Williams.

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State Representative Proposes Emergency Response Devices for Pennsylvania Schools

State Rep. Karen Boback (R-PA-Dallas) on Friday proposed legislation to equip Pennsylvania K-12 public schools with emergency response devices. 

The representative modeled her bill on “Alyssa’s Law,” named after Alyssa Alhadeff, a 14-year-old Marjory Stoneman Douglas High School student who was killed in the mass shooting that occurred on February 14, 2018. Alyssa’s Law, which Florida, New York, New Jersey and Nebraska have already enacted, requires all elementary and secondary schools to install panic alarms which are connected to area law-enforcement agencies. 

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Pennsylvania House Democrat Introduces Bill to Create Gun Purchase Permits

Pennsylvania state Representative Emily Kinkead (D-Pittsburgh) announced on Friday that she will sponsor a bill to require residents to obtain permits to buy guns. 

Her legislation is a companion to a Senate measure authored by Art Haywood (D-Philadelphia). The senator began touting his legislation the day after the May school shooting in Uvalde, TX in which an 18-year-old killed 19 children and two teachers. 

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Michigan Gov. Whitmer Signs Executive Order Aiming to Reduce Gun Violence

Gov. Gretchen Whitmer signed an executive directive instructing state departments to use federal resources from the Bipartisan Safer Communities Act in an effort to reduce crime and gun violence.

The directive follows a roundtable discussion with law enforcement, parents, students, and faith leaders on how to stop violence and hold criminals accountable for committing violent crimes.

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Democratic Officials Want Philadelphia Mayor Kenney to Resign

Jim Kenney wishes he wasn’t Philadelphia’s mayor. City Controller Rebecca Rhynhart and Councilman Derek Green — like Kenny, both Democrats — now wish the same.

Kenney drew their reproaches after confessing to reporters on Monday, July 4, that city violence has made his job a displeasure that he looks forward to concluding.

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Poll Says Georgia Gubernatorial Race Is Too Close to Call

It’s been a hot start to Georgia’s summer and the Peach State’s gubernatorial race is a dead heat.

A new Quinnipiac University Poll found that 48% of voters support incumbent Republican Gov. Brian Kemp, while an equal number of voters support Democratic challenger Stacey Abrams.

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DeWine to Ohio Superintendents: $100 Million Budgeted for School Safety Grants

Ohio schools will receive $100 million in total to purchase security equipment as part of the next round of K-12 School Safety Grants, Gov. Mike DeWine (R) wrote to superintendents on Friday.

The allocations, which come as a part of the state’s capital budget bill that DeWine signed into law last week, will go toward purchases such as outdoor lighting, facility-mapping software, school-radio systems, door-locking technology and visitor-badge systems. The Ohio School Safety Center in Columbus is now drafting the application for schools to access this money and expects to soon start the application process.

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Mastriano Proposes Allowing Permitted Teachers to Be Armed at Pennsylvania Schools

State Senator Doug Mastriano (R-Gettysburg) asked colleagues Tuesday to co-sponsor a bill he plans to introduce to let teachers carry guns in Pennsylvania schools. 

Under the proposal, teachers who hold concealed carry permits may be armed on school property provided they complete “a rigorous firearms course from a certified instructor.” Similar measures are now in effect in 28 states.

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State Representatives Seek to Impeach Philadelphia District Attorney Krasner

Republican members of the Pennsylvania House of Representatives on Monday circulated a memorandum seeking cosponsors for articles of impeachment for Philadelphia District Attorney Larry Krasner (D).

Reps. Josh Kail (R-Monaca), Torren Ecker (R-Abbottstown) and Tim O’Neal (R-Washington) wrote in their message to House colleagues that impeachment is a severe option that they would only initiate in the face of a prosecutor’s clear “dereliction of duty.” They charged Krasner with a “willful refusal to enforce Pennsylvania’s criminal laws” in Philadelphia.

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Ohio’s Portman Is Among Senators Backing Gun Control Deal

On Sunday, twenty U.S. senators, including Sen. Rob Portman (R-OH), announced they arrived at a proposal containing gun control and other measures they believe will curb violence in America.

The emerging legislation comes as pressure mounts on lawmakers to act in response to mass shootings like the recent ones in Buffalo, NY and Uvalde, TX. 

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Ashburn Man Sentenced to Nine Years for Weapons Trafficking

U.S. District Judge Leslie Gardner sentenced Demetri Lott, 44, of Ashburn, Georgia, to 9 years in prison after he pleaded guilty to two counts of the theft of a firearm from a licensed dealer on June 1.

“Our office is committed to prioritizing prosecutions of those responsible for the greatest gun violence in our communities, including those who illegally traffic in firearms,” said U.S. Attorney Peter D. Leary.

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Commentary: The Federal Government’s Own Study Concluded Its Ban on ‘Assault Weapons’ Didn’t Reduce Gun Violence

Do something.

This is a response—and perhaps a natural one—to a human tragedy or crisis. We saw this response in the wake of 9-11. We saw it during the Covid-19 pandemic. And we’re seeing it again following three mass shootings—in Buffalo, New York, Uvalde, Texas, and Tulsa Oklahoma—that claimed the lives of more than 30 innocent people, including small children.

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Commentary: Gun Violence Is the Penalty for Our Failure to Uphold a Moral, Functioning Society

In the wake of recent mass shootings in New York, Texas, and Oklahoma, Democrats are once again sending Americans up a blind alley. Their “solution” is to punish millions of law-abiding gun owners for the crimes of a few evil maniacs. Undeniably, there is a certain appeal to this response. Gun control is a facile “fix” to a complex problem. 

Americans have owned guns since the founding, but it wasn’t until comparatively recently that mass shootings became a concern. Guns are not the problem. Our culture is. Broken cultures produce broken human beings. For every school shooter, there are thousands of other weak, confused, mentally disturbed men who are drifting away from society. They aren’t dating, aren’t working, and they spend most of their time in their bedrooms playing video games, smoking weed, watching pornography, and stewing in social media echo chambers. 

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Bill to Let State Attorneys Prosecute Philadelphia Gun Crimes Passes Pennsylvania House

Pennsylvania’s House of Representatives voted 151-49 Wednesday for legislation allowing state prosecutors to handle some of Philadelphia’s gun-related cases.

The bill would renew the state attorney general’s “concurrent jurisdiction” with the Philadelphia district attorney, letting the commonwealth shoulder part of the effort to prosecute firearm-related offenses in a city where many feel the job isn’t getting done.

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Pennsylvania House Committee Passes Prosecutorial Measures, Rebuking Krasner

On Tuesday, the Pennsylvania House Judiciary Committee approved term limits for the Philadelphia District Attorney as well as a bill allowing state prosecutors to pursue Philadelphia gun violations.

Both measures have the secondary effect of rebuking the performance of the city’s top prosecutor, Larry Krasner (D), under whose watch violence and crime have skyrocketed. In 2017, 315 murders occurred in Philadelphia and the number rose to an all-time high of 562 last year. Many attribute the increase in crime to Krasner’s tendency to release many defendants charged with illegal gun possession and violent offenses.

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Governor DeWine Launches $10 Million Initiative to Address Gun Violence in Ohio

Ohio Governor Mike DeWine, in connection with Attorney General Dave Yost and State Highway Patrol Superintendent Col. Richard Fambro, announced a new initiative to address gun violence-related crimes.

The state will give $10.5 million to the Ohio Attorney General’s Bureau of Criminal Investigation (BCI) and Ohio State Highway Patrol (OSHP) to improve access to key technology for law enforcement throughout the state.

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Just a Third of Americans View COVID-19 as a Top-Five Priority, Poll Shows

Less than 40% of Americans view the coronavirus as a top-five issue to address in 2022, a new poll shows.

The Associated Press-NORC survey found that just 33% of Americans labeled virus concerns as a top issue, down 16 points from a year ago. On the other hand, 68% of respondents said that the economy was the top issue on which to focus this year, with subtopics ranging from inflation to unemployment and the national debt.

The results come as inflation has hit a multi-decade high and supply chain bottlenecks continue to affect Americans’ lives. However, it also comes as the Omicron coronavirus variant has fueled daily case counts near record-highs, with the U.S. now averaging over 650,000 new infections per day.

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Commentary: 12 Incidents of Defensive Gun Use Prove Armed Civilians That Make Situations Safer

I testified earlier this month at a Senate Judiciary Committee hearing in Chicago on underlying causes of the spikes in gun violence in that city and around the country.

Although Sen. Dick Durbin’s interruptions of my opening statement stole the show in many respects, it shouldn’t be overlooked that the Illinois Democrat also solicited disparaging remarks on the right to keep and bear arms from another witness—Chicago Police Superintendent David Brown.  

In direct response to one of Durbin’s questions, Brown remarked that armed civilians make police officers’ jobs more difficult, and that he never has seen a lawfully armed civilian make a situation safer.

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Memphis Sets New Homicide Record

Memphis set a new record for homicides in a single year this week, topping last year’s record number of homicides as violent crime spikes nationwide. 

“On Thursday, Memphis police reported 333 homicides, meaning the city has officially passed the grim record set in 2020 of 332 homicides. Of those 333 homicides occurring this year — 292 are classified as murders,” Commercial Appeal said. “The remainder of the deaths fall into categories such as justified homicides or instances of negligent manslaughter.”

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Pennsylvania Governor Blocks Conceal-Carry Without a License

Gov. Tom Wolf has vetoed legislation that would have allowed residents to carry a concealed firearm without a license, claiming the measure would exacerbate gun violence in the commonwealth.

“This legislation removes the requirement that an individual obtain a license, and with it, the ability of law enforcement to conduct a background investigation,” Wolf said. “Removal of the licensing background investigation will hinder the ability of law enforcement to prevent individuals who should not be able to carry a firearm concealed from doing so.

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Michigan’s Ingham County Pauses Gun Violence Prevention Program Due to Lack of Participation

Ingham County officials announced that they will pause the implementation of a new program aimed to curb gun violence in the area.

The delay in Advance Peace, the program meant to curb the spike in violent crime, according to city officials, is due to lack of participation from community organizations.

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Lansing to Spend $180,000 in Hopes of Suppressing Youth Gun Violence

The Lansing City Council approved Mayor Andy Schor’s proposal to spend $180,000 from Fiscal Year 2020-2021 on youth activities to suppress an uptick in gun violence.

“We are ready to distribute these carryforward dollars to our partners who have proven success in providing structured activities and mentorship programs that provide options and opportunities for our youth,” Schor said in a statement. “Providing additional dollars to further support these important programs is an immediate step that we can take to help keep our young people safe.”

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Commentary: Despite What Biden Says, Guns Factor in Only a Small Percentage of Violent Crimes

Police Car

In response to sharp increases in violent crime, President Biden stressed again last week that his administration is focused on “stemming the flow of firearms used to commit violent crimes.”  But critics warn that this “guns first” approach ignores a basic fact – about 92% of violent crimes in America do not involve firearms.

Although firearms were used in about 74% of homicides in 2019, they comprise less than 9% of violent crimes in America.

The vast majority of violent offenses – including robberies, rapes and other sex crimes – almost always involve other weapons or no weapons at all.

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Nashville Mayor Offering $150,000 to Nonprofits for Violence Reduction

Nashville Mayor John Cooper announced last week that $150,000 would be going to nonprofits that offered violence reduction strategies. A nonprofit could receive up to $5,000 for their work; the Community Safety Partnership (CSP) Advisory Board will issue recommendations for who receives the grant awards throughout this month and August. 

In a press release, Cooper asserted that this would allow communities to achieve safety solutions tailored to their local needs, particularly for gun violence.

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Virginia Attorney General Candidates Attack Each Other’s Weaknesses at First Debate

Attorney General Mark Herring and Delegate Jason Miyares (R-Virginia Beach) laid out competing visions for the Office of Attorney General in their first debate Tuesday.

Herring said the attorney general should work for safety, justice, equality, and opportunity for all Virginians. “I believe the attorney general should be the people’s lawyer,” Herring said.

In his opening remarks, Miyares cited his experience as a prosecutor, “which I think is so important when you’re running to be Virginia’s top cop,” he said.

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Nashville Mayor, City Council Declare Gun Violence a Public Health Crisis

Nashville Mayor John Cooper declared gun violence a public health crisis, following a resolution from Metro Nashville City Council.

Cooper approved the resolution on Wednesday. The resolution recommended that the city execute further research on the physical and mental health impacts of un violence.

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Commentary: ‘No Evidence’ That Gun Buyback Programs Reduce Gun Violence, New Economic Study Finds

handgun with ammo

Shortly before Christmas in 2018, a woman named Darlene voluntarily turned in a 9mm pistol to the Baltimore Police Department. It was just one of about 500 firearms the department collected that day as part of the city’s gun buyback program, which paid citizens somewhere between $25 and $500 in exchange for their firearms and high-capacity magazines.

Darlene, however, had a confession. She was turning in her 9mm, she told a local news reporter, so she could “upgrade to a better weapon.”

Like what? the reporter asked.

“I don’t know,” Darlene said. “I haven’t quite decided.”

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In Debate, Democratic Gubernatorial Candidates Discuss Gun Violence and the Parole Board

The five Democratic candidates for governor met for the first televised debate on Tuesday evening where they discussed issues including the economic crisis, gun violence, marijuana legalization, the Virginia Parole Board, and vaccine hesitancy. For the most part, the candidates stuck to discussing their own policies, but occasionally turned to attack perceived front-runner McAuliffe.

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Top Republicans Seem Open to Some Kind of Gun Control

Congressional Democrats and President Joe Biden have vowed to act on gun control in the aftermath of two mass shootings that left 18 people dead, but despite their majorities in Congress, Democrats’ proposed bills would be extraordinarily unlikely to overcome a Republican Senate filibuster.

Partisan gridlock on guns is nothing new. No major gun control legislation has passed in over 25 years, when Congress passed a 10-year assault weapons ban under former President Bill Clinton. But despite the constant stalemates, some Republicans have offered alternative plans, meaning that the possibility of some form of bipartisan gun legislation may still exist.

Pennsylvania Republican Sen. Pat Toomey said Tuesday that while he did not think the two bills passed by the House would overcome a filibuster, there was still opportunity for compromise.

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Memphis Launches ‘Group Violence Intervention Program’ to Curb Explosion of Gun Violence

Memphis launched its Group Violence Intervention Program (GVIP) in an effort to reduce violent crimes – namely, gun violence. Officials described it as a “proactive, holistic plan” that adopted models that had purportedly been successful in other cities, though it didn’t specify which ones.

According to the plan, the GVIP will have a czar overseeing three separate branches: a “focused deterrence” coordinator that works with organizations such as the police and social service agencies; a data, policy, community action coordinator that arranges volunteers for various community events; and an intervention coordinator that oversees the outreach workers and violence interrupters. 

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Ohio Cities Announce Lawsuit Against State to Curb Gun Violence

Two of Ohio’s largest cities announced a lawsuit against the Ohio Attorney General’s office, claiming the state fails to keep guns out of the hands of criminals.

In a news conference Monday, Columbus Mayor Andrew Ginther and Dayton Mayor Nan Whaley said gaps in the state’s background check databases allowed thousands of people to buy guns who should not have been able to because of criminal convictions.

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Minneapolis Citizens Desensitized to Crime: Uber Driver Footage Inside Look at Metro’s Reality

Two Minneapolis citizens appear desensitized to their city’s worsening crime in a viral video of a downtown shootout early Sunday morning. The Uber driver’s dash cam recorded the incident.
The interaction between the female passenger and Uber driver is calm despite the violence occurring in front of them.

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Akron Sees Crime Spike Mirroring National Trends

Violent crime in Akron, Ohio has increased, which is mirroring an alarming trend across the country.

Just this week an 8-year girl was murdered and a 14-year-old was wounded in a shooting at a birthday party, according to Fox 8. Furthermore, two men were killed in separate incidents, Fox 8 reported.

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Michigan Group Offers Free Shooting Lessons as Crime Spikes

A gun activism group will be giving free gun training to as many as 1500 women in the Detroit area.

The 9th Annual Laid Free Women’s Shoot will take place on August 15 and August 16. Put on by gun advocacy group Legally Armed In Detroit, the event seeks to train women on the safe handling and usage of a pistol.

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North Minneapolis Democrat Says City Facing ‘Real Emergency’ Amid Ceaseless Violence

A north Minneapolis Democrat said his constituents are “facing a real emergency” as the city continues to experience alarming levels of gun violence.

“Every Minnesotan deserves to be safe in their own neighborhood, but right now many people are experiencing gun violence at unsustainable levels,” Rep. Fue Lee (DFL-Minneapolis) said in a statement released Saturday. “The neighborhoods I represent in north Minneapolis are facing a real emergency.”

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Commentary: Guns Prevent Thousands of Crimes Every Day, Research Shows

It never fails. A split-second after a mass shooting occurs, grandstanders and ideologues issue statements demanding new gun controls—even if the laws already on the books failed or the laws they want would have made no difference. Case in point: the tragic incidents in Dayton, Ohio, and El Paso, Texas, in early August 2019.

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Commentary: Mass Shootings Aren’t Growing More Common – And Evidence Contradicts Common Stereotypes About the Killers

When 22 people were killed in El Paso, Texas, and nine more were killed in Dayton, Ohio, roughly 12 hours later, responses to the tragedy included many of the same myths and stereotypes Americans have grown used to hearing in the wake of a mass shooting.

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Chicago Mayoral Candidate Wants to Sue Indiana and Wisconsin to Stop Gun Violence

Chicago mayoral candidate Gery Chico, a Democrat, recently suggested that he would sue the states of Indiana and Wisconsin in an effort to curb gun violence in his city. During a Thursday candidate’s forum, Chico said that “we have to get these illegal guns off our streets.” “The gang-bangers that…

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