KANSAS CITY, Mo. — Kansas City’s new Mayor Quinton Lucas is taking steps to reduce violence in the community.
On Thursday, he introduced two city ordinances that deal with minors possessing guns. The first will ban the possession of firearms by anyone under the age of 18. The second would ban the transfer of a firearm to a minor. Click here and here to view the full ordinances.
The proposals come after two deadly mass shootings in Ohio and Texas, and a homicide in the Crossroads on First Friday.
“What we’re trying to do is limit minors picking up guns, end them getting used to them, trying to end a culture of violence, trying to end a culture of gun possession,” Lucas said.
Right now, federal and state law bans minors from owning handguns but Lucas said those cases don’t usually result in charges.
“What we’re trying to do is create a tool that would create a municipal ordinance violation, giving police the opportunity to arrest, to seize a firearm, to have some standing to do it in a way that’s not being enforced presently with the way state law is read and federal charges aren’t being brought,” he said.
Right now, Lucas said if Kansas City police officers arrest a minor for having a handgun, and federal charges aren’t filed, in theory they have to give the gun back.
“I’m not saying it will change everything about a 15-year-old’s mind, but what it allows an officer to do now, instead of having to go through a list of questions, they say we have the authority to make arrests and seize weapons,” Lucas said.
Lucas introduced the ordinances to the City Council Thursday afternoon. They’ll have to make their way through committee and then go up for a vote before they would take effect.