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Gun control debate renewed as both sides agree mass shooting could happen in Utah

October 6, 2017

by Lisa Nico, KUTV

 

(KUTV) Utah gun control laws would do little to stop an attack, like the one in Las Vegas, from happening here, agreed both a gun lobbyist and a liberal state senator.

But that doesn’t mean we need tighter gun control laws, said Clark Aposhian of the Utah Shooting Sports Council.

"When you get down to it, crime is just a collection of individuals breaking the law," Aposhian said.

 

Utah Sen. Jim Dabakis, a Salt Lake City Democrat, encouraged Utah lawmakers to embrace moderate views.

 

"Registration and background checks. There are ways we should be changing those laws," Dabakis said.

 

Both parties agreed mental healthcare needed to be a top priority if gun control laws are to be reformed.

 

They also agreed a person committed to causing harm will do so.

Utah Sen. Jim Dabakis, a Salt Lake City Democrat, encouraged Utah lawmakers to embrace moderate views.

 

"Registration and background checks. There are ways we should be changing those laws," Dabakis said.

 

Both parties agreed mental healthcare needed to be a top priority if gun control laws are to be reformed.

They also agreed a person committed to causing harm will do so.

 

"If someone had that kind of evil intentions, I don't think the absence of a firearm is going to do anything,” Aposhian said.

 

However, the degree of harm, Dabakis indicated, could possibly be limited if there were less firearms involved.

 

"There are disturbed people everywhere that for whatever reason go out and commit mass murder. The difference between what happens in Britain, for example, is that they can't get guns. So they take knives out!” Dabakis said.

 

Among the senator’s concerns was the way the sale of multiple guns is tracked.

 

Aposhian explained the sale of multiple handguns by a single registered dealer to a single person within five days is reported to local and federal entities.

 

"We don't have that for rifles. We don't have that for long guns. But it is for all handguns," said Aposhian.

 

Dabakis expressed concern over the ease of accessibility of high capacity automatic firearms to the public.

 

"It's kind of ingrained in the Utah culture: guns. But, Utahns don't want to get killed when they go to a movie theater and they don't want to get killed when they go to a concert!"

 

In comments on the mass shooting in nearby Las Vegas, Utah Representative Joel Briscoe (D – Salt Lake) said, “This shooting was disturbingly terrible because of the amount of death caused by a single person. No one should be able to modify guns to shoot 90 bullets in mere seconds. Only the military and law enforcement should have automatic weapons. With this close-to-home tragedy, now is a good time to examine what reasonable limits should be placed on responsible gun ownership. We should examine Utah law to make sure we don’t aid and abet such a horrific crime in the future.”

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