Pittsburgh Is Moving Forward With Gun Reform After the Tree of Life Shooting. But the Legal Battle Is Just Beginning

Pittsburgh Is Moving Forward With Gun Reform After the Tree of Life Shooting. But the Legal Battle Is Just Beginning

Gun Rights

Pittsburgh’s City Council has approved three controversial gun reform bills months after a gunman shot and killed 11 people at the city’s Tree of Life synagogue. But the votes set up the city for a number of legal challenges. The 6-3 final vote on Tuesday on a package of three gun control bills comes about five months after the deadly synagogue shooting. The legislation would restrict military-style assault weapons (including the AR-15, which authorities have said the Tree of Life shooter used during the massacre ), ban the use of armor-piercing ammunition and high-capacity magazines, and allow guns to be seized temporarily from people deemed to be a danger to themselves or others. Councilwoman Erika Strassburger, who introduced the reforms with Councilman Corey O’Connor in December, tells TIME that the Tree of Life shooting marked a turning point in the city’s reckoning with gun laws, noting that activists and politicians in the region have been fighting to reduce violence for decades. “This is not just about mass shootings like the ones that have happened in our district,” she says. “It runs the whole gamut of gun violence. Homicides kill people on a weekly basis and it’s just too much.” Twelve people so far have died this year in shooting deaths in Allegheny County, whose county seat is Pittsburgh, according to The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette, which compiled data from the county medical examiner as well as local police reports. City officials said in January that, in 2018, Pittsburgh had 55 homicides, […]

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