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Gun bill aims at juveniles

Ryan Carter

A local legislator’s bill that would prohibit children convicted of

firearm offenses from buying or holding guns until they are 30 passed

the Assembly on Thursday.

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If passed by the state Senate and signed by the governor, the bill

-- written by Assemblyman Dario Frommer (D-Burbank) -- would prohibit

juveniles convicted of carrying a concealed weapon or other offenses

from obtaining a gun until they are older.

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Existing law prohibits convicted juveniles from obtaining firearms

until they are 30, but only if they have been convicted of a violent

felony such as murder. This bill puts more teeth into the law,

Frommer said.

“I’m gratified we had virtually unanimous support for this bill,”

Frommer said. “It closes a loophole in the law, which has given

incentives to gangbangers to let younger kids carry their weapons

because the older gang members know that if the kid is charged with

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an offense, it will never show up on their record as a juvenile.”

The bill had bipartisan support, Frommer said. Still, opposition

has been mustered. When the bill was introduced earlier this year,

representatives from the California Rifle & Pistol Assn. spoke out

against it.

“To the extent that this is going to make it impossible for those

people who make an honest mistake to own a gun, we’re against it,”

said Chuck Michel, spokesman for the California Rifle and Pistol

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Assn. told the Leader in March.

Michel, who could not be reached by phone late Thursday, has said

legislators are trying to pass gun laws that “net the dogs along with

the wolves.”

Frommer introduced the bill on the heels of an incident in Los

Angeles in which an adult gang member, who legally had a gun, was

shot by a rival. The gang member was injured and indicated to police

that he would retaliate. Even though the gang member was convicted of

having a firearm as a child, his gun could not be confiscated, he

said.


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