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Posts tagged as “gun reform”

Gun BuyBack takes 845 guns off Street

Officers from HPD and HCSO check guns turned in.

HOUSTON- Due to an overwhelming response from the public, the One Safe Houston Gun Buyback collected 845 firearms and distributed nearly $100,000 in gift cards on Saturday, July 30. As a result of the unprecedented response, the event, which began at 8 a.m. and was scheduled to end at noon, did not conclude until almost 7 p.m., when the last person collected a handful of gift cards.Earlier in the day, dozens of vehicles were turned away due to demand and long lines. However, more than 150 people were given priority vouchers for a place in line at the next gun buyback. Mayor Sylvester Turner and the Houston Police Department will announce a date soon for a second event.

“We used best practices to plan and hold today’s event. I did not know what to expect, and the turnout was overwhelming,” said Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner. “The turnout demonstrates there are too many guns on our streets, and people want to get them out of their possession. The gun buyback is not the only solution, but we can and will make our streets safer and help reduce gun violence.”

The successful event was a collaboration between Mayor Turner, Harris County Commissioner Rodney Ellis, U.S. Rep. Sheila Jackson Lee, and the Houston Police Department.

City, County join in Gun BuyBack program

HOUSTON – As part of his One Safe Houston initiative, Mayor Sylvester Turner is holding a Gun Buyback program to reduce the number of guns on our streets. The City – County Partnership will reduce the number of Unwanted Guns on our streets.

To make Houston’s homes and streets safer and free from violence, Harris County Commissioner Rodney Ellis, Houston Mayor Sylvester Turner’s Office and Police Chief Troy Finner announce a gun buyback program that will take place July 30. With no questions asked, residents can turn in firearms in exchange for gift cards in the amount of $50, $100, $150 and $200 – depending on the type of gun. It’s part of a coordinated effort to reduce violent crimes.

The event, in partnership with Harris County Precinct One Commissioner Rodney Ellis, the Houston Police Department, and Wheeler Avenue Baptist Church, will take place from 8 a.m. – noon on Saturday, July 30, at 3826 Wheeler Ave.

We must act to stop Gun Violence

COUNTY CONNECTION
By Harris County Judge Lina Hidalgo

Over the past month, our nation has yet again endured violent deaths from mass shootings and gun violence. In Buffalo, we all witnessed the brutal attack driven by racism and hate that left 13 people dead at a grocery store. 17 people were shot during a mass shooting in downtown Milwaukee. And we are all still mourning the loss of two teachers and 19 innocent children murdered at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde. This violence shows no sign of letting up – between May 24th, the day of the Uvalde tragedy, and June 6th, there have been 33 additional mass shootings, including multiple mass shootings here in Harris County. No one is immune from this bloody plague.

Today, our nation and our county is in the midst of a vital conversation about violent crime and what needs to be done to prevent it. The truth is, we cannot talk about addressing violent crime without talking about the role that guns play in fueling it. On the same day as the tragedy in Uvalde, we released new data from Harris County’s Institute for Forensic Sciences from which the conclusion could not be more clear – we are not just suffering from a rise in homicides, but also from a rise in the percentage of homicides caused by guns. In 2018, gunshot wounds caused 76% of homicides in Harris County. In 2021, that number was 84%. This year’s percentage is at 87%. And we aren’t unique. Statewide, the rate of gun homicides in Texas increased 90% between 2011 and 2020, from a little over 3 deaths per 100,000 people to about 6 deaths per 100,000.

Cornyn’s Senate Panel drafts new limited Gun Safety laws

WASHINGTON – U.S. Senators John Cornyn (R-Texas), Chris Murphy (D-Conn.), Thom Tillis (R-N.C.), Kyrsten Sinema (D-Ariz.), along with Richard Blumenthal (D-Conn.), Roy Blunt (R-Mo.), Cory Booker (D- N.J.), Richard Burr (R-N.C.), Bill Cassidy (R-La.), Susan Collins (R-Maine), Chris Coons (D-Del.), Lindsey Graham (RS.C.), Martin Heinrich (D-N.M.), Mark Kelly (D-Ariz.), Angus King (I-Maine), Joe Manchin (D-W.Va.), Rob Portman (R-Ohio), Mitt Romney (R-Utah), Debbie Stabenow (D-Mich.), and Pat Toomey (R-Pa.) issued the following statement:

“Today, we are announcing a commonsense, bipartisan proposal to protect America’s children, keep our schools safe, and reduce the threat of violence across our country. Families are scared, and it is our duty to come together and get something done that will help restore their sense of safety and security in their communities. Our plan increases needed mental health resources, improves school safety and support for students, and helps ensure dangerous criminals and those who are adjudicated as mentally ill can’t purchase weapons. Most importantly, our plan saves lives while also protecting the constitutional rights of law-abiding Americans. We look forward to earning broad, bipartisan support and passing our commonsense proposal into law.”

The proposal includes:

Abbott orders School Safety Study instead of Special Session on guns

Governor Greg Abbott, center, in Uvalde after the mass murder of 21 persons, announcing action that Texas will take to address the problem of mass shootings. Others at the press conference, L to R, Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick, Senator Ted Cruz, and House Speaker Dade Phelan. Abbott charged the leadership of the Senate and House with studying solutions that could be enacted by the State to curb future massacres.

AUSTIN – In lieu of calling a special session of the legislature to deal with new regulations to curb mass shootings, as requested by several state legislators, Governor Greg Abbott today sent a joint letter to Lieutenant Governor Dan Patrick and Speaker Dade Phelan requesting the Texas legislative leaders convene special legislative committees following last week’s tragic shooting at Robb Elementary School in Uvalde. The special legislative committees will be charged with examining and developing legislative recommendations on school safety, mental health, social media, police training, firearm safety, and more.

GCCISD Superintendent’s message on school safety

SUPERINTENDENT RANDAL O’BRIEN

In light of the events in Uvalde ISD, we would like to share Dr. O’Brien’s message to the community:

The tragedy that occurred in Uvalde ISD is truly devastating. Our hearts go out to the families and educators that have experienced this horrific crisis.

School safety is on the forefront of our minds at this moment, as it is for every school district. Goose Creek CISD has implemented measures that have strengthened the safety and security of our schools over the past few years.

Uvalde mass shooting stirs up Gun Control debate

A Texas town, and a nation, mourn for the senseless killings of 21 victims in Uvalde.

PROTESTS MOUNT AT NRA CONVENTION

HOUSTON – Protestors outside the NRA (National Rifle Association) national convention at GRB Convention Center this weekend, blamed the proliferation of guns and lack of regulations in Texas and nationwide with the increase in mass shootings, as evidenced recently in Texas with mass murders in Uvalde, Sante Fe, Sutherland Springs, El Paso, and Midland.

Last week’s school shooting of 19 victims at Robb Elementary in Uvalde has focused the public’s attention on the need for government leaders to increase restrictions on gun ownership, rather than loosen rules as has happened recently in Texas.

Speakers at the NRA Convention in Houston last weekend included Donald Trump and Ted Cruz, but Governor Abbott withdrew and sent a recorded message.

Speakers at the NRA convention talked of the increased safety by arming the public, but most public opinion rejected that theory, and called for action from government to bring a reduction in shootings. Proponents of restrictions in gun sales and military style weapons, point to experience in other countries, such as Australia and New Zealand, where total bans on guns has brought a sharp reduction in killings, both mass shootings and individual deaths.

Even in Texas, they point out that a ban on assault weapons was effective, but when it expired the number of deaths from mass shootings increased sharply.

Sen. Carol Alvarado on Gun Safety Reform

Austin, TX — The Texas Senate Democratic Caucus sent the following letter to Governor Abbott:

Dear Governor Abbott:

The members of the Texas Senate Democratic Caucus urge you to immediately call an emergency special session to address gun violence in Texas in the wake of this latest gut-wrenching tragedy. We demand that this special session include passage of legislation that would:

• Raise the minimum age to purchase a firearm to 21;

• Require universal background checks for all firearm sales;

• Implement “red flag” laws to allow the temporary removal of firearms from those who are an imminent danger to themselves or others;

• Require a “cooling off” period for the purchase of a firearm; and

• Regulate civilian ownership of high capacity magazines.

Community members concerned about new “Permitless Carry” law

Participating in the on-line discussion were (L-R) Houston Police Department Executive Assistant Chief Larry Satterwhite, Pct. 2 Commissioner Adrian Garcia (a former Harris County Sheriff), and Sheriff’s Office Chief Deputy Edison Toquica. The public was invited to call in with their views also.

Commissioner Garcia moderates discussion with law enforcement

Harris County Commissioner Adrian Garcia led a discussion last Wednesday, September 1 on the concerns surrounding the new law. The panel consisted of law enforcement officials and domestic violence advocates, among others.

Law enforcement officials want people to make sure they understand the law before doing anything that could put themselves or others in danger.

“Make sure that you understand the law and make sure you get trained to use that weapon,” Harris County Sheriff’s Office Chief Deputy Toquica said.

“With permit-less carry officially going into effect September 1, the state’s record shows loosening weapon restrictions only make living in Texas more dangerous.”

CONGRESSMAN CRENSHAW IN CROSBY: Solutions for terrorism that keep due process

Dan Crenshaw explained his support of TAPS and problems with red flag laws but could not cite legislation that would effectively shut down domestic terrorism. (PHOTO BY LEWIS SPEARMAN)

CROSBY – Dan Crenshaw R. 2nd U.S. Congressional District was inside Crosby Church last Saturday, Sept. 7, for a town hall style meeting to answer questions about what he reportedly said about “red flag laws” and the T.A.P.S. act, a grant program to enable law enforcement to focus on probable threats rather than chase after silly exaggerations.

Having defined the TAPS act as a resource for law enforcement that does not change due process, he indicated that it is legislation he supports, he moved on to “red flag” laws.