Good morning, Bulletin readers. Less than a week after the deadly white supremacist attack in New Zealand, the country is taking swift action to restrict a broad category of guns that have been repeatedly used as a tool of terror. Commentators in the United States have noted the contrast with our government’s response to mass shootings.
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WHAT TO KNOW TODAY
NEW from THE TRACE: The security guard accused of stealing weapons from an ATF facility has skipped court. A judge issued a bench warrant after the man accused of pilfering and reselling firearms and parts from the West Virginia warehouse where he worked failed to appear at a hearing yesterday. According to a federal indictment, the weapons in his possession included a fully automatic submachine gun off-limits to civilians. Alex Yablon has the latest.
The NRA turned over 1,500 pages of documents to a congressional panel investigating Trump. The House Judiciary Committee had asked for materials related to the gun group’s contacts with Russians and with Trump’s campaign officials as part of a sweeping investigation into the president and his associates. The National Rifle Association’s lawyers declined to comment on the contents of the records provided. We’ve updated our NRA investigations tracker. There are a total of six known active inquiries into the National Rifle Association right now. We’re keeping tabs.
New Zealand moves to ban semiautomatic guns. Yesterday afternoon, Prime Minister Jacinda Ardern announced decisive and dramatic changes to her country’s gun laws in response to last week’s mosque shootings. The package includes a buyback program for owners of military-style rifles and a prohibition on parts that can covert guns to semiauto. “I absolutely believe there will be a common view amongst New Zealanders, those who use guns for legitimate purposes, and those who have never touched one, that the time for the mass and easy availability of these weapons must end,” she said. “And today they will.” The reforms are expected to take effect early next month.
A toddler in Tennessee was shot while playing in her backyard. Police say 2-year-old Ariel Salaices is fighting for her life after she was hit by a bullet while playing on the swings with her little brother on Friday. Police are still searching for the shooter and have advised neighbors to be careful when shooting guns near homes. “If you’re using a firearm and doing target practice or hunting, make sure you’re looking beyond where you’re shooting,” the sheriff said. “Because that bullet may not stop where you want it to.”
A woman was killed by her abusive ex a week after she pressed charges against him. Police say Neyaka Oliver, 27, had exhausted every legal option available to her to break free from her violent relationship, including filing a criminal complaint after her ex-boyfriend choked and threatened her. Just a week later, the Wisconsin preschool teacher was fatally shot by her abuser, who then killed himself. From The Trace archives: Evidence shows that the period immediately after filing a temporary restraining order can be the most dangerous for victims. But temporary restraining orders lead to an immediate gun ban in fewer than half the states. Wisconsin is not one of them.
ONE LAST THING
Twenty years later, Columbine survivors are still recovering. In 1999, little was known about the psychological hurdles survivors of school violence might face, and resources for dealing with the specific trauma of a school shooting were scarce. The survivors of the Columbine shooting have gone on to become studies in the long-term damage these types of events can cause. According to researchers who have interviewed them, many still grapple with issues like panic disorder, substance abuse, and depression. “I’ve had people tell me, ‘It’s been all these years, just get over it,’” said Amanda Stair, 35, who was a high school sophomore when she lived through the attack. “But it’s not something that you just get over.”