Featured Story

After her son was shot and killed in 2013, Wynona Harper began channeling her grief into gun violence prevention, work she took on by pouring care into her Penn Hills, Pennsylvania, community. Through Jamar’s Place of Peace, the organization she started in memory of her son, she’s spent years organizing distributions of Thanksgiving turkeys, socks, and book bags, and assisting neighbors with basic needs like shelter and utility costs. This week, she celebrated the grand opening of her nonprofit’s new permanent home, offering free dinner, produce, clothes, and gun locks to any in attendance who needed them. [Pittsburgh Union Progress]

The Trajectory

In November, the Supreme Court heard arguments in a case that poses perhaps the single greatest threat to gun restrictions meant to protect victims of domestic firearm violence since those laws were put in place decades ago. U.S. v. Rahimi challenges a federal law that bans people under final domestic violence protection orders from possessing guns. While justices appeared poised to uphold the law, that’s not a certainty — and the consequences of overturning it could be severe.

Research shows that gun laws meant to protect domestic violence victims can work. And studies have found that more comprehensive gun restrictions — not just those related to domestic violence — help keep victims safe, too. For the latest edition of The Trajectory, The Trace’s Chip Brownlee examines the evidence that gun regulations can reduce domestic violence and the state laws that fill the gaps in federal protections.

What to Know Today

Congressional leaders released a government funding bill of more than 1,000 pages that they plan to pass before a Friday deadline to avert a government shutdown. The legislation would cut the budget for the resource-deprived ATF and includes a controversial provision that would prohibit Veterans Affairs officials from submitting veterans’ names to the FBI’s background check system without a judge’s consent. [NBC/Military Times/Roll Call

The trial against James Crumbley, whose son killed four students at Oxford High School in Michigan in 2021, began Tuesday; he is charged with involuntary manslaughter. Prosecutors are likely to focus on Crumbley’s purchase and storage of the gun his son used to carry out the shooting. Last month, his wife was convicted of the same charges he now faces. [Detroit Free Press

A growing number of unhoused people in Portland, Oregon, are being killed by gunfire. City leaders are considering directing an existing violence interruption program, Ceasefire, to pivot some of its services — like street outreach and case management — toward homeless encampments to quell the killings. [The Oregonian

In testimony before a Maine commission investigating the mass shooting at a bar and bowling alley in Lewiston last year, survivors expressed outrage at authorities’ failure to prevent the massacre despite the “many red flags” that preceded it. “It sounds like the military, the police officers, many people were warned that this was coming,” said Steven R. Richards-Kretlow, who was playing cornhole at the bar when he saw the shooter open fire. “I don’t understand why the police didn’t take his guns from him so he was not a danger to others.” [The Boston Globe

The Mississippi House passed a ban on the manufacture and possession of machine gun conversion devices, creating a state offense in addition to an existing federal prohibition. The bill is now subject to approval by the state Senate. [Mississippi Free Press]

Data Point

33 percent — the proportion of homicides recorded in Portland so far this year that involved an unhoused person. In all of 2023, that figure was 19 percent; in 2011, it was 11 percent. [The Oregonian]