Rounds

News and notes on guns in America

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A makeshift memorial for Tynirah Borum, 3, who was killed by a stray bullet in Philadelphia in 2014. [AP/Matt Rourke]

Daily Bulletin: Where Gun Violence is Changing Parents’ Halloween Plans

Good morning, Bulletin readers. Sports stadiums and arenas have loomed as one of the next frontiers in the fight over concealed guns in public spaces. A court case in Georgia might just accelerate that showdown for the NFL. That story and more, below. 

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WHAT TO KNOW TODAY

12 people were shot when someone opened fire at a Halloween party in California. Three people died in the Tuesday night incident in Long Beach. The culprit is at-large. A Los Angeles Times editorial writer lamented the sparse attention the crime has received, in contrast with the widespread media coverage given to mass shootings in schools, workplaces, or churches: “It’s the everyday nature of this incident that should offend the public consciousness.”

A bipartisan congressional bill enlists firearm sellers in safe gun storage. The Prevent Family Fire Act of 2019 would offer incentives to gun retailers who encourage customers to buy gun safes. A Democratic sponsor, Mike Levin of California, told CNN, “I felt it was very important in this environment to try to get something done in a bipartisan manner to reduce gun violence.”

Report calls for total revamp of Chicago murder investigations. An exhaustive review by the Police Executive Research Forum found that homicide detectives there lack basic tools necessary to solve murders. Among the findings: Investigators are forced to share computers and vehicles, and only recently got their own cell phones. The deputy chief of detectives told The Chicago Tribune that a lieutenant would be charged with implementing the recommended changes. In January, The Trace and BuzzFeed News published an analysis of homicide and shooting clearance rates using data from two dozen big-city police departments. Chicago was at the bottom, making arrests in just 22 percent of fatal shootings in 2018. —Sarah Ryley, staff writer

FBI director cites threat of “lone offender shootings.” Director Christopher Wray testified before the House Homeland Security Committee on Wednesday that shootings perpetrated by lone gunmen are the “dominant lethal mode for domestic violent extremist attacks,” adding: “More deaths were caused by domestic violent extremists than international terrorists in recent years.”

Parents in one high-crime Philadelphia neighborhood are afraid to take their kids trick-or-treating. Nearly two weeks ago in the city’s Kensington neighborhood, a 2-year-old girl was killed by bullets that struck her home; the next day, an 11-month-old boy was shot four times in a car. Some parents there are taking their kids to other parts of the city for Halloween, fearful that gun violence won’t take a break tonight. A criminal justice associate professor told the Inquirer that fear-induced isolation can erode neighborhood cohesion and the sense of public space.

Parents in Chicago worry about kids’ safety as teachers’ strike grinds on. The labor stoppage is now in its eleventh school day. One parent told ABC 7 Chicago, “As a black parent raising a teenager, I don’t necessarily want him [her son] out and about because anything could happen.”

A gun rights group claims a recent court ruling voids the Atlanta Falcons’ gun ban. Earlier this month, the Georgia Supreme Court ruled that groups that lease public property don’t have the authority to ban guns in that venue. A lawyer for the plaintiff, GeorgiaCarry.org, argued that the ruling invalidates a gun ban at Mercedes-Benz Stadium, which is leased from the Georgia World Congress Authority. A Falcons spokesperson said the gun ban remains in full compliance with state law.

🚨The Trace is hiring.🚨 We’re looking for a Chicago beat reporter to identify and follow up on the most important developments in the fight to reduce shootings in the city. The deadline to apply is November 13. Read more here.

DATA POINT

Prompted by mass shooting fears, at least 60 U.S. school districts by 2018 had spent over $1 million to monitor what their students were saying on public social media accounts. [The Guardian]