Good morning, Bulletin readers. Today we bring you the next installment of Ricochet, our series examining American lives touched by guns. That story leads your morning roundup.
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WHAT TO KNOW TODAY
NEW from THE TRACE: He tracked terrorists for the FBI. Now his job is to stop school shooters and teen suicides. Between August 2017 and March 2018, a dozen teenagers in Stark County, Ohio, died by suicide. The incidents prompted local leaders to take a hard look at the way their community monitors both student mental health and school safety. The man brought into oversee that effort was David Morgan, a former FBI special agent who once investigated criminal enterprises and international terrorism. “I knew that there were things that schools could do to protect themselves and identify at-risk students sooner, and I wanted to be a part of that,” he tells Ann Givens in her new profile.
Study of military suicides hampered by lack of gun ownership data. The authors of a RAND Corporation report comparing suicides in the Army to those among the general population concluded that “the lack of high-quality data on personally owned firearms… impedes the Army’s ability to study” the issue. They recommend that the service branch “should collect voluntary data on soldiers who own personal firearms and should encourage the CDC or another federal agency to resume collecting” gun ownership data from the general public.
Colorado’s high court will consider whether property owners can be held liable for mass shootings. The case stems from a 2015 rampage at a Planned Parenthood clinic that left three people dead and nine others wounded. Victims and survivors of the shooting say the healthcare provider knew it was a potential target for violence and should have taken security precautions. Trade and business associations are concerned about the case’s impact on insurance and security costs.
Gun rights groups challenge Connecticut’s high-capacity magazine ban. The Second Amendment Foundation, Connecticut Citizens Defense League, and two gun owners filed suit in U.S. District Court, arguing the state’s 2013 law is unconstitutional and limits residents’ right to self-defense. The state attorney general says he’s confident about the case, as the Supreme Court has held that states can regulate guns.
Another gun reform group picks Joe Biden. The gun-reform group Giffords joined Everytown for Gun Safety and the Brady Campaign in endorsing the former vice president, who on Tuesday cemented his status as Democratic frontrunner after big wins in several primaries. (Everytown provides grants to The Trace through its nonpolitical arm. Here’s our list of major donors and our policy on editorial independence.)
Incarcerated Americans are less likely to support an assault weapons ban. In a first-of-its-kind survey, The Marshall Project polled more than 8,000 people in American prisons on a variety of political issues. They found that less than half of the self-identified Republican inmates supported an assault weapons ban (compared to 50 percent of GOP voters, according to an October Pew poll); while a slim majority of those who identify as Democrats supported a ban (compared to 88 percent of Democratic voters from the same Pew poll).
Nearly 100,000 Americans who are banned from owning guns are estimated to own firearms anyway, according to a new study from the University of California/Davis Violence Prevention Research Program. — Injury Prevention