Rounds

News and notes on guns in America

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[GIANRIGO MARLETTA/AFP/Getty Images]

Daily Bulletin: An Anti-Gun-Violence Worker Killed by the Scourge He Fought

Good morning, Bulletin readers. As the Supreme Court prepares to hear a major case next week on a former New York City law restricting the transporting of guns in public spaces, the justices just declined another appeal regarding unregulated online firearm sales. We’ve got that story and more in your Tuesday briefing.

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WHAT TO KNOW TODAY

The Supreme Court declined to hear a suit against Armslist over a Milwaukee spa shooting. The decision leaves in a place a Wisconsin Supreme Court decision blocking a suit brought by the daughter of one of the victims of the 2012 shooting. The state court ruled that the operators of the firearms classified website were not responsible for taking steps to prevent sales to people banned from owning guns. The shooter in question was under a court order that prohibited him from possessing firearms.

Chicago police say they’ve recovered more than 10,000 illegal guns this year. Police Superintendent Eddie Johnson said the number marks a department record. More than 4,000 people have been charged with gun-related offenses in the city this year, a nearly 10 percent increase from previous years. “We really need systematic change to prevent these guns from ever finding their way into the city,” Johnson said. “Until our legislators get serious, we’re going to continue talking about this.” Chicago is on pace to record its third annual decline in homicides, but at least 414 people have been killed as a result of gun violence in the city this year, according to a tally by The Chicago Sun-Times.

A D.C. man training to become a violence interrupter was fatally shot. An unknown gunman killed Clarence Venable on Friday just outside a training session for his new job with the city’s “Cure the Streets” program. The D.C. attorney general’s office launched the violence prevention initiative in 2018 and expanded it this year to include more staff members. The head of the nonprofit that hired Venable told The Washington Post he was excelling in his role. “We could put him anywhere, and he was able to connect to anybody in any situation,” he said. Violence interruption is one of several strategies that has been associated with reductions in violent crime.

Missouri’s Republican governor expresses openness to modest gun restrictions after meeting with city mayors. For the fourth time, Mike Parson met with the top officials of St. Louis, Kansas City, Columbia, and Springfield, as well as city police chiefs. Parson said he would push the Legislature to pass measures to keep guns from domestic abusers, violent offenders, and minors when it reconvenes in January. The officials also want more funding for witness protection and community mental health treatment. Parson called the gun measures “common sense” and “doable” for state GOP lawmakers who last week omitted provisions addressing gun access from their 2020 crime-reduction plan. Republican Senate President Pro Tem Dave Schatz said then that taking guns from “law-abiding citizens” was not an option.

The remaining child victim of a family murder-suicide in San Diego has died. The 9-year-old succumbed to his injuries over the weekend, an uncle told The San Diego-Union Tribune. On November 16, a San Diego man killed his estranged wife and his other three children. The woman had been granted a temporary restraining order after his repeated harassment.

A Texas county is making available 17,000 free gun locks. Bexar County, which includes San Antonio, unveiled the program on Monday. The county grant also funds the parallel “Be Smart, Keep Children Safe, Secure Your Guns” ad campaign on buses. “We just want to make sure the kiddos are safe,” Bexar Country Sheriff Javier Salazar said. “It’s not a matter of taking anybody’s guns.” The program was one of several new gun safety initiatives the county announced in September.

New Jersey residents hosted a rally to protest gun violence. Residents in Burlington County hosted a “city walk” on Sunday to honor those lost to gun violence during the past two decades. Burlington saw its second homicide of the year two weeks ago, which motivated the turnout.

Two new Philadelphia theater productions will put the spotlight on gun violence. The one-woman shows, each set to debut over the next few weeks, integrate gun violence, domestic abuse, and loss. “It was very important for me to do this play in the hopes that I could help someone in this situation,” said Philadelphia actor Amanda Schoonover of her role in the play “Natural Shocks.”

DATA POINT

Hawaii registered just 3.38 gun deaths per 100,000 people between 2008 and 2017, the lowest rate in the nation, according to a recent Center for American Progress analysis of data from the FBI, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives. The Honolulu Star Advertiser