Mayors debate gun control laws


Morrisville Mayor Jackie Holcombe believes stricter laws would keep guns out of the hands of criminals and save the lives of abused women.

Holcombe held a roundtable discussion Wednesday on the issue saying weak gun laws are to blame for the countless number of women who died at the hands of their abusers.

Statistics released by Mayors Against Illegal Guns finds that women in the U.S. are 11 times more likely to be murdered with guns than in any other developed nation.

In states that require background checks, the study found 38 percent fewer women are shot to death by their intimate partners.

"About a quarter of a million guns were kept out of the hands of folks who would have failed criminal background checks had this been in place last year," Holcombe said.

Others say the push by local mayors for stricter gun laws goes too far. Rolesville Mayor Frank Eagles considered joining Mayors Against Illegal Guns, but changed his mind.

"I think all the mayors in Wake County will say we don't want guns in the hands of illegal people. But there's maybe a different approach," Eagles said.

He said there are already laws on the books that are not being enforced like they should. Eagles said he supports background checks on gun sales, but worries stricter control measures will eventually hurt gun owners who obey the law.

"Criminals are going to get to guns whether the good people have them or not," Eagles said.

Holcombe said the checks would apply to private and online gun sales and would close certain loopholes that allow criminals to get access to the weapons.

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