- Associated Press - Wednesday, August 27, 2014

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) - In a story Aug. 22 about firearm safety bills, The Associated Press reported erroneously that SB505 would require law enforcement officers to check California’s gun database when conducting welfare checks on individuals. In fact, the bill had been amended to require local law enforcement agencies to adopt policies that encourage officers to check the databases. A corrected version of the story is below:

Lawmakers pass firearm safety, ammunition bills

Bills would urge gun records search during welfare checks, adopt bullet sales tracking


Associated Press

SACRAMENTO, Calif. (AP) - California lawmakers on Friday acted on bills that tackle firearm safety and add rules for ammunition sales.

The Senate unanimously passed SB505 by Sen. Hannah-Beth Jackson, D-Santa Barbara. It would require law enforcement agencies to develop policies that encourage officers to search the state’s database of gun purchases when checking on whether someone may be a danger to themselves or others. The bill originally required officers to conduct the database search but was amended to give local agencies more control of their own policies.

Jackson said searching the gun database could help prevent tragedies such as the May shooting rampage near the University of California, Santa Barbara. Her bill now goes to the governor.

“This bill would help ensure that law enforcement agencies are using all the tools available to them to gather potentially life-saving information for themselves and others,” Jackson said in a statement.

Santa Barbara County Sheriff’s Office deputies were criticized for not searching Elliot Rodger’s apartment during a welfare check in April after his parents became concerned about his postings on YouTube. The 22-year-old community college student killed six university students and himself in Isla Vista weeks later.

A database search could have helped them better assess the danger Rodger posed to himself and others, Jackson said.

Separately, the Assembly approved changes to a bill creating a way to better track ammunition.

SB53 by Sen. Kevin de Leon, D-Los Angeles, requires ammunition vendors to be licensed and people buying ammunition to pass background checks. According to his office, the state Department of Justice will be required to keep a list of all authorized ammunition purchasers to make sure ammunition will only be accessible to lawful gun owners and not dangerous criminals.

De Leon’s office stated that while California has enacted legislation to keep guns out of the hands of criminals; little has been done to prevent them from getting ammunition. Supporters estimated that millions of rounds of ammunition are being sold to criminals each year.

The amendments passed 42-26 and will be voted on by the full Assembly next week.

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