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Gun Violence

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NEWS
December 20, 2012 | By Allison Steele and Robert Moran, Inquirer Staff Writers
Philadelphia Police Commissioner Charles H. Ramsey has been asked to participate in a national discussion as part of President Obama's efforts to address gun violence in the aftermath of the school shootings in Newtown, Conn. On Wednesday, Obama named Vice President Biden to lead a group expected to come up with recommendations and proposals in the next few weeks. Ramsey will travel to Washington on Thursday to offer his input, as will other law enforcement leaders from around the country and federal officials.
NEWS
May 18, 2000 | by Bruce Shapiro
They might not have hit the million mark, but the hundreds of thousands of demonstrators who showed up in Washington for the Mother's Day gun-control march were impressive by any historical or political standard. In decades of pushing and pulling between gun controllers and gun promoters, there has been nothing like this event. It was possible, for a day, to feel that everything had changed, that gun control's political moment had arrived. And some things really have changed.
NEWS
December 20, 1991 | By JOSHUA HORWITZ
Gun violence has reached crisis proportions throughout the United States. Once a problem thought to be confined to large urban centers, gun violence now has spread to smaller, historically safer cities, such as Milwaukee, Wis., and Charlotte, N.C., both of which will set firearms fatality records in 1991. Even small towns in rural America are not immune from this violence, as the recent massacre of 23 people by a crazed gunman in Killeen, Texas, has horribly demonstrated. This year, firearms violence is expected to account for 33,000 deaths and more than 250,000 injuries.
NEWS
December 21, 2012
IT SHOULD TAKE Vice President Joe Biden about three minutes to round up a list of ideas to present the president for proposals to reduce gun violence. Many ideas - like banning assault weapons and restricting high-capacity gun magazines - have been around for years. Biden would also do well to consult the list of federal legislation being pushed by Mayors Against Illegal Guns. These include a fix to the gun-checks act that would update the database of people barred from owning handguns, and close the loophole that allows people to buy guns at gun shows without background checks.
NEWS
December 7, 2007 | By Robert Moran, Inquirer Staff Writer
In recent weeks, lively Philadelphia nightclubs have been hit by deadly gun violence. A gun battle erupted among club-goers leaving Dreemz Ultra Lounge in Old City last month, leaving one man dead and another critically wounded. A man fired a gun outside Koko Bongo in University City on Oct. 28, striking a police officer in the leg and grazing a bystander. Police shot and killed the gunman. Police from the University of Pennsylvania killed a man inside Club Wizzards at 38th and Chestnut Streets on Nov. 26 after he shot and critically injured the club's DJ. As the city struggles with a proliferation of illegal guns while trying to promote a thriving night scene, fun has turned into mayhem in neighborhoods otherwise considered safe.
NEWS
April 1, 2005 | By Natalie Pompilio INQUIRER STAFF WRITER
Gov. Rendell signed an executive order yesterday establishing a 21-person commission to investigate the recent surge in gun violence throughout the state. The commission's report, due by May 16, is expected to suggest changes to the law and how money can best be used to curb the bloodshed. Rendell also said he would assign 20 state troopers to a federal task force that deals with interstate gun trafficking. In the last month, incidents in Philadelphia, York and Pittsburgh have brought the issue of gun violence to the forefront.
NEWS
January 10, 2013 | ASSOCIATED PRESS
WASHINGTON - Vice President Joe Biden on Wednesday vowed urgent action against gun violence in America, pledging steps by the Obama administration that he said could "take thousands of people out of harm's way" and improve the safety of millions more. But a day ahead of a meeting with the National Rifle Association, which has sunk past gun-control efforts and is opposing any new ones, Biden signaled that the administration is mindful of political realities that could imperil sweeping gun-control legislation, and is willing to settle for something less.
NEWS
December 19, 2012 | By Dan Gross
This time, the shots didn't ring out in a movie theater in Colorado, outside a Safeway in Arizona, at a spa or temple in Wisconsin, or on a Virginia college campus. This time, it was children, elementary school boys and girls in Newtown, their bodies carted out like battlefield casualties. A few days earlier, there was a mass shooting of Christmas shoppers at an Oregon mall. The week before, it was a murder-suicide committed by an NFL player. And every day, there were - and are - less prominent shootings.
NEWS
June 28, 2007 | By BRYAN MILLER
IT'S THE FIRST week of summer. As heat and humidity rise, gun deaths and injuries continue to climb in Philly, Camden, Reading, York, Harrisburg and elsewhere. Police and community organizers worry that summer's heat will fuel the fire. Two critical opportunities have arisen during this portentous week for local legislators to step up, show some courage and act to lower the flame of gun violence. Sadly, one such opportunity was missed on Tuesday, as Pennsylvania House Judiciary Committee Chairman Thomas Caltagirone (D-Berks)
NEWS
April 29, 1998
Last summer, two Pennsylvania legislators, Andrew Carn and T.J. Rooney, both Democrats, held public hearings on gun violence and gun safety. Hardly anyone came. Last year, Carn and Rooney introduced legislation aimed at toughening gun-safety laws. Hardly anyone listened. Today, however, it's a different story. Mayor Rendell recently went before gun manufacturers and called on them to help stop the violence caused by firearms. The city plans a major anti-gun violence campaign this summer.
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NEWS
November 20, 2014 | By Joe Dolinsky, Inquirer Staff Writer
You'll know Philadelphia CeaseFire's newest tool to combat gun violence when you see it. A converted 33-foot 1995 Winnebago branded with the words "Stop. Shooting. People. " doesn't exactly blend in. And that's the point. "This tool gives us a constant opportunity to show residents and those just driving by that we're really out here, on the streets, working toward a reduction in youth violence," said program director Marla Davis Bellamy. Bellamy spoke Tuesday outside Temple University's Student Faculty Center at 3300 N. Broad St., moments after the ribbon was cut on the mobile office by State Sen. Shirley Kitchen and Philadelphia City Council President Darrell L. Clarke.
NEWS
November 12, 2014 | BY JASON NARK, Daily News Staff Writer narkj@phillynews.com, 215-854-5916
THE CITIZENS up north in Potter County or in Greene County, about 300 miles west of Philadelphia, can usually count the number of annual homicides with one or two fingers. But any law-abiding citizen able to own a handgun there or anywhere else in Pennsylvania could file a lawsuit against Philadelphia, even if he's never been here, to challenge local firearms ordinances, thanks to a statute backed by the National Rifle Association that was signed into law by Gov. Corbett last week.
NEWS
November 4, 2014 | Inquirer Editorial Board
Under cover of night and in the final moments of the legislative session, lawmakers in Harrisburg robbed Philadelphia, Pittsburgh, and other communities of a weapon in their fight against gun violence. The legislature approved a bill allowing the National Rifle Association and others to sue cities and towns over gun ordinances - and, even more outrageously, forcing local governments to cover their legal costs. The process was as questionable as the result. The provision was smuggled into an unrelated bill on metal theft, and at one point the Senate voted to bypass a good-government rule requiring it to end voting at 11 p.m. The law will hamper local efforts to deal with illegal guns in a state that does little to help cities beset by violence.
NEWS
October 22, 2014 | By Amy Worden, Inquirer Staff Writer
HARRISBURG - In the final minutes of the legislative session, the House on Monday approved a bill clearing the way for the National Rifle Association and other groups to sue local municipalities, among them Philadelphia, that enact ordinances stricter than state firearms laws. The bill, approved by a 138-56 vote, will grant legal standing to "membership organizations" to sue over local gun laws, and collect legal fees and other costs if they win. Mayor Nutter said Monday before the vote that he was "profoundly opposed" to the bill, which he said increases the vulnerability of municipalities trying to combat gun violence to lawsuits by pro-gun advocates.
NEWS
October 18, 2014 | By Amy Worden, Inquirer Harrisburg Bureau
HARRISBURG - The state Senate closed out its 2013-14 session by passing more than a dozen pieces of legislation, many of them crime-related, including bills covering local gun ordinances, domestic violence, and animal cruelty. Most of the bills approved Thursday are headed for Gov. Corbett's desk, but others must receive final votes in the House, which returns for its last voting day Monday. Among the most controversial pieces of legislation moved by the Senate was a measure to give legal standing to "membership organizations," including the National Rifle Association, to sue municipalities if they enact gun laws stricter than state law. Philadelphia is one of 30 municipalities that have enacted ordinances mandating the reporting of lost and stolen weapons over the last several years since efforts failed to win passage of state gun-control laws.
NEWS
September 18, 2014
USUALLY it takes us at least a week or two after Harrisburg comes back to work after the summer to get exasperated or outraged at our state lawmakers. But this time, it's taken less than 24 hours. Lawmakers returned Monday from summer break; they'll convene for 11 days between now and late October, before another break for the election. (The Senate will convene a total of 10 days.) And, no, that's not even what we're upset about. Nor is it that the cigarette tax needed for the schools still hasn't passed; it is at least moving toward a vote.
NEWS
September 17, 2014 | By Helen Ubinas, Daily News Columnist
YOU HAVE TO give Philadelphia police officers credit for attending Fox Chase Community Night Out, part of a national anti-violence event to fight crime. And it's no surprise that the uniformed SWAT cops came armed with a few "toys" to attract residents to their table - a police van, a helmet, a couple of bulletproof vests. But when one of the toys is a semiautomatic rifle, you have to be stunned at the imprudence of putting the gun in the hands of children. Marion Brown certainly was. Besides being a Fox Chase resident, Brown is a co-coordinator of a local chapter of Heeding God's Call, a faith-based movement to prevent gun violence.
NEWS
August 26, 2014 | BY SHIRA GOODMAN & NICHOLAS RAMSEY
ON AUG. 1, just before 10 p.m. on Etting Street near Dickinson, in Grays Ferry, neighbors filled the street enjoying the mild summer evening. Three-year-old Tynirah Borum sat on a porch getting her hair braided. Two young men from the neighborhood arrived on a bicycle, began arguing and with complete disregard for life, fired off several rounds from a handgun. Tragically, they shot four people, one of whom was Tynirah. Shot through the left side of her chest, she died not long after.
NEWS
August 22, 2014 | BY JULIE SHAW, Daily News Staff Writer shawj@phillynews.com, 215-854-2592
AS A GROUP of law-enforcement and elected officials called yesterday for a mandatory two-year sentence for people convicted of illegally carrying a firearm, kids in the South Philadelphia neighborhood watched and played. It was a beautiful, sunny day. But on Aug. 1, horror enveloped the area after Tynirah Borum, 3, who was getting her hair braided on a porch on Etting Street near Dickinson, was fatally shot. The alleged gunman, Brandon Ruffin, 22, had been released from jail on July 3, after serving 23 months on an 11 1/2-to-23-month sentence after pleading guilty to illegally carrying a weapon.
NEWS
August 7, 2014
James S. Brady often said he tried to forget the hail of bullets that felled him 33 years ago. Fortunately, though, the former press secretary to Ronald Reagan kept other facets of the attempted assassination - especially the availability of guns and the nation's inability to keep them out of the hands of troubled people - in sharp focus. The fight for better gun control became a calling for Brady, who died of complications from his crippling wounds Monday at the age of 73. It was the lifesaving mission of a man who acknowledged that the life he knew before John W. Hinckley Jr. took aim was lost forever.
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