MINNEAPOLIS (AP) — Minneapolis Police Chief Tim Dolan spoke out Friday in support of federal legislation that would ban ammunition magazines that hold a large number of bullets.
The high-capacity magazines have been used in mass shootings, including the recent Tucson, Ariz., shooting that left six dead and 13 injured. In that incident, authorities say suspect Jared Loughner was carrying extended magazines that hold 30 rounds of ammunition.
“Law enforcement should not be outgunned by criminals: it’s just common sense,” Dolan said Friday in a prepared statement.
If passed, the ban would prohibit the sale or transfer of any magazine that holds more than 10 rounds. It would be legal to keep magazines bought before the ban’s start date.
Dolan is the first police chief in the Midwest to publicly support the ban, which was endorsed earlier by Los Angeles Police Chief Charlie Beck, the Major Cities Chiefs Association, and other law enforcement, city officials and groups against gun violence, according to the Citizens Crime Commission of New York City.
Dolan said the ban would make streets safer and protect police. He called on Congress to pass the bill authored by Rep. Carolyn McCarthy, D-N.Y., whose husband was killed and son seriously wounded in a 1993 shooting.
High-capacity ammunition magazines were banned by in 1994, but Congress didn’t renew the ban when it expired in 2004. Since then, such magazines have been used in several mass shootings, including the Virginia Tech slayings in 2007 that left 33 dead and the 2009 attack at Fort Hood, Texas, that killed 13.
High-capacity magazines are legal in Minnesota.
“There’s no reason any civilian needs 30-plus rounds of ammunition: police officers shouldn’t have to confront that much firepower, it’s not fair,” said Richard Aborn, President of the Citizens Crime Commission of New York City.
The National Rifle Association has said it would try to block the law, and that citizens should have access to high-capacity magazines to protect themselves from attacks by armed mobs.
Dolan also appeared at an event Friday sponsored by the group Mayors Against Illegal Guns as part of their national tour to promote legislation tightening the federal background check system.
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