(Sacramento, CA) – At the request of Los Angeles Police Department (LAPD) Chief Charlie Beck after the December 2010 shooting of a 13-year-old boy by a LAPD officer, Senator Kevin de León introduced a bill to protect police and the public from the dangers of fake firearms. Senate Bill 798 passed out of the Senate Public Safety Committee today, Tuesday, April 26, 2011 after police officers presented a 9mm Beretta and a copycat BB gun, showing how easy it is to mistake a fake firearm for the real thing.
(Can you tell which one’s the real gun? Answer below)
“SB 798 will help keep our communities safe,” said Senator Kevin de León. “Today’s vote brought us one step closer to preventing tragic accidents,especially the shooting of minors and young adults, by law enforcement officers.”
Testifying in support of the bill were Alejandro Esparza, representing Los Angeles Mayor Antonio Villaraigosa; LAPD Deputy Chief and Chief of Detectives, David Doan; and Richard Tompkins, LAPD Detective and Firearms Expert and Sergeant William Moulder from the Los Angeles County Sheriff’s Department. The bill is also supported by Women Against Gun Violence.
SB 798 addresses this public safety problem by requiring BB guns to be brightly colored, adhering to the same laws and regulations set forth for imitation firearms.
SB 798 next moves to the Senate Floor for consideration early next month.
(Caption Answer: The upper gun with the gold seal is a 9mm Beretta and the lower gun is a copycat BB gun.)