Louisiana Gov. Bobby Jindal (R) on Sunday defended gun policies in his state following a deadly theater shooting, saying the gunman should not have been able to obtain a weapon.

"That never should have happened," Jindal said on CBS's "Face the Nation" when asked about the suspect, John Houser, 59, purchasing a gun despite a history of mental illness, including being involuntarily committed to a hospital by family in Georgia in 2008.

ADVERTISEMENT

"Here in Louisiana, we actually passed tougher laws a couple of years ago so that, for example, if Houser had been involuntarily committed here in Louisiana, ... we would have reported that to the national background check system," Jindal said.

"He wouldn't have been able to buy a gun. He wouldn't have been able to go into a pawn shop and buy a gun as he did in another state," Jindal said.

Police have said that Houser legally purchased a handgun from a pawn shop in Phenix City, Ala., early last year, the same gun that was used in the theater shooting, according to CNN.

Houser opened fire in a crowded movie theater in Lafayette, La., on Thursday night, killing two people and injuring nine others before committing suicide, according to law enforcement.

Jindal, who suspended his 2016 presidential campaign in the wake of the shooting, deflected questions Friday about policies governing guns in the wake of the shooting.

"Look, every time this happens it seems like the person had a history of mental illness," Jindal said Sunday. "We need to make sure that the systems we have in place actually work."

"Like I said, in Louisiana, we toughened our laws a couple of years ago. If he had been involuntarily committed here, if he had tried to buy the gun here, he wouldn't have been allowed to do that," Jindal reiterated.