Mayor says weapon used in Fourth of July shooting was legally obtained
Highland Park Mayor Nancy Rotering said Tuesday that the gun used in the July 4th parade shooting, where six people were killed and dozens were injured, was obtained legally.
Speaking to “Today” show host Hoda Kotb, Rotering said, “I don’t know where the gun came from, but I do know that it was legally obtained.”
She added that “at some point” the U.S. needs to have a conversation about mass shootings which she called “weekly events” that involve the murder of dozens of people with legally obtained guns.
“If that’s what our laws stand for then I think we need to reexamine the laws,” she added.
The shooting in the Chicago suburb on the national holiday has shaken the community, Rotering said. It follows other high-profile mass shootings across the country including at a supermarket in Buffalo, N.Y., that killed 10 people and at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, that killed 19 students and two teachers.
“This tragedy never should have arrived on our doorsteps and as a small town, everybody knows somebody who was affected by this directly and of course we’re all still reeling,” she added.
The mayor slammed prevalent gun culture in the United States and added that “we as a country have to have a very strong conversation with ourselves.”
“I don’t know how many more of these events need to occur. We’ve been talking about this literally for decades at this point. And it’s one of those things where you ask yourself, if this reflects the values of who we are, then what does that say about us as a nation?”
Her comments come as a doctor who was a first responder at the scene of the shooting said that the victims were “blown up” from the gunfire, causing “unspeakable” injuries.
The shooting comes on the heels of a a bipartisan gun reform bill that was signed into law by President Biden and was crafted in the wake of the recent mass shootings in the country.
The law includes measures cracking down on illegal gun sales, enhancing background checks for buyers under 21 years old and closing the so-called boyfriend loophole, but it did not address any laws to curb access to assault weapons such as the ones often used in mass shootings.