Seattle bill would fine gun owners for not properly storing weapons

Seattle bill would fine gun owners for not properly storing weapons
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The mayor of Seattle introduced legislation on Thursday that would fine gun owners $500 to $10,000 for failing to safeguard their firearms. 

The proposal, drafted by Mayor Jenny Durkan and Councilmember M. Lorena González, follows a string of deadly mass shootings at high schools in Florida, Texas and elsewhere. 

Durkan sent the legislation to Seattle's City Council for consideration, according to the Seattle Times.

Last year, Washington state enacted an "extreme risk" gun law that allows local police to confiscate weapons from citizens believed to pose a danger to themselves or others.

So far, officers have seized 43 guns from citizens in Seattle, including a man who threatened to kill people at a church, a suicidal woman and a guy who brandished his handgun in a residential building, the Times reported.

If Durkan's measure is passed, Seattle gun owners could be met with a civil infraction if a “at-risk person,” including minors, accesses a weapon that was not properly secured.

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Durkan's proposal only applies to weapons that need to be stored, and excludes guns carried or owned by authorized users.

“The level of gun violence in our communities is not normal, and we can never think it is inevitable. We — especially our children — should not have to live like this,” Durkan said in a statement obtained by the paper.

Her announcement arrives just months after thousands of students across the country protested gun violence and called for stricter gun-control measures following the mass shooting at a high school in Parkland, Fla., in February that left 17 dead.