Gun owners in Los Angeles may need to abide by additional gun regulations if a new law is approved.
The Los Angeles City Council voted unanimously on Tuesday to have the council's attorneys prepare an ordinance, which would require gun owners to follow strict protocol to store guns safely.
“What we voted on today will cement LA as the leading voice in the fight to keep children and families safe from gun violence,” Councilmember Paul Krekorian stated in a news release. Krekorian has led the efforts for the new ordinance.
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Under the new law, Angelenos would be required to store guns in locked containers, or to disable them with trigger locks while stored at home if the gun isn't "carried on the owner's body or within the owner's close proximity and control," according to a spokesman for Krekorian.
If passed, LA will be the largest California city with a safe storage policy, according to a spokesman for Krekorian.
Krekorian said the majority of shooting deaths of children in the U.S. "occur because a gun was not safely maintained in a home," adding that the new policy would reduce the amount of stolen guns, and help reduce the number of suicides.
"It's time for government at all levels to step up and do what's necessary to prevent this unnecessary violence," Krekorian said.
Councilman Mitch Englander said he supported the law during a Public Safety Committee meeting Tuesday, but admitted he was skeptical of whether or not it would reduce the number of children killed in gun-related deaths.
"There is no amount of any possible legislation to preempt stupidity, negligence and criminal behavior, no matter what we do here today," Englander said.
LA's gun policy already has stricter requirements than California state law, as LA law requires handguns be sold with locks and California law does not. However, LA's law does not force owners to use those locks, according to a spokesman for Krekorian.
Chad Chung, director of the CalGuns Shooting Sports Association, spoke about his position against adding another law to LA gun regulations arguing that, "adding one more that could potentially reduce somebody's ability to defend themselves when somebody breaks into their home is just unreasonable."
"You cannot legislate negligence, you can only educate it," Cheung said. "If you want to help people, I suggest you provide free firearm education with every purchase."
According to a spokesman for Krekorian, the City Council will hold a final vote on the safe storage policy next week.
Jessica Rice contributed to this report.