Parkinson to re-introduce new gun law - FOX13 News, WHBQ FOX 13

Parkinson to re-introduce new gun law

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MEMPHIS, Tenn. (FOX13) -

State Rep. Antonio Parkinson (D-Memphis) plans to re-introduce a tough new gun law to try and stop juvenile crime.

He believes adults who illegally give a gun to a teenager should be charged with a felony, at least.

Rep. Parkinson admits it is a form of gun control and if passed it should help prosecutors to reduce crime.

"Right now, we have a real crime issue in the city of Memphis where juveniles are committing violent crime," he said. "Yes, it is a form of gun control."

At least he is honest.

Rep. Parkinson wants to increase the penalty from a misdemeanor to a felony for someone caught committing such a crime.

"Not only the Class D felony tied to those who supplied the weapon to the minor, but if that minor uses that weapon in the commission of a crime, I'd like that person, who supplied that weapon, also be an accomplice to that crime as well," he said.

This bill has made it through a Republican-controlled Statehouse that wants to do a law allowing gun owner to keep a firearm locked in their vehicle at work.

The impact of Parkinson's bill is unknown.

The Shelby County Criminal Clerk's Office says there were only five cases from 2010-12 where an adult was charged with the specific crime of illegally giving gun to a juvenile.

"This is not a fix all to the gun problems in America, or the gun problem in the State of Tennessee, but it is a place to begin," Rep. Parkinson said. "Our legislation is specifically to take the weapons out of the people, the people who have the weapons the wrong person.  If we cut it off at the supply level, then maybe we can put a dent in some of the these individual or juveniles who are coming some of these violent crime with weapons."

His bill actually had bi-partisan support and made it all the way to budget committee, where it failed to pass, Rep. Parkinson said. He was told lawmakers had concerns about the cost of putting more people in prison for breaking the law.

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