The parents of a late Guilford teen, Ethan Song, pleaded with lawmakers ahead of a public hearing to pass a bill that says unloaded firearms must be safely secured in a home with children, raising the age from 15 to 17.
Song accidentally shot and killed himself at a friend’s house in 2018.
“We simply believe that it’ll be much stronger, much more effective if there are consequences that go along with that rule. Consequences motivate people to do the right thing and that prevents a tragedy,” Ethan’s father, Mike, said.
Gun violence prevention advocates say its needed because, they say, statistics show 80 percent of child and teen suicides who die by gunshot use a gun belonging to a family member, and 75 percent of guns used in school shootings came from a shooter’s home or that of a relative.
“What we are trying to implement is preventative action which would actually, hopefully, go a lot further to keep children safe,” explained Scott Wilson, President of the CT Citizens Defense League.
Other potential bills require handguns to be securely locked in an unattended motor vehicles, banning so-called “ghost guns.” Those are weapons that are untraceable because they lack serial numbers.
One bans the transfer of any weapons banned under the post-Sandy Hook gun reforms, and another allows police to request a gun owners who is openly carrying a gun to show a permit.
But some residents showed up to speak out against that bill, saying it could open the door to police harassment.
There was some controversy on Monday.
One of the gun violence prevention advocates was caught sending a threatening text about lawmakers.
The advocate was escorted from the building, but Capitol police say no charges were filed against her.