Louisville mayor announces policy changes for guns handled in violent crimes
LOUISVILLE, Ky. (WAVE) - Louisville Mayor Craig Greenberg announced steps to reduce the number of illegal guns within the city by rendering guns inoperable and placing warning labels on the weapons once they are resold.
Greenberg said he has been working with Louisville Metro Police on the changes within the boundaries of Kentucky law, hoping to inform buyers who might otherwise not know a gun was used in a violent manner.
“This is a simple change and one that will have profound impacts,” Greenberg said. “When a gun is used in a crime, including homicide, crimes against children, or even against one of our police officers, our justice system spends hundreds of thousands of dollars and untold personnel hours getting that gun off the streets.”
State law requires LMPD to surrender weapons used in violent crime to Kentucky State Police, according to the mayor’s office, which could then be resold at local auctions.
The new change would have local law enforcement render the gun inoperable before turning it over, including:
- Removing the gun’s firing pin by properly trained officers
- Pairing the removed firing pin with the weapon, which is permissible under law
- Placing a warning sticker on the firearm explaining the firearm may have been used in a homicide, including the killing of a child
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“After review this is the current legal limit Louisville Metro Government can approach to reduce the chances that confiscated guns will be used to commit more crimes,” Greenberg said. “With some simple legislative changes our friends in Frankfort can save lives, save taxpayers money, and reduce the misery gun violence forces on local communities. This is a change I hope they make.”
Greenberg said further policy changes are in the works as part of a house bill filed in Frankfort that would allow the destruction of forfeited weapons.
Rep. Keturah Herron (D-Louisville) filed HB 325 to provide greater anti-violence efforts in Louisville, allowing the destruction of stockpiled weapons LMPD has to turn over to Kentucky State Police, preventing a possibility of a gun being used again in a violent manner.
“It’s unfortunate we even need this law,” Herron said. “We’re dedicated to utilizing every solution to solve our public safety crisis, we will take a multi-pronged approach including how we handle firearms after they are confiscated, along with intervention and prevention efforts.”
The legal memorandum of current policy changes was delivered to LMPD Interim Chief Jacquelyn Gwinn-Villaroel on Thursday, directing all officers to follow the new procedures.
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