County prosecutor calls for assault weapons ban in Illinois ‘and beyond’ in wake of Highland Park shooting

Lake County State’s Attorney Eric Rinehart has called for a nationwide, nationwide ban on assault weapons following the mass shooting at a July 4 parade that left seven people dead and dozens injured in Highland Park, Illinois.

Mr Rinehart, a resident of Highland Park, appeared at a press conference on Tuesday afternoon to announce that suspected Highland Park mass shooter Robert Crimo has been charged with seven counts of murder at the first degree and said that new charges against Mr. Crimo would be forthcoming.

He also used his platform to call on elected officials to strengthen gun control measures as the United States grapples with a new series of mass shootings inflicted by suspected shooters who legally bought their guns. fire.

“We should also ban assault weapons in Illinois and beyond,” Rinehart said. “The assault weapons ban was implemented in 1994 with bipartisan support and with the backing of law enforcement. It lasted ten years, and studies have shown that mass shootings like the one yesterday have decreased during those ten years. We should have the same ban in Illinois and beyond.

The crowd gathered outside the podium cheered as Mr Rinehart called for a new ban on assault weapons.

Rinehart also touted Illinois’ Red Flag Act to get guns out of the hands of people seen as threats to themselves or their communities, but said the state must work to do better. understand how it works.

“Illinois has a strong red flag law that keeps communities safe and respects everyone’s rights,” Rinehart said. “We need to dramatically increase awareness and education about this red flag law called the Illinois Gun Ban Ordinance.”

Mr. Crimo could serve as yet another example for the flaws in the US gun control system. The 21-year-old, who was wearing women’s clothing during the shooting, legally purchased the high-powered firearm he used and had a past that a former high school classmate recounted. BNC News was full of “red flags”.

Just two weeks ago, President Joe Biden signed the first substantive gun control bill in the United States in decades after the mass shooting at an elementary school in Uvalde, Texas, which killed 21 people. That bill tightened background checks on young gun buyers and shut down the “Boyfriend Loophole” to prevent domestic abusers from gaining access to guns, among other measures, but it did not ban any guns.

The bill passed the US Senate with bipartisan support – something Mr Rinehart said also once existed for an assault weapons ban. He argued that reinstating such a ban on a national level would not significantly infringe on American freedom, and certainly not in contrast to how this lack of a ban has infringed.

“All the people who died within walking distance of here lost their freedom,” Mr Rinehart said at the press conference. “Everything. Every ounce of freedom they had. The freedom to love. The freedom to learn. And the freedom to live a full life. Their freedom matters too. We need to do more as we think and reflect on their freedom on July 5.

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