Guns

Elaine Thompson / AP

A Pennsylvania House committee is advancing legislation to more aggressively take firearms from people who have a domestic violence restraining order against them or who are deemed dangerous by a judge.

The House Judiciary Committee passed several firearms-related bills Tuesday. Their fate in the Republican-controlled House of Representatives is unclear.

Matt Rourke / AP

With the state House and Senate both back in Harrisburg, lawmakers are turning their attention to a number of gun control and school safety bills.

The effort comes in the wake of a Texas school shooting that killed ten last week—the nation’s largest since the Florida shooting that killed seventeen in February.

When House lawmakers finish up a series of public hearings on gun control, House GOP Spokesman Steve Miskin said a number of stalled bills will start moving—likely in the “first week or two in June.”

Gov. Tom Wolf / Flickr

Pennsylvania Gov. Tom Wolf has announced a $1.5 million grant program aimed at reducing gun violence around the state.

Gov. Tom Wolf / Flickr

Gun-rights supporters crowded into the Capitol Rotunda in Harrisburg Monday to rally for their Second Amendment rights.

Representative Daryl Metcalfe (R-Butler) organized the annual event and said “the left is out of control” in proposing restrictions.

Wolf Pushes To End Gun Show Exception To Background Checks

Apr 23, 2018
Lisa Marie Pane / AP

Gov. Tom Wolf on Monday asked the Legislature to pass a measure expanding background checks on firearms in Pennsylvania and end an exception for private sales of shotguns, sporting rifles and semi-automatic rifles, known as the "gun show" loophole.

The Democratic governor appeared at a news conference in his Capitol office with officials from the Pennsylvania State Police supporting his call for action as lawmakers consider firearms-related measures in the wake of February's Parkland, Florida, high school shooting that killed 17 people.

Matt Nemeth / 90.5 WESA

State House lawmakers have completed their final session in a two-week series of Judiciary Committee hearings on gun violence.

They were inspired by the call for tougher gun laws in the wake of the school shooting in Parkland, Fla. that killed 17 people.

Despite some agreement on the importance of the issue, lawmakers are struggling mightily with solutions.

They tangled over one proposal after another, from expanding background checks, to arming teachers, to mandating schools install metal detectors, to banning AR-15 style weapons

Nam Y. Huh / AP

Dick's Sporting Goods is destroying all the guns and accessories that it stopped selling earlier this year after the school shooting in Parkland, Fla.

Pennsylvania Launches Concealed-Carry Website To Clarify Rules For Gun Owners

Apr 17, 2018
Seth Pearlman / AP File

The state Attorney General’s office has launched a website where gun owners can check which states recognize Pennsylvania’s concealed carry permits — and which outside permits are recognized by the commonwealth.

Pennsylvania only recognizes concealed carry licenses from the 29 other states with permitting requirements that are least as strict as its own, according to the most recent review by the A.G.’s office.

Megan Harris / 90.5 WESA

Sales associate Dale Benner adjusted his stance, peering through two layers of reinforced glass. Less than 10 yards ahead, a soft “pop pop” barely registered over the low hum of classic rock piped overhead.

Matt Rourke / AP

The Pennsylvania House Judiciary Committee is kicking off days of hearings on gun violence and public safety in the wake of February's school shooting that killed 17 people in Parkland, Fla.

Monday's hearing was the first of at least five scheduled to let House members who wish to come before the committee and advocate for changes to Pennsylvania's laws.

More than two dozen lawmakers were scheduled to testify at hearings stretching into next week.

PA District Arms Teachers With Rocks In Case Of School Shooter

Mar 24, 2018
Google Maps

A rural school district in eastern Pennsylvania is arming teachers and students with buckets of rocks as a last resort should an armed intruder burst in, the superintendent said Friday.

Every classroom in the district about 90 miles northwest of Philadelphia has a 5-gallon bucket of river stones, said Blue Mountain School District Superintendent David Helsel.

"We always strive to find new ways to keep our students safe," Helsel told The Associated Press in a telephone interview, adding that the rocks are one small part of the district's overall security plan.

Senate OKs Bill To Toughen Gun Laws In Domestic Abuse Cases

Mar 21, 2018
Carolyn Kaster / AP

The Pennsylvania Senate is giving unanimous approval to a bill to force people with a domestic violence ruling against them to more quickly forfeit their firearms.

The Senate's 50-0 vote Wednesday sends the bill to the House. Domestic violence- and gun violence-prevention groups support the bill. It passed after changes negotiated by gun-rights groups.

Matt Rourke / AP

A Pennsylvania Senate committee is advancing a bill to force people with a domestic violence ruling against them to more quickly give up their firearms.

The Judiciary Committee passed the bill unanimously Monday.

Under the bill, people convicted of domestic violence would have 48 hours to give up their firearms to a law enforcement agency, a federally licensed firearms dealer or their lawyer. Under current law, people convicted of domestic violence have 60 days and can give their guns to a relative, friend or neighbor.

Scott Dalton / AP

Dick's Sporting Goods on Tuesday reported disappointing holiday sales numbers in part due to weak demand for one-time hot brands like Under Armour.

The company's CEO also said recent changes to its firearm policies, ending the sale of guns to anyone under 21, will hurt future sales and may cause fewer shoppers to come to its stores.

Mike Stewart / AP

The school shooting in Parkland, Fla., that left 17 dead catalyzed a series of actions this week as Dick's Sporting Goods, WalMart, L.L. Bean, REI and Kroger joined the growing chorus of companies restricting weapon sales or rescinding NRA member perks and discounts.

AP Photo

In the wake of the Florida school shooting that killed 17 people, Pennsylvania US Senator Pat Toomey was among a number of lawmakers who met with President Trump Wednesday to discuss new gun control measures.

The second-term Republican's main proposal is a measure that would expand background checks for firearm purchases to include sales online and at gun shows.

The bipartisan bill is cosponsored by West Virginia Democrat Joe Manchin; a version was first introduced after 2012's Sandy Hook shooting, and narrowly defeated.

Keith Srakocic / AP


Congressional campaigns across Pennsylvania remain in flux since the state's high court issued a new congressional map last week. If the map survives a pending GOP lawsuit, it would take effect for the May primary.

Worshippers Clutching AR-15 Rifles Hold Commitment Ceremony At PA Church

Feb 28, 2018
Jacqueline Larma / AP

Crown-wearing worshipers clutching AR-15 rifles drank holy wine and exchanged or renewed wedding vows in a commitment ceremony at a Pennsylvania church on Wednesday, prompting a nearby school to cancel classes.

Pennsylvania Church To Bless Couples Toting AR-15 Rifles

Feb 21, 2018
Lisa Marie Pane / AP

A Pennsylvania-based offshoot of the Unification Church is encouraging couples to bring their AR-15 rifles with them to a commitment ceremony in the Pocono Mountains, a half-mile from an elementary school.

World Peace and Unification Sanctuary in Newfoundland said it planned the Feb. 28 ceremony months ago, well before last week's massacre at a Florida high school. Authorities say the alleged gunman used an AR-15 in the attack that killed 17.

An-Li Herring / 90.5 WESA

Attorney Conor Lamb (D-Mt. Lebanon) and state Rep. Rick Saccone (R-Elizabeth) largely stuck to their respective messages at Monday's first televised debate in the race to fill the vacant seat in Pennsylvania’s 18th Congressional District south of Pittsburgh.

J. Scott Applewhite / AP

In the aftermath of this week’s high school shooting in Florida, Sen. Pat Toomey (R-PA) is calling for improved federal background checks for firearms sales.

In a Facebook post Thursday, Toomey said he and his staff will “continue to reach out to senators on both sides of the aisle to see where progress can be made” on the issue.

Megan Harris / 90.5 WESA

Authorities have released the name of a man shot by a Pittsburgh police officer after officials allege he and another officer were fired upon over the weekend.

Allegheny County police said two Pittsburgh officers on foot patrol in the Homewood neighborhood shortly after 1 a.m. Sunday were fired upon by a man who emerged from behind a building. An officer returned fire then and when they found the suspect again.

Matt Rourke / AP

One of Governor Tom Wolf's potential gubernatorial rivals is taking issue with a 90-day emergency declaration he issued in response to mounting opioid overdose deaths.

David Zalubowski / AP

More than 10,000 Pennsylvanians have registered so far to receive a medical marijuana card.

But they are finding out that they can’t receive medical cannabis and still be able to legally purchase a firearm. That’s because under federal law all types of marijuana, including medical cannabis, are prohibited.

Sarah Schneider / 90.5 WESA

The state Senate is considering a plan to allow teachers and other school employees with permits to carry guns at work.

Supporters say it’s about keeping kids safe, while opponents are worried the measure would do just the opposite.

Senate Bill 383 is sponsored by GOP Senator Donald White of Armstrong County, who said it would give schools more options in protecting students.

He added, it could be particularly helpful for rural districts that are far from police stations and might not employ their own security guard.

Allegheny County Police

A Pennsylvania judge has dismissed drug and weapons charges stemming from a 2013 case against two men who were later charged in an ambush at a Wilkinsburg cookout that killed five adults and an unborn child last year.

Allegheny County Common Pleas Judge David Cashman on Monday granted a dismissal request from defense attorneys for 29-year-old Cheron Shelton and 27-year-old Robert Thomas along with a third defendant in the drug case, The Pittsburgh Post-Gazette reported.

David Goldman / AP

Families of people hurt or killed by police would not learn the identity of the officer involved for 30 days or until the completion of an investigation under a new bill making its way through the Pennsylvania legislature.

PA Game Commission via YouTube

The Pennsylvania Game Commission expects about 550,000 hunters to take to the woods as the state's 12-day deer rifle season opens.

The game commission has previously estimated that about 750,000 hunters — or roughly 75 percent of those with licenses — hunt on the opening day of rifle season.

But commission spokesman Travis Lau says that estimate is dropping because more hunters are taking deer during archery season.

The game commission says archery license sales have increased every year since 2007.

Gov. Tom Wolf / Flickr

 

Gov. Tom Wolf has signed a bill into law that expands the list of firearms permitted for hunting in Pennsylvania to include semi-automatic rifles and handguns.

The new law doesn't make semi-automatic weapons legal for hunting in time for the upcoming firearm deer season, which begins Monday.

Semi-automatic firearms discharge one shot for each pull of the trigger. The next cartridge is automatically pushed into the firing chamber.

State Legislators Again Put Local Gun Laws In Crosshairs

Sep 20, 2016
Matt Nemeth / 90.5 WESA

  Pennsylvania lawmakers are moving closer to re-enacting legislation that would let the National Rifle Association and similar groups challenge local gun regulations that are more restrictive than state law.

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