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The Impact of President Biden's Ghost Guns Plan on the Gun Violence Crisis in NY


@cody_thefirst 45 winchester

DAVID NEWTOWN, INTRO:

In New York, gun violence has been an issue for years and lately trending up..

Two weeks ago, President Biden announced a plan to crack down on “ghost guns”, as part of a larger proposal to congress. Shantel Destra asks how plans from the white house will affect New Yorkers. And, a note about content: this story will contain some descriptions of violence.



SHANTEL DESTRA:

Late last year, 16-year-old Kyla Sobers-Batties was making TikTok Videos after school with friends in a Brooklyn park. Out of nowhere, three men opened fire into the park. Sobers was shot in the head. Her mother, Nadine Sobers, says she was in disbelief when she learned the news.


NADINE SOBERS:

I couldn't speak, all I could do basically was start screaming and I'm not that emotional person. I've never really been that much emotional, but in that situation, really kind of, you know, it puts you in a different time and space.


DESTRA:

Sobers says it was difficult for her to see her daughter lying in a hospital bed. (0:04)



SOBERS:

She had no hair and her head was swollen to like three times its normal size. And she had gauze on the top of her head from where they had to go in and cut into her head and I froze..


DESTRA: Since the shooting, Sobers-Batties has had a long road to recovery. She has trouble remembering things and had to relearn how to walk. But that incident is only one of two thousand shootings in the city last year. It’s unclear what kind of gun was used in the shooting. But the NYPD has been paying a lot of attention to ghost guns recently. They’re untraceable and unregulated. They’re often sold in parts online and assembled at home. Which makes them very accessible to criminals and minors who aren’t allowed to buy guns.


Part of President Biden’s new plans is ensuring all ghost guns have a serial number. Robert Spitzer is a Professor specializing in Politics and Guns at SUNY. Spitzer says Biden’s plan is the right step.



ROBERT SPRITZER:

What's significant about ghost guns is that in the last three or four years, their appearances in crimes has increased dramatically, very significantly.


DESTRA:

The NYPD says they’ve recovered over one hundred and thirty “ghost guns'' since January. Spritzer says last year the 10s of 1000s of GG were used in crimes


SPRITZER: And the key point is that even though it's not a major problem, as a percentage of all guns and crime guns used in crime right now, it will be..



DESTRA:

Deanna Logan is Director of the Mayor’s Office of Criminal Justice. She agrees that President Biden's plans are a good start to addressing gun violence. (0:11)


DEANNA LOGAN:

When we're thinking about gun violence, and actually just the proliferation of guns, that is a key tool in being able to stop that proliferation.


DESTRA:

But she says more is needed- like stopping the flow of guns coming in from states with looser gun laws. The White House has said they also have plans to tackle this as well.



DESTRA:

Biden’s Ghost Gun Plan is one of MANY items on the legislative agenda. Congress still has a stalled Build Back Better plan, voting rights, and Ukraine to grapple with. It is unlikely that Congress will have enough time to get the Ghost Gun’s plan passed in the next couple of months before the end of this legislative session.

Shantel Destra. Columbia Radio News.


















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