Memphis Mayor: “Grave Concerns” On Seized Guns Going To Criminals


Despite a call from Memphis Mayor A.C. Wharton to overturn a Tennessee law that forces law enforcement agencies to resell weapons that it confiscates, the law’s Senate sponsor said a “repeal is not likely,” reports the Memphis Commercial Appeal. The law forbids destruction of confiscated guns unless they are unsafe or inoperable and requires them to be either sold or retained for law enforcement use. It statute was passed at the urging of the National Rifle Association.

The law had no impact on the Memphis guns used in a gunman’s fatal attack in the Las Vegas courthouse on Jan. 4 and a shooting March 4 at a subway stop at the Pentagon. That’s because the guns were sold in 2005 and 2008, years before the new law went into effect. Wharton said he has concerns about guns being used in crimes potentially winding up in the hands of criminals. Wharton cited a New York Times article yesterday profiling the victims of the shootings at the Pentagon, where one of the weapons used was traded by the Memphis Police Department in 2008. “The story didn’t mention that, but I kept thinking these people were assaulted by a gun that came off our streets. I have grave concerns about that,” the mayor said.

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