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Update: Sen. Chappelle-Nadal Talks Gun Bill During Press Conference

Sen. Maria Chappelle-Nadal, D-University City, calls for "common-sense response" to surge in gun violence in press conference Wednesday.

State Sen. Maria Chappelle-Nadal, D-University City, is calling on Missouri lawmakers to enact reasonable gun safety regulations in the wake of one of the worst years of gun violence in recent memory. 

Chappelle-Nadal submitted Senate Bill 124, which would require gun owners to disclose what firearms are in their home to their child's school district. 

See our previous story: Have a Gun? Proposed Bill Would Require You to Tell Your Child's School

Senate Bill 124 creates the offense of failing to prevent illegal firearm possession, it creates the offense of negligent storage of a firearm and it requires a parent or guardian enrolling a child in school to notify the school district or the governing body of a private or charter school that the parent or guardian owns a firearm.

“I’m pleased our nation is finally having a long-overdue discussion about our national gun culture, and I applaud President Obama and Vice President Biden for their serious proposals to address gun violence, but as a Missouri Senator, my priority must be about making our communities safe for Missouri families,” Sen. Chappelle-Nadal said during a noon press conference today. 

Sen. Chappelle-Nadal said in a press release that while the nation grieves for loss of so many innocent lives lost to gun violence in Newtown, Aurora, Minneapolis, Milwaukee, Atlanta and other communities, random acts of gun violence in the St. Louis area have become a disturbing fact of life.

“Since August of last year, there have been more than a dozen incidents involving teenagers and guns in just the Fourteenth Senate district alone,” Sen. Chappelle-Nadal said. “In most cases, the guns have been stolen from an unsecured place in the home and then used in robberies, car-jackings and even murder. In one instance two kids were playing with a loaded gun they found in the home and one of them was accidentally killed. In two other cases the students took the guns to school.”  

Sen. Chappelle-Nadal said her bill is an attempt to reduce gun violence in urban communities and schools.

“As a member of the University City School Board, my biggest fear is a student bringing a gun to school,” Sen. Chappelle-Nadal said. “We also have too many gang members running around with weapons and settling scores with bullets.  It has to stop. That’s why I included the negligent storage of a firearm provision in my legislation. If kids cannot get their hands on a gun, that gun will not end up on the street or in our schools. If you own a gun, please use a gun lock and store it in a locked gun safe, and never store ammunition in the same place as the guns.”

Under Senate Bill 124, a parent or guardian of a child under the age of 18 commits an offense by recklessly storing or leaving a firearm in a manner that is likely to result in the child accessing the firearm – if the child obtains access to the firearm and unlawfully carries it to school, kills or injures another person with it or commits a crime with it.

The offense would be a Class A misdemeanor unless the child kills or injures another person, in which case it would be a Class D felony.

“Responsible gun owners have nothing to fear from my legislation, and nobody, at least nobody in Missouri, is talking about taking anyone’s guns away,” Sen. Chappelle-Nadal said. “I simply want to make sure that children do not have easy access to guns, especially children in urban settings. I’m not talking about farm kids who learn to hunt with a rifle or a shotgun; I’m talking about gang members turning our cities into war zones or disturbed teenagers who think the only way to settle differences is to take a gun to school. There are reasonable things we can do as a society to reduce the incidences of gun violence without infringing on anybody’s right to keep and bear arms.”

St. Louis Public Radio's Marshall Griffin reports from Jefferson City that Sen. Brian Nieves, R-Washington, called the bill 'alarming'. Nieves previously blogged about gun laws for Eureka-Wildwood Patch.

Johnathan R. January 24, 2013 at 04:03 PM
Unbelievable. How this woman keeps getting elected is baffling.
Matthew Chase January 24, 2013 at 04:11 PM
I am a U City resident, and while my kids don't attend the U City schools, they do attend school in U City. I have attended the school board meetings recently. If left up to that bunch of folks, this would already be law. Thankfully, it isn't. The state House and Senate are overwhelmingly Republican, and unlikely to pass anything that Ms. Chappale-Nadal has submitted regarding restrictions on our second amendment protected, God-given RIGHTS. Screw her and her ilk if they want to require governmental notification by citizenry of our firearms. (Open secret - I have lots of guns... She can come try and get 'em...) Though I make no secret of my ownership, for goodness' sake, I have a 4' X 8' Gadsden flag on the side of my house overlooking North & South Rd., and my proclivities are well known to the neighborhood. Government notification is unconstitutional, unnecessary, and will do NOTHING to protect ANYONE except (a) criminals, by making their victims have a false sense of security, and (b) the government, for if and (God-forbid) when they become tyrannical, having a registry of the firearms owned by the law-abiding...
Matthew Chase January 24, 2013 at 04:15 PM
Jonathan, don't be baffled. She keeps getting elected because the majority of the sheeple in U City and the area are the same morons who vote in Lacey Clay for decades (father or son- same difference...) They are the same morons who vote for Obama. What do you expect?
George Lenard January 24, 2013 at 04:36 PM
All I said was it may be useful to school security officials. I don't know how. But I would ask them. They know the limits of what they may do constitutionally, which does not include searching people or lockers just because parents own guns. It is conceivable that this proposal came through conversations with school officials and school security police officers. Those people probably maintain other information on students who are more likely to cause trouble (e.g., disciplinary records) and find it useful in doing their jobs, which include an obligation to protect our kids from violence. People are so quick to condemn based on inadequate facts...
George Lenard January 24, 2013 at 04:38 PM
Nice name calling, DPB. Makes for such a constructive dialogue and reflects so well on your intelligence and ability to articulate ideas. I'm impressed.
Maggie Rotermund January 24, 2013 at 04:42 PM
Please remember to keep the comments on topic and to refrain from personal attacks.
George Lenard January 24, 2013 at 04:44 PM
What other legal possessions do you have to report? Hmm. Your cars? Real property? Your income? Your business? A gun is a uniquely lethal object (yes I know, only in combination with a person, as "guns don't kill people, people kill people"), unlike your booze or meals, which usually only kill slowly and are not designed to do so.
George Lenard January 24, 2013 at 04:45 PM
You have some source for the statement that "the government cannot legally have a list of gun owners"? Just wondering...
George Lenard January 24, 2013 at 04:48 PM
"Open secret - I have lots of guns... She can come try and get 'em... Though I make no secret of my ownership, for goodness' sake." You just made yourself a burglary target, and if that happens, which I hope it doesn't, those guns will not wind up in the hands of "law-abiding, responsible gun owners."
RDBet January 24, 2013 at 04:52 PM
This bill provides a rare moment where normal people & responsible gun owners alike, can agree with the most right-wing fearmongering gun nut losers. The bill is moronic. This bill has no chance of passing and everybody knows it. It's more likely that the other extreme would pass -Missouri HB 170 -which would make criminals of local state or federal law enforcement officials who tried to enforce federal gun control initiatives, whether executive orders or passed by Congress. (where's the Patch coverage of that crazy bill??) The only rationale for Chappelle-Nadal's overreaching unviable bill is publicity stunt. If she was serious about curbing gun violence - her bill would be reasonable, Constitutional, and have co-sponsor of a moderate republican (if such a creature exists in Missouri)....Granted, it still wouldn't pass in MO, but such a bill then would be the "vocal counterweight' to the gun extremist politicians owned by the NRA. The Missouri legislature - with birther-speaker Tim Jones, and secessionist Brian Nieves and this lady- what a joke they are. The best we can hope for is that we have enough morons on each side to balance each other out
George Lenard January 24, 2013 at 04:53 PM
Oh, Matthew, of course, that explains it. You mean black people are "sheeple" and "morons," right?
Matthew Chase January 24, 2013 at 04:59 PM
No, George, you racist pinhead. I mean morons that vote for Lacey Clay are sheep, as are many (most?) Obama voters. If many of them in our neighborhood are black, so be it. The black community is such a uniform voting block, particularly when the candidate is black, that one may conclude that race plays a huge part of their decision-making calculus. I include, though, all Democratic Party voters who are enamored with scum like Lacey Clay, and misguided (though quite earnest and nice) people like Maria. I've met her several times and find her very pleasant, and very dedicated, and very misguided, though I occasionally agree with her on certain local topics. It's sad that everything with certain people (you are clearly one) boils down to screaming "racist" or pointing out that you believe I [clearly and only] refer to blacks. I could care less what color someone is. I care how they vote, particularly when their vote costs me money, freedom, or otherwise.
Lincoln Douglas January 24, 2013 at 05:11 PM
Hi George, yes I do report the items you mention (cars, property), but not to the school district. If I owned a gun legally, the state would know about it and it would be registered. There is no need for the school district to have this information. What would they possibly do with it? Send someone out to make sure I'm storing it properly? Why saddle the school district with enforcement of gun laws? The senator's bill has nothing to with educating children, which is the school district's primary purpose.
George Lenard January 24, 2013 at 05:28 PM
Thanks for clarifying. And for the additional gratuitous name calling ("racist pinhead" and "scum"). They make you appear so rational and intelligent... And perhaps race is a huge part of voting decisions by many (black and white). Unfortunately, race still matters, in all kinds of ways.
George Lenard January 24, 2013 at 05:33 PM
Thanks for clarifying, Lincoln. We do not know the intent of the school proposal or who may support it and why. But, sadly, a secondary purpose of the school district is keeping the kids safe from each other and outsiders. That should be quite clear following Newtown. We would rightfully be quite upset if after this tragedy our school board members and legislators were ignoring the issue of school security because it has "nothing to with educating children." No doubt they would be called "morons," idiots," "scum," "pinheads," and worse....
DPB January 24, 2013 at 09:22 PM
George, George, George! I don't see anywhere in my short comment where I called you, or the Senator, a name. I said the idiocy of the proffered idea is enough to make me sick to my stomach that someone thinks this is a way to stop criminals from committing crimes. I have gone through background checks (mandated by the Federal Gov't) and firearms training (mandated by me) to be a responsible gun owner and I see no reason for the school to know whom owns a gun. They are not doing such a good job of teaching or protecting our kids so far. This idea is just another back door way to gun control, along with making doctors ask if we own guns. Committing Murder has been outlawed since biblical times, see "Thou Shalt Not Murder" in the Ten Commandments, and yet it is still going on. I question why the Senator does not mention the shooting and killing of young black gang members by other young black gang members or get involved with trying to save them. Are they not important to the good Senator? If you stand near the Cabanne Neighborhood on a quiet night you can hear the gun fire! It isn't me and my law abiding friends whom are doing the shooting!!!
George Lenard January 24, 2013 at 10:23 PM
"Idiocy" and "maggot heave" is like name calling: it is just applied to ideas, not people. In either case, it adds nothing to the conversation, but merely serves to stir emotions. This is not a "back door way to gun control," it is a gun control proposal, right at the front door of the legislature. I'm far from convinced of the wisdom of the school notice provision, but would keep an open mind as to why it is proposed and who supports it and why they do. Once these ideas are clarified, one can address them. Until then, we are speculating. Yes, there has always been murder, but our society is both one of the most gun-laden (if not the most) and one of the ones with the highest murder rates. I prefer not to assume we can do nothing to improve the gun violence, which any sane person must agree is awful. I have no idea why you think the Senator doesn't care about "the killing of young black gang members by other young black gang members"; I would wager that she has that very much in mind.
George Lenard January 24, 2013 at 10:37 PM
I just saw this newsletter from Senator Chappelle-Nadal: http://www.senate.mo.gov/media/13info/Chappelle-Nadal/columns/012413-FULL.html#sb124 It links a video interview of her. How about this thought process: Can agree guns should be properly secured, especially those owned by parents with school-age children in the home? Should there be legal consequences for the parent if the parent fails to do so (as perhaps Nancy Lanza did) and as a result the gun is brought to school and/or used in a crime of violence? If so, then should officials (maybe not the schools, but the police) have information (the fact of parental gun ownership) that could quickly raise the possibility, for investigation, that the gun used belonged to the parent and was improperly stored?
DPB January 24, 2013 at 11:41 PM
George, you are incorrect that we are one of the ones with the highest murder rate. First of all, based upon the number of guns owned in this country, and using the gun grabbers emotional argument, there should be few if anyone alive to even read our posts on this web site. Still, give me a little time and I will find my list of the murder rates of the countries that have totally banned firearms (just to warn you, they are all much higher than the US murder rate). And yes, make no mistake, I am calling the idea idiotic!!! You are correct, I mispoke about it being back door to gun control. I should have said backdoor to gun confiscation! Gun Control implies we subjects might be allowed to own something to defend home and country.
Stephanie Peace January 24, 2013 at 11:45 PM
Schools have a responsibility to the kids. This means they should be paying attention to the kids who are having these kinds of problems in school that either make them a target of violence by other kids or make them bullys to target other children. This would entail getting those kids help in the form of COUNSELING!! We need to teach kids conflict resolution along with many adults. We need to focus on how to deal with our problems without violence or guns. This is how we help our children.
George Lenard January 25, 2013 at 12:00 AM
You are correct that many countries have higher murder rates: http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/List_of_countries_by_intentional_homicide_rate. None are in the "First World" pack we like to think we run with. We are at 4.8/100,000; Canada is at 1.6; UK 1.2; Spain 0.8; France 1.1; Germany 0.8; Australia 1.0, for example. To some extent, we would likely have higher homicide rates and third world lower, except for our ERs save so many from death by gunshot vs. the bleedouts and deaths from infection from even simple wounds in third world. Rest assured, "we subjects WILL be allowed to own something to defend home and country." Read DC v. Heller; the Supreme Court has made this clear--and it includes ordinary rifles, shotguns and handguns, though semiautomatics and guns now being defined as assault weapons in the Feinstein proposal are iffy. Confiscation will never be enacted, except for guns picked up and found to be owned unlawfully, IMHO. Gun owners (and, more importantly manufacturers) are too loud and well-funded for that to ever pass.
George Lenard January 25, 2013 at 12:04 AM
As to gun ownership rates, I am correct. "The United States owns more guns per resident, at about 0.89, than any other nation in the world. The U.S. is almost half again the next two highest nations, Serbia and Yemen at about 0.55 and triple major European countries like France and Germany." http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Number_of_guns_per_capita_by_country That we do not have the highest murder rate supports the fact that many or most guns are in the hands of "responsible gun owners"; that we have so much higher homicide rates than other countries we like to consider "civilized" should make us all consider whether we could do better...
Billy Frank Thornton January 25, 2013 at 01:18 AM
Thanks, Jon, for your commit...I was thinking the same thing only I've resided in University City for 62 years.
Billy Frank Thornton January 25, 2013 at 01:29 AM
...but not near dilusional? Would you happen to have a law degree...just wondering.
Billy Frank Thornton January 25, 2013 at 01:42 AM
Ms Stephanie...you are a ray of sunshine. With as many unemployed psychologist around, we can have one in each classroom. Maybe we can pay them as teachers aids...but, this country seems to be in sore need. The problem is a culture of violence...not weapons.
Billy Frank Thornton January 25, 2013 at 01:48 AM
We be here trying to roast marshmellows...and they keep throwing gasoline in the fire.
Billy Frank Thornton January 25, 2013 at 01:56 AM
Hard to imagine how such a "common-sense response" to gun violence is getting so much flak. Imagine.
Matthew Chase January 25, 2013 at 04:10 AM
Hey, DPB, I think George was referring to me - I did call him names. Well-warranted I think, since his first comment to me assumed that my disparagement of supporters of Nadal & Obama was necessarily because they are black - supporters and the politicians both I presume - in either case he assumed immediately that I dislike them because of their race rather than their pinheaded and idiotic policy. In other words, he immediately called me a racist, so I simply turned it around. This whole argument is silly, though. George is never convince us and vice-versa. Maria's bill is DOA since there is an overwhelming GOP majority in both houses and she is in the extreme minority - even including some Dems - as someone who seeks _any_ new gun laws of _any_ kind in this state.
DPB January 25, 2013 at 05:14 PM
Matthew, you are correct! It's like wrestling with a pig, you are not going to win and the pig loves it! I appreciate George's attempt to compare apples to oranges, though. Typical liberal logic! It does not matter to him that countries, whether 3rd world or not, which have banned guns have extremely high murder rates. It does not matter to him that Chicago, New York, Detroit, and other cities that have very restrictive gun laws have the highest rates of murder. Let's just take away legally owned property from people whom have never done anything wrong and feel good about ourselves! In effect, let's convict first and prove innocence later. I seem to remember British Law has that provision, few rights and guilty until proven innocent. And Billy Frank, I am not sure I understand where you are coming from, but I don't think it is a good place. Sure, we can entertain the idea the moon is made of cheese, but why would you want to? Seems to me the good senator and others would better serve their time in helping put violent criminals behind bars, work to get families back together (mothers and fathers raising children), establish community cohesiveness, and put God back to the forefront. I do not disrespect anyone because of the race, creed, sexual orientation, etc.,but I do have issues with insanity! (doing the same thing over and over and expecting a different result)
Billy Frank Thornton January 25, 2013 at 09:35 PM
...and DPB, I am coming from a place where the Senator seems to think it wise to collect names of parents with guns. After some thought, it might not be a bad idea. Anyone who would disclose gun ownership to a school district (or physician)...lacks good judgement and should have their weapons confiscated. My comment about providing better mental health capacities in our schools doesn't seem too far fetched...it might help turn about our culture of violence.

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