Why a preventable shooting wasn’t thwarted

Feb 19, 2019, 4:49 PM

AURORA, Illinois — Years before Gary Martin, 45, opened fire on his coworkers at an Illinois warehouse last Friday, he received an official notice that his Firearm Owner’s Identification Card had been revoked and he was no longer authorized to own firearms.

But no one followed up with Martin. No one came to take his guns away. And on Friday, Martin took the lives of five people with a gun he should not have been allowed to retain, but was never forced to surrender.

“Once again we’re confronting an active shooter situation where laws were on the books, and the breakdown was in the enforcement of those laws,” KSL’s Jay McFarland said on Tuesday’s edition of the JayMac News Show. “There was a breakdown, and in large part because of that breakdown, five people were killed.”

A proud gun owner and concealed carry permit holder, McFarland is actively seeking gun violence solutions that protect citizens’ lives alongside their 2nd amendment rights. While this often prompts him to espouse new legislation, such as the “red flag law” bill currently making its way through the Utah legislature, McFarland says sometimes the solution is as simple as enforcing existing laws.

“This is an example of how — in every state — we need to be looking at the systems that are in place,” McFarland said. “We need to be looking at our background check systems and making sure that what we have right now on the books is working, that everybody is reporting like they’re supposed to.

“If somebody is supposed to surrender their weapon because they weren’t supposed to have it, I don’t know — call me crazy, but I think maybe we should go and get that gun,” he continued. “And who knows? Maybe if that had happened, five people might still be alive today.”

You can join JayMac’s gun control conversation online by using #gunwatch or by getting text updates if you text GUNS to 57500.

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Why a preventable shooting wasn’t thwarted