Columbus passes "common sense" gun laws; organizations look at possible legal action

FILE - In this Oct. 4, 2017, file photo, shooting instructor Frankie McRae demonstrates the grip on an AR-15 rifle fitted with a "bump stock" at his 37 PSR Gun Club in Bunnlevel, N.C. (AP Photo/Allen G. Breed, File)

After Columbus City Council approved what members call "common sense" gun laws, Monday, President Shannon Hardin gave this statement:

"This package was about keeping our community safe. It's about doing what we can do as a city to make sure that we are abating gun violence in Columbus."

Monday evening, Chuck LaRosa with Ohioans for Concealed Carry gave this statement:

"We've already been in touch with our attorneys and we believe there may be numerous actionable violations of state law."

LaRosa says the organization is looking carefully at what was passed and will plan its next steps, which could include legal action.

Council passed ordinances that close the gaps between state and federal weapons laws, including the banning of bump stocks.

LaRosa says that's illegal.

He says Ohio's Revised Code 9.68 that deals with the right to bear arms states a person may own, possess, purchase or sell any firearm, part of a firearm, its ammunition and it's components.

LaRosa says a bump stock is a component.

"By banning the bump stock, they're banning what the ATF [Bureau of Alcohol, Tobacco, Firearms and Explosives] has long-determined, many times determined to be a gun component," he said.

The city also says no imitation guns can be sold to minors. LaRosa says that only adds to the "illusion of the forbidden fruit" to children.

Also, the new laws would protect victims of domestic violence, which can take away firearms from those involved in a domestic violence situation, or a violation of a protection order.

"What we have is a comprehensive plan that really speaks to neighborhood safety and community safety," Hardin said.

Hardin says out of 143 homicides in Columbus in 2017, 80 percent of those involved guns. He did not say, however, how many could have been prevented if laws like these were in place.

"Did he say anything about how many youngsters were killed in cars," LaRosa asked. "Or, what they're doing about that? It's many times more than what's happening with guns."

The city is prohibiting gun sales in residential areas and going after properties where a felony offense has happened.

"We believe that it is important for the city to step up and to act and to do what we can and to keep neighborhoods safe," Hardin said. "And, we believe that this plan is a good step in that direction."

Four ordinances. Eleven policies looking to make Columbus safer, but some fear it's at too steep a price.

"The city should not be allowed to violate what is an enumerated right in the U. S. Constitution and the State Constitution," LaRosa said.