Domestic violence victim advocates, pro-gun groups react to Governor Kasich's proposed gun change

Gov. John Kasich (WBNS-10TV)

COLUMBUS, Ohio - Domestic violence victim advocates say they are behind Ohio Governor John Kasich's ideas on gun control, while pro gun groups question what's next.

The governor announced six proposals to curb gun violence in Ohio.

One of his recommendations would keep firearms out of the hands of those with a domestic violence offense.

Victim advocates say this kind of law would help save lives.

Experts say the increased likelihood a domestic violence situation will turn fatal if a gun is present is 500%

"I don't know exactly how to put it into proportion to get someone to think about how much you're at risk of being murdered increases if there's a gun present," said Sue Vilillo, the executive director for CHOICES which is the city's only domestic violence shelter

Vilillo said what Governor Kasich is proposing is long overdue.

"It's a federal law and that Ohio's just never matched the federal law and it's a federal law for a reason," Vilillo said.

Governor Kasich made six recommendations that, if enacted, could curb gun violence in the state.

One idea would put gun restrictions on domestic violence offenders, which would bring Ohio laws in line with tougher federal laws.

"We agree with a couple points that he made, we're not so sure about other points. The devil is always in the details when we're talking about Ohio legislation," said Dean Rieck, the executive director for Buckeye Firearms Association.

He says the domestic violence law proposal comes with questions, like how it would be enforced.

"No one wants violent people to have access to firearms, but when we're talking about legislation we always have to look at the language, so what exactly is he proposing," Rieck said.

But domestic violence victim advocates keep seeing that big number, 500%.

"So since we know it, it's great that we're taking action to prevent it," Vilillo said.

Vilillo believes tougher state laws will save lives.

"It will certainly increase the safety of the victims of these crimes," Vilillo said.

The legislature has yet to discuss these ideas.

If you or someone you know could be in a domestic violence relationship you can call the CHOICES hotline at 614-224-4663.


Ohio Domestic Violence Network