Ore. lawmakers host public hearing on gun control bills

Public hearing at Oregon State Capitol - KATU photo

Lawmakers heard heated and at times emotional testimony Monday about two controversial gun bills making their way through the legislature.

Senate Bill 797 would allow Oregon State Police to indefinitely delay the purchase of a gun until the buyer has cleared a background check. Under current law, they have just three days to complete the check.

It also looks to prohibit convicted stalkers and abusers from having guns.

Senate Bill 868 would allow courts to order people to hand over their guns if they are at risk of suicide or hurting someone.

Committee room 50 was packed with people ready to have their voices heard on the controversial gun bills going through the Oregon legislature.

Both bills would limit who could get guns and how quickly they could get them, especially when in crisis or domestic violence situations. Governor Kate Brown her passionately expressed her support as the first speaker to address legislators.

“The deadly combination of guns and domestic violence is well documented, the presence of guns in domestic violence situations make it 5 times more likely a woman will be killed,” Governor Kate Brown said. “Today, a Gresham mother and family is grieving the loss of Janet and Jasmine - two little girls who were kidnapped, shot, and killed by their father."

Madeleine Garclon shared her daughters story.

“My daughter, Nicolette, was shot 7 times by her ex-husband,” Garclon said.

Even with a restraining order, Garclon says, her ex-son-in-law was still able to get a gun legally.

“They had been divorced 6 years, he was remarried he came over, kicked the door in and did this in front of my granddaughters who were just 7 and 8 at the time,” Garclon said.

Others in the audience said they believe gun laws should be protected.

“Current law in Oregon is really lacking the individual right to keep and bear arms, I’d like to see that expanded not limited,” said Phil Watson, who is opposed to the legislation.

Jenna Yuille, 28, lost both of her parents to guns. Her mother was killed in the Clackamas Town Center shooting.

“Losing my mom was more difficult than I could have ever imagined, four years later I would have never guess that I would lose my father too,” Jenna Yuille said.

Her father, took his own life in July of 2016. She says SB-868 could have saved his life.

“If I had known an extreme protection order was available I would have used it, and my dad wouldn't have been able to buy a gun that day,” Yuille said.

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