FIRST WARNING WEATHER: Flash Flood Watch Issued For Most Of Maryland Friday Afternoon Until 2 p.m. Saturday | Current Conditions | Current RadarDownload The WJZ Weather App

WJZ BREAKING: Ravens QB Joe Flacco will be out for a week with back soreness, per coach John Harbaugh.

Baltimore Officials Want Mandatory Sentencing For Illegal Guns

BALTIMORE (WJZ/AP) — Baltimore officials are proposing a mandatory one-year sentence for illegal gun possession within 100 yards of a school, park, church or public building.

Mayor Catherine Pugh announced the local legislation Friday, along with Police Commissioner Kevin Davis and other local officials.

“Violence has been escalating in our city since 2015,” Pugh said. “We know there’s almost a church on every corner in city of Baltimore, as it relates to this legislation, that’s a great thing.”

Pugh says the attorney general has provided an opinion that the local measure is constitutional.

“Mandatory means without possibility of parole, un-suspendable, these things are not much different than current law,” said Del. Kurt Anderson.

Police have said time and time again the problem is that illegal gun owners are not afraid of being caught with a deadly weapon in their hands. They refer to this as a quick solution and the best they can do right now.

City Council President Jack Young said people walking around Baltimore with illegal guns are not well-intentioned.

“Legislators from around the State, if what’s happening in Baltimore, was happening in their counties, they’d be on board with what we’re trying to do,” Young said.

Davis said the proposal aims to hold people who want to cause harm accountable.

“It’s a misdemeanor offense that more times than not, results in less jail time then a person gets for having 10 rocks of crack cocaine in their pocket,” he said.

He says out of 318 murders last year in Baltimore, 84 percent were committed by someone using a handgun. He says there have been 185 murders this year, 86 percent were committed by someone using a handgun.

In 605 recent arrests involving illegal guns, defendants were found guilty but 60 percent received more than half of their sentence suspended.

City police said nearly 90 percent of the murders this year were committed using a handgun.

Officials hope this leads to a push for even harsher sentences for illegal possession during the next legislative session in Annapolis.

Outside of schools, churches, parks and public buildings, the bill also includes public places. The mayor said any business could be considered a public place, although, some are private.

Officials say the plan is to introduce this bill on Monday for a city that’s on pace for a third straight year of 300 homicides.

Follow @CBSBaltimore on Twitter and like WJZ-TV | CBS Baltimore on Facebook

(© Copyright 2017 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

More from Rick Ritter
Comments

Leave a Reply

Please log in using one of these methods to post your comment:

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out / Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out / Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out / Change )

Connecting to %s

More From CBS Baltimore

Track Weather On The Go With Our App!
Your Podcast Network Play.it
CBS All Access

Watch & Listen LIVE