Oakland moves to ban grandfathered mags, add gun lock laws

Oakland moves to ban grandfathered mags, add gun lock laws

Oakland Vice Mayor Rebecca Kaplan feels the latest crop of proposed gun restrictions are needed following the San Bernardino attack. (Photo: Jane Philomen Cleland/East Bay Area Reporter)

Less than a week after a mass shooting in the state, city leaders in Oakland are moving to prohibit possession of any magazine capable of holding more than 10 rounds.

Four proposed local ordinances would mimic those already adopted in such California cities as San Francisco, Sunnyvale, and Los Angeles that surpass those already required by state law, which are among the strongest in the country.

“Thoughts and prayers are not enough,” said Vice Mayor Rebecca Kaplan, one of the ordinance’s authors. “We must take action. We do pray for those who have suffered, but we want to stop the suffering, we want to crack down on the illegal guns and stop making them so available and take this danger out of this community.”

Twin proposals by Kaplan and City Attorney Barbara Parker would mandate that gun owners and law enforcement who leave a firearm in a vehicle to lock it in a secure container under penalty of law. On the other side of the Bay, San Francisco is mulling a similar ordinance following a string of murders involving guns stolen from the vehicles of peace officers.

The Oakland Police Department does not have any policies requiring guns be stored locked boxes when in patrol cars or other vehicles as reported by the East Bay Express.

A third measure by Councilmembers Dan Kalb and Annie Campbell Washington would make storage laws for guns inside the home, specifically requiring they be locked in a safe or by a trigger lock when not in use. A similar law in San Francisco, introduced in 2007, has withstood numerous legal challenges on Second Amendment grounds.

The final proposal, also by Kalb and Washington, would ban the possession of any detachable magazine capable of holding more than 10 rounds. While California passed a statewide ban on these accessories in 2000, deeming them high-capacity magazines, those in lawful circulation at that time were allowed to linger. The new law would strip the grandfather status from those magazines and force them to be either turned in, moved out of the city, sold or destroyed.

Backers contend the devices aren’t needed and by banning lawful possession, lives can be saved.

“There are mass shootings almost daily in our country and we need to do all we can do to make it harder to access large volumes of ammunition,” said Kalb. “No one really needs a large capacity magazine. That’s why we need to ban them.”

Similar confiscatory magazine bans have be adopted in Sunnyvale and Los Angeles, each of which have seen the cities brought into court by gun rights groups, county sheriffs and concerned gun owners.

It was reported this week that the suspects in a mass shooting in San Bernardino at a holiday party for county employees that left 14 killed and 21 injured used lawfully bought but potentially illegally modified AR-15 style rifles as well as clumsily made improvised explosives as part of their rampage.

The FBI is currently investigating that shooting as a potential act of terrorism