Milwaukee mayor praises police for seizing more than 300 guns in 2017

Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett points to several firearms seized by Milwaukee police in 2017 (Photo: Fox 6 News)

Milwaukee Mayor Tom Barrett points to several firearms seized by Milwaukee police in 2017 (Photo: Fox 6 News)

Milwaukee’s mayor praised police Sunday for recovering more than 300 guns in 2017 and called for more funding and legislation to help the force deal with the problem.

FOX 6 News reports Milwaukee police are seizing guns at a rate of seven per day, totaling 337 guns seized since the start of the year. In 2016, officers seized more than 2,400 guns in Milwaukee.

At a Sunday press conference, Mayor Tom Barrett applauded The police department for its work in seizing the weapons and showed a display of more than a dozen firearms including AR-15s, sawed-off shotguns, and a variety of handguns.

Barrett noted that the officers are many times outgunned and spoke of a recent arrest of a felon in possession of a firearm.

“The officers performed a traffic stop and a passenger in the car had a loaded AR-15 assault rifle. I’m here today because I want to say ‘thank you.’ I want to say ‘thank you’ to all four of these officers and the other 1,800-plus officers who risk their lives every single day to make this community safer. Look what they’re up against. This is something you wouldn’t want your son or daughter to have to face in their job. It’s about getting home to your family, and obviously that’s always in the backs of our heads. I want you to know the sacrifices and the dangers that these police officers place themselves in, making sure that this is a safe city,” Barrett said.

Barrett pointed to a recent University of Chicago study that showed Milwaukee police are seizing more guns per capita that in in New York and Philadelphia.

“Do we have too many guns on the streets? The answer to that is clearly ‘yes,’ and we know that and that’s where we need help,” Barrett said.

He called for more funding for the police department and expressed support for legislation that would essentially prohibit anyone with three misdemeanor convictions from owning a gun.

“We need everyone involved in this to have a sense of urgency to deal with this problem,” Barrett said.