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Weekend Bloodshed Must Be Met with Action

February 29, 2016

Advocates call on nation’s leaders to put an end to domestic violence homicides

Over the weekend, domestic violence perpetrators used firearms to murder wives, children, co-workers, bystanders, and a newly sworn-in police officer in high profile cases across the country.

“Our nation is reeling from a bloody weekend where 10 people were killed by domestic violence perpetrators,” said Kim Gandy, President and CEO of the National Network to End Domestic Violence (NNEDV). “Our hearts go out to the families of the victims and to the communities in shock.”

In each case – in Belfair, WA; Hesston, KS; and Woodbridge, VA – the killer took more than one life with a firearm.

“These senseless crimes have to stop. We urge our lawmakers and the Supreme Court to use their powers to reduce domestic abusers’ access to deadly weapons,” said Gandy. “With the frequency of these horrific crimes, we risk complacency. Yet there are solutions, if there is a political will to implement them.”

Infographic-Guns-quote-Kim-Gandy-2016

In an analysis of mass killings that took place between January 2009 and July 2015, Everytown for Gun Safety found a noteworthy connection between mass shooting incidents and domestic or family violence: in 57 percent of the cases, the shooter killed a current or former spouse or intimate partner or other family member.

NNEDV supports common sense firearms proposals that would reduce perpetrators’ access to firearms including expanding the law to prohibit abusive dating partners and non-intimate partner stalkers from possessing firearms; requiring firearm removal at the time temporary orders of protection are granted; and improvements to the criminal background check system. The Supreme Court is currently considering Voisine vs. United States, which could have significant ramifications on the federal firearm prohibitions for domestic abusers. Additionally, NNEDV urges lawmakers to increase resources for emergency shelter, housing, legal remedies, economic opportunities for survivors, and training for first responders.