At Umpqua Community College in southwest Oregon Thursday, a gunman opened fire killing ten people and injuring seven others. Law enforcement has identified the man as 26-year-old Chris Harper Mercer who was not a student of the college. Mercer was said to have asked victims about their religious beliefs prior to shooting them. If victims answered “yes” to Mercer’s question as to whether or not they were Christian, he shot them in the head. If they said “no” or “other,” Mercer shot them elsewhere on their body.
Mercer was killed during a shootout with police officers. Four weapons were recovered from the scene – three handguns and a long rifle. Ammunition and a ballistics vest were also discovered.
This incident has Americans, including President Barack Obama, extremely frustrated at the nation’s gun culture. There have been 45 school shootings in 2015 alone. President Obama said in a press conference on Thursday that “”thoughts and prayers are not enough. It does not capture the heartache and grief and anger that we should feel, and it does nothing to prevent this carnage from being inflicted someplace else in America next week or a couple months from now.” He also called the shootings “routine” and said the nation has become “numb” to them.
A proposal unveiled by President Obama following the Sandy Hook Elementary shooting aimed to overhaul gun laws, including universal background checks in additional to other measures to help prevent mass shootings. The proposal was rejected by lawmakers on both sides in 2013.
The safety of both school campuses and movie theaters has been in question due to all the recent mass shootings across the nation and are a cause for anxiety for many.
What are Florida’s Gun Laws?
Knowing your local gun laws can shed some light as to exactly who can obtain a weapon and what the requirements are. Below we have identified the top criteria in order to purchase a handgun in the state of Florida.
- Persons must be 21 years of age and a resident of Florida to purchase a handgun in Florida.
- Fingerprints are not required; the background check is conducted utilizing demographic data.
- Florida does not require a specialized permit to purchase a firearm.
- There is a mandatory three day waiting period for all handgun purchases.
- Concealed Weapon Permit holders are subject to the same background check as persons who do not possess a Concealed Weapon Permit.
- There is no exemption to the background check requirement for Concealed Weapon Permit holders
The same requirements hold for purchasing a rifle or shotgun in Florida, however, the age requirement is only 18 and there is no waiting period for purchasing this type of gun.
For questions about gun laws in Florida or other personal injury matters, contact TJ Grimaldi at McIntyre Thanasides Bringgold Elliott Grimaldi & Guito, P.A.