WILMINGTON— On the one month anniversary of the horrific shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary, which left 20 children and six adults dead, Gov. Jack A. Markell and top state officials unveiled a five-prong package of gun control legislation Monday including propositions for required background checks for private firearm sales and reenacting the assault weapons ban.
The governor said he would speak to aspects of new mental health and school safety legislation at his State of the State address Thursday, with the unveiling of his gun safety agenda as the first step.
“I respect the Second Amendment, but the measures we are proposing today are entirely constitutional,” Gov. Markell said.
Forty percent of gun sales nationwide are acquired from unlicensed dealers. Gov. Markell said in Delaware over the past seven years 3,500 individuals have failed background checks to obtain permits for firearms; however, there is no legislation in place to stop those individuals from purchasing from a private, unlicensed dealer. The first gun control proposal would implement a universal background check and require checks for private firearm sales, except for sales between immediate family members.
“A system that ignores four out of 10 gun sales is a system that is broken and needs to be fixed,” the governor said.
Other proposals include banning military-style, assault-type weapons and ammunition clips holding more than five rounds for rifles and 10 rounds for handguns.
Officials also are proposing a ban on guns within 1,000 feet of schools and mandatory reporting of lost and stolen firearms.