By BRENT MARTIN
St. Joseph Post
It will now be against city ordinance for minors to be in possession of handguns or ammunition without their parents’ consent.
St. Joseph city council members last night approved two proposals by Mayor Bill McMurray to amend city ordinance to conform with state law, prohibiting minors from having firearms or ammunition unless they have permission from their parents.
Violations could go through municipal court, rather than state court, under the ordinances.
McMurray says he hopes it makes parents more accountable when their children possess handguns.
“The ordinance is modeled after one that was introduced in Kansas City by Mayor Lucas and, of course, we have nothing like the difficulties they experience in Kansas City. But, as I say, we’re being pro-active. We don’t want to have those difficulties here in St. Joseph,” McMurray tells St. Joseph Post.
McMurray doesn’t see the ordinance as a crack down on those under 18 years of age, but more of a reminder to parents to properly teach their children about guns and make sure they are not handling firearms and ammunition without permission.
“I think it would alert parents to take a real pro-active effort here with their kids and we hope, being pro-active, this would prevent minors in possession of a firearm that should not have a firearm without their parents’ consent,” McMurray says.
The council gave the change unanimous support at last night’s meeting.