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Des Moines takes steps to ban bump stocks, extended magazine

June 4, 2019

DES MOINES, Iowa (AP) — The Des Moines City Council is taking steps to ban high-capacity magazines and trigger devices that can make guns even more deadly, following a mass deadly shooting at a municipal building in Virginia.

The council unanimously voted Monday on a motion to draft ordinances that would ban extended magazines that hold more bullets than is standard and trigger activators such as bump stocks, the Des Moines Register reported. The city council is expected to have the ordinances drafted by July’s meeting.

The devices have been used in high-profile attacks across the nation.

On Friday, a city employee carrying numerous extended magazines opened fire in a municipal building in Virginia Beach , Virginia, killing 12 and injuring four people. Police shot and killed the gunman. In 2017, a gunman in Las Vegas used bump stocks that enabled his semi-automatic guns to fire nearly as fast as fully automatic weapons. That shooting left 59 people dead and wounded hundreds.

“There is no reason for people to have high-capacity magazines or bump stocks,” Des Moines Councilman Josh Mandelbaum said. Mandelbaum didn’t specify the number of rounds in a magazine that would be considered high capacity.

A federal ban on gun stocks took effect earlier this year.

Mandelbaum noted the Virginia shooting hits close to home because it happened at a building similar to Des Moines’ municipal facilities.

“We have a unique ability to take action,” he said.

Two Polk County supervisors backed the idea of a ban.

“This has gotten way out of hand,” Polk County Supervisor Angela Connolly said.

Polk County Supervisor Matt McCoy said although state law prohibits supervisors from enacting gun control, he believes they can act on magazines and bump-stocks.

Councilman Chris Coleman pointed out that the city isn’t coming after every gun in town.

“We’re not trying to change your way of life,” Coleman said. “But we’re going to protect our citizens from mass shootings.”

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