Savannah mayor to introduce ordinance to fine gun owners for not securing weapons

Published: Aug. 15, 2023 at 5:37 PM EDT
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SAVANNAH, Ga. (WTOC) - Savannah Mayor Van Johnson has announced plans aimed at reducing gun violence.

He says he’ll introduce a new ordinance that will fine gun owners who don’t properly store their firearms.

Mayor Johnson spent much of his news conference Tuesday talking about this latest round of weekend gun violence that left one person dead and three others injured.

The mayor says too many guns are in the hands of people that should not have them. He says an unacceptable number of guns are stolen from unlocked cars.

That’s prompting the mayor to introduce a new city ordinance that would hold gun owners who don’t properly secure their weapons responsible.

He says guns that are under car seats or in glove boxes can be stolen and eventually used to commit a crime.

Under this ordinance, the mayor says any gun owner in the city would be fined if they don’t store their weapon properly or report when it is stolen.

Mayor Johnson says in the wake of recent gun violence, city leaders must act.

“So you have a legal gun that is obtained illegally that is now used in an illegal act. If you’re able to stop that flow, then I think we might have less of those acts,” said Mayor Johnson.

Mayor Johnson says he plans to introduce that ordinance within 30 days after city lawyers review it.

As for the recent gun violence, there have been 10 homicides in Savannah this year. Six of those homicides happened in just the last month and a half.

The homicide count is still lower than this time last year.