Garcetti Backs Bill to Strengthen Law in Wake of Isla Vista Shooting

Eric Garcetti.
Eric Garcetti. Photo: Victoria Bernal/Flickr/Creative Commons License

Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti said Thursday he is in favor of legislation that would help keep guns out of the hands of those with mental health problems, proposed by three state lawmakers following a rampage by a long-troubled young man who killed six students before taking his own life.

"I'm very much in favor of statewide leadership that would help us make sure that guns aren't in the hands of those folks that have mental issues," Garcetti told Video News West.

The mayor said he supports mandatory background checks nationwide.

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"This is so important because a gun in the wrong hands can lead to the kind of thing that we saw (in Santa Barbara)," Garcetti said. "These tragedies are unacceptable and it is something we can prevent."

Assemblyman Das Williams, D-Santa Barbara, and two other lawmakers this week proposed creating a "gun violence restraining order" that would temporarily keep a person with mental health issues from buying or possessing firearms after the police are called.

Elliot Rodger, 22, went on a rampage Friday night in Isla Vista, near UC Santa Barbara, killing his three roommates and three other students. A mental health agency called police to check on Rodger, and his alarmed mother also contacted authorities, after he posted videos on YouTube expressing his angry views on women and society and vowing to kill.

The legislation would create a system where family members or others could call law enforcement to report unstable loved ones. Authorities would then be able to investigate the threats and potentially seek a restraining order to keep the person form purchasing or possessing firearms.

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