LOS ANGELES (AP) — The city’s police chief endorsed a proposed ban Wednesday on the sale and possession of the types of high-capacity ammunition magazines that have been repeatedly used in mass shootings.

If passed, the federal ban would prohibit any magazine that holds more than 10 rounds of ammunition, though magazines legally purchased before the ban’s start date would be exempt.

“Large capacity ammunition magazines are still being used by violent street gangs,” Charlie Beck said in a statement. “Common sense restrictions on these magazines would help LAPD officers better protect the public and themselves.”

The federal bill was authored by Rep. Carolyn McCarthy, D-N.Y., whose husband was killed and son seriously wounded in a 1993 shooting.

Several law enforcement officials have endorsed the proposed ban but Beck, who heads the nation’s third-largest police force after New York and Chicago, has the highest profile.

Jared Loughner, the suspect in the January shooting that critically wounded U.S. Rep. Gabrielle Giffords and killed six in Arizona, legally bought the 9 mm handgun he allegedly used at a Tucson store, and was also carrying extended magazines that hold 30 rounds of ammunition.

“Large-capacity ammunition magazines carry far more bullets than any civilian could possibly ever use,” Richard M. Aborn, president of the Citizens Crime Commission of New York City said in a statement. “Common sense restrictions provide law enforcement with a tactical advantage over criminals, making us all safer.”

A message left with the National Rifle Association was not immediately returned after business hours Tuesday.

High-capacity magazines were banned in 1994 but Congress refused to renew the law and it expired in 2004.

Since the ban expired, large-capacity magazines have been used in several mass shootings including the Virginia Tech slayings in 2007 that left 33 dead and the 2009 killings at Ft. Hood that killed 13.

(© Copyright 2010 The Associated Press. All Rights Reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.)

Comments (13)
  1. Lenny says:

    Don’t mean to be pessimistic but I don’t really see this having much impact on gun crime. It’s a thinly veiled attempt to reduce gun crime but it will do little in my opinion.

    Also, how ridiculous that magazines purchased before the ban will be exempt? Why not just call an amnesty and be done with it!!

  2. Mike says:

    “…repeatedly used in mass shootings…” The gang element will really pay attention to Chief Beck, I’m sure. The problem has nothing to do with rifle or pistol magazines. The problems is pure lawlessness bred by a our society. Murderers have no respect for human life. How will a smaller capacity magazine change that?

  3. JG says:

    Nothing worse than a liberal cop. This just means criminals will get them elsewhere or carry an extra round. It’s not going to stop the few rouge idiots out there.

  4. Cruiser says:

    As usual, it’s the good guys who follow the rules. It’s the thugs who will continue to carry the high capacity mags. If he thinks that it will make LA safe, then he should make is his officers carry a 10 round mags.

  5. William Chinn says:

    If its good enough for the law biding public, its good enough for LAPD. So if they use 10 round magazines in their weapons they will see how safe it really is.

  6. Buck says:

    Yup cops first should lead and teach us how this is a good thing. When ban was in effect it did nothing to help.

  7. BobbyGibby says:

    Real smart there Beck, that’ll do the trick. Banning them magazines and limiting the amount of caps a thug can pop off BEFORE he reloads his STOLEN gun with another mag.

    Hey Beck how about having a cash for high capacity mags turn in day, that ALWAYS works when they do it with guns..Oh Wait…

    Silly cop…No Doughnut.

  8. jason says:

    How does this prevent criminals from behaving any different than they are now? Sounds like the political class is becoming nervous about social unrest…

  9. wobbles says:

    Three’s something like 20,000 gun laws on the books. all targeted at “criminals” but has anyone ever heard of a criminal that cared something was illegal? Laws are like locks, they only work on honest people.Maybe instead of writing up some more empty headed feel good legistlation they might actually punsih criminals caught with guns intead of giving them the slap on the hand they get now? This is just another politician putting up legislation to be able to claim they are an anti-crime crusader in the next election. Can’ do that by actually enforcing the laws on the book and making sure harsh punishment is meted out, you have to do it by putting out yet another law but this one with YOUR name on it. What’s the point of adding another law when the ones on the books have no teeth now?

  10. William Chinn says:

    There is a sport called shooting. There is no sport called reloading a magazine. It takes 3 CA magazines to shoot the rounds from a standard 25 round magazine in a M&P 15-22 (shoots 22 LR). I spend more time loading the bullets into the magazine than participating in the sport. And, yeah, CA already has a ban on new magazines with a capacity greater than 10 rounds. They wanted us to register old magazines with greater capacity but that failed to become law. Today’s Los Angeles newspaper had another case of home invasion after a man had stabbed his child to death. If I’m the homeowner I’m hoping for all the rounds I can have.

  11. Dave says:

    Chuck schummer from ny makes tougher gun laws but no tougher gun laws for punks who use them …kinda like death wish 3 movie ware a poor jewish couple have there gun taken away by the cops but not the punks …..boy this world could use a few paul kerseys ….like guy charles brownse played in his death wish movies ….rember seen from death wish 1 …charles brownsen shoots punks in sub way robery crimes decline lol

  12. Dave says:

    Ahhh…another article about how the police know best. When seconds count the police will respond in minutes. This is just another attack at restricting the 2nd Amendment for law abiding citizens. Does he REALLY think because there is a ban on 10+ round magazines that the criminals will not use them!??? They want “common sense” gun laws but they have NO common sense. All this would hurt are law abiding citizens who enjoy the sport of shooting and not constantly reloading. This would do nothing to prenvent crime, and infact CA already has a 10+ round magazine ban in place and CA is still one of the highest crime States! Beck should focus on upholding the law and protecting law abiding citzens! He took an oath to uphold the constitution and that includes the 2nd Amendment!

  13. Frank S says:

    It’s dishearting to see how stupid our leaders are. Really Chief Beck, you think that because there is a ban on large capacity magazines that will stop criminals from using them!? How dumb are you? All this would affect are law abiding citizens, not criminals! Anyways, this law will never pass, he’s just on the wacko liberal anti gun train which is running out of steam fast. Gun control is a losing battle!!!

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