LOS ANGELES (CBSLA.com) — Community groups, legislators and local elected officials were expected to announce legislation Friday aimed at preventing tragic accidents when toy guns too closely resemble real firearms.
The move comes after a 13-year-old boy from Santa Rosa was tragically shot and killed by a Sonoma County Sheriff’s deputy who mistook the Airsoft gun he was carrying for an actual AK-47.
State Senator Kevin de León (D-Alhambra) will introduce legislation along with Noreen Evans (D-Santa Rosa), and Assemblymembers Wesley Chesbro and Marc Levine in response to the death of Andy Lopez, who was fatally shot on Oct. 22 by 24-year veteran Sheriff’s Department Deputy Erick Gelhaus.
Last year, De León introduced Senate Bill 1315, which was signed in August 2012 by Governor Jerry Brown allowing cities in Los Angeles County to enact local ordinances more restrictive than state law regulating the manufacture, sale, possession, or use of any BB device, toy gun, or replica of a firearm “substantially similar to existing firearms.”
But de León told KNX 1070 NEWSRADIO that legislation may not go far enough.
“This new measure would be for the whole state of California,” he said. “The reality is you can buy the regulated toy gun in Los Angeles that has a distinct color, but you can go to Ventura, Oxnard and elsewhere and buy…something that looks like the real thing.”
A press conference is scheduled for 10 a.m.