ISLA VISTA (CBSLA.com) — The parents of two victims of the Isla Vista rampage are praising a new gun law in California that will temporarily limit access to firearms if a person’s family sees warning signs of violence.
“There haven’t been many happy days, and I never thought I’d have a happy day in Isla Vista again, but I’m very happy and I’m very proud of the state of California. They took action,” Bob Weiss, a father of one victim, told CBS2’s Amy Johnson.
His daughter, Veronica, was among those who were fatally shot in the Santa Barbara community on May 23.
Weiss joined Richard Martinez, who lost his son Christopher that same night, to celebrate the passing of AB-1014 at a Wednesday afternoon news conference.
“This new law will allow immediate family members or law enforcement to present evidence to a judge to obtain a court order prohibiting a person who is a danger to themselves or others from having a gun,” Martinez said.
Both fathers worked alongside lawmakers and fought tirelessly to get the law in place after the rampage that left seven young people dead, including the shooter, Elliot Rodger. Rodger’s parents contacted law enforcement after they grew concerned of his behavior.
“I don’t want other families to suffer in the way that we have. It’s worse than you can imagine to lose your child in this way,” Martinez added.
But some gun proponents say the new law is flawed.
“There has to be a balance between protecting our citizens and protecting the rights of our citizens. Whenever our government demands that we give up very fundamental civil rights in the name of security, we as citizens ought to always be wary of that,” Craig DeLuz of the California Association of Federal Firearms Licensees told Johnson via Skype.
AB-1014 goes into effect for law enforcement officers in January of 2015, and the following year for concerned family members.
“Our government quietly and swiftly took action in a very common-sense way for a very reasonable cause and they did something. We have a law now. We’re all safer. Our kids are safer,” Weiss added.