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Gov. Brown says closing gun loophole is historic

Oregon

PORTLAND, Ore. (KOIN) — Oregon Governor Kate Brown is days away from signing HB 4145 — which expands an existing law to prevent intimate partner from buying and keeping guns if they have a domestic violence and stalking conviction.

Before, only married partners were prevented. 

Brown is proud that Oregon is the first state where a House and Senate have passed gun control legislation since Florida’s mass shooting. Some believe it’s an important step in saving lives.

Madeleine Garcelon’s daughter, Nicolette Naomia Elias, was killed by her ex-husband on Nov. 10, 2014. 

“Shot her with a crossbow and 7 times with a 9m Glock Plus P,” Garcelon said. “In an instant, our lives were shattered.” 

Ian Martin Elias did this with their two daughters at home before taking his own life.

“He was abusive. He made threats. He had a stalking order. He had violated that order,” Garcelon said. “The day he was supposed to go to court for that order was the day we buried my daughter.” 

Although closing what lawmakers are calling “the boyfriend loophole,” with HB 4145 wouldn’t have affected Garcelon’s daughter, she’s telling her story to help people see why anyone with a history of domestic violence should not have guns.

“Nobody’s trying to take your Second Amendment rights,” she said. “The only person who has to worry about this bill is if you’re a crazy, abusive boyfriend.”

Brown said in the last two years, Oregon has had 66 deaths due to domestic violence. More than half were gun-related.

“Absolutely unacceptable,” Brown said. “I was so pleased this legislature was willing to move forward and pass this legislation.” 

Oregon is leading the way in gun control since the Florida shooting and now other lawmakers across the country are following suit.

“This will be historic — given what just happened in Parkland, Florida –that a legislature was willing to take action. That a legislature and a state was willing to say ‘No more. Not on our watch.’ We’re going to end the senseless violence and this is one tool that we have to make that happen.”

Garcelon hopes this law will save lives.

“I hope it’ll save at least one person, at least one family or one child from going through the grief,” she said. “It’s surreal and it’s forever — you don’t get over it.” 

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