New Jersey rank as the state with the second-toughest gun laws in the country could not prevent a mass shooting at a Fairfield Township house party over the weekend, killing two people and wounding 12.
Murphy said New Jersey’s gun laws can´t stop the flow of illegal guns coming from other states. In order to control gun violence, the state needs federal help, the Democratic governor said, calling on Congress to act.
“This is a nation awash in guns, and we are not on an island.” Murphy said during a news conference Monday morning. “We are not immune as was proved two nights ago,” he said referring to the house party mass shooting.
As reported by nj.com, one person has been arrested so far and charged with several gun violations, including unlawful possession of a weapon, unlawful possession of a large-capacity magazine, and possession of a weapon for unlawful purposes, according to Cumberland County prosecutor Jennifer Webb-McRae.
“Something’s got to give in terms of gun safety,” Murphy said later in the day at his coronavirus briefing in Trenton. “Let’s put some common sense gun safety laws on the American books, not just at the state level. And I hope we get there sooner or later.”
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However, gun rights activists have criticized the need for more regulating laws. “It’s outrageous that Gov. Murphy, while he’s surrounded by armed guards, thinks another gun law would have prevented these horrific and disgusting crimes,” said Alejandro Roubian, president of the New Jersey Second Amendment Society.
Mass shooting demands stronger laws
Nevertheless, New Jersey lawmakers, as they have after other mass shooting, demand stronger national gun laws. “New Jersey has some of the toughest gun laws on the books, but unless Congress acts, illegal guns will find a way into our neighborhoods and more will die,” said U.S. Sen. Robert Menendez, D-N.J..
U.S. Sen. Cory Booker, D-N.J., said Congress “has failed to act” even though “the majority of Americans supporting common sense gun safety measures.”
In New Jersey, Murphy’s package of gun bills include raising the purchase age for all weapons to 18, banning .50 caliber rifles, requiring gun sellers to store information about ammunition sales and mandating that guns be stored in locked boxes.