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LA City Council Approves Ghost Gun Ban

LOS ANGELES (CBSLA) — The Los Angeles City Council Tuesday unanimously approved an ordinance which bans the possession and sale of ghost guns.

feuer ghost guns
The Los Angeles City Attorney displays examples of ghost guns. February 2021. (credit: LA City Attorney's Office)

The ordinance -- which was first proposed back in August by Councilmembers Paul Koretz and Paul Krekorian – bans the "possession, purchase, sale, receipt and transportation of non-serialized, unfinished frames and unfinished receivers, and non-serialized firearms."

On Aug. 31, the council had unanimously voted to direct the City Attorney's Office to draft a ban similar to one which took effect in San Diego in October.

Violating the ban would constitute a misdemeanor offense.

Ghost guns, also known as kit guns, are assembled at home from parts that usually come in a kit and do not have serial numbers, as opposed to whole guns that are purchased from manufacturers. In April, President Joe Biden issued an executive action directing the Department of Justice to right rules that would stop the proliferation of ghost guns.

RELATED: LAPD Declare Ghost Guns an 'Epidemic,' Seizures Up 400% In Four Years

Koretz and Krekorian note that the kits usually cost between $400 and $525, come in cardboard boxes that contain steel barrels and other parts and, "because the parts are not finished guns, they mostly escape California's gun control laws."

So far this year, the L.A. Police Department reports that it has recovered at least 1,445 ghost guns, a 202% increase over 2020.

According to the motion, in July, LAPD Chief Michel Moore said ghost guns now account for one-third of all weapons recovered by the LAPD.

The November 2019 shooting at Saugus High School in Santa Clarita, in which a girl and a boy were killed and three of their classmates wounded when a fellow student opened fire, was committed with a ghost gun, Koretz noted.

A ghost gun was also used in the 2013 Santa Monica College shooting which left six people dead.

In February, the city of L.A. sued Polymer80, believed to be one of the largest sellers of "ghost gun" kits and parts.

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