The woman who authored that statement, Sen. Maria Chapelle-Nadal, D-University City, has filed a bill that would require all parents who own guns to notify their local schools. Failure to do do would be a crime.
SB 124, a response to the December slayings at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Conn., also calls for the following:
-Creates a crime of failure to prevent children from accessing firearms.
-Creates the crime of negligent storage of a firearm
-Makes both of the above crimes a misdemeanors unless the guns are used to "kill or injure another person."
The bill's summary is printed below:
This act creates the offense of failing to stop illegal firearm possession. A person commits the offense if he or she is the parent or guardian of a child under the age of 18, he or she knows the child possesses a firearm in violation of the law, and he or she fails to stop the possession or report it to law enforcement.
The offense is a Class A misdemeanor unless death or injury results from the firearm possession in which case it is a Class D felony.
This act also creates the offense of negligent storage of a firearm. A parent or guardian of a child under the age of 18 commits the offense by recklessly storing or leaving a firearm in a manner that is likely to result in the child accessing the firearm if the child obtains access to the firearm and unlawfully carries it to school, kills or injures another person with it, or commits a crime with it.
A firearm that is in a secure location or locked is not considered to be recklessly stored or left in a manner likely to result in the child accessing the firearm.
The offense is a Class A misdemeanor unless the child kills or injures another person in which case it is a Class D felony.
The parent or guardian of a child injured or killed by a firearm may only be prosecuted for negligent storage of a firearm if he or she was grossly negligent.
This act requires a parent or guardian to notify a school district, or the governing body of a private or charter school, that he or she owns a firearm within 30 days of enrolling the child in school or becoming the owner of a firearm.
The written notification only needs to include the names of the parent and any child attending the school and the fact that the parent owns a firearm.
A person only needs to send one written notification if he or she has multiple children attending the school or becomes the owner of additional firearms. Any time a new child is enrolled in a school the parent or guardian must send an updated notification with the new child's name.
Failure to notify the school under this act is an infraction, punishable by a fine of up to $100. If a person is found guilty of negligent storage of a firearm and has failed to notify the school of firearm ownership, the person must be fined $1,000 in addition to any other penalties authorized by law.
Sen. Chapelle-Nadal indicated she would take steps to prevent school shootings in her statement following the Sandy Hook murders:
At a time like this, it is difficult to know how to respond to the mass killing of innocent souls and impossible to find words to comfort the survivors. Unfortunately, we have had far too many times like this. Each time a gunman enters a school, or a theater, or a mall and begins randomly killing people, our nation grieves and struggles to understand how such tragedies occur. We debate the effectiveness of our mental health programs, we argue over gun control measurers, we vow it will never happen again, and then it does. The fact most of the latest victims are young children shocks our conscience, but will it motivate us to consider meaningful change? Perhaps the answer lies not with our leaders in Washington, D. C. but with ourselves, in our communities. As a member of the University City School Board, I have requested a full review of our school district's safety policies and procedures for consideration at our next meeting. I intend to file meaningful legislation in the Missouri Senate addressing the plague of gun violence in our schools. Education is among my top priorities as a legislator, but children cannot learn if they do not feel safe. I do not pretend to have the answers, but I do intend to begin asking serious questions in search of serious solutions. At this time, we grieve with the parents, the grandparents and the brothers and sisters of those lost in this latest episode of senseless violence. Going forward, our solemn duty must be to ensure it does not happen again.
The bill received its first reading Wednesday.