Council ratifies ordinance requiring safe gun storage

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SAN DIEGO -- The San Diego City Council voted Tuesday 7-2 to formally approve an ordinance requiring gun owners to store guns in a locked container or disable them with a trigger lock when they are not in use or being carried.

City Council members Scott Sherman and Chris Cate voted against the ordinance Tuesday as they did the first time. The 7-2 vote means the council's approval is not subject to a mayoral veto.

The ordinance was proposed by San Diegans for Gun Violence Prevention (SD4GVP) and crafted by the City Attorney's Office under Mara Elliott.

“Our families will be safer once this law is on the books,” said Elliott said. “It is my hope that this ordinance will prevent tragedies and save lives by reminding gun owners to safely store their firearms.”

The Safe Storage of Firearms Ordinance requires that firearms in a residence be stored in a locked container or disabled with a trigger lock,

Under the ordinance, guns must be locked or disabled, except when the firearm is carried on the body of the gun owner or is within the gun owner’s immediate control.

Not everyone agreed with the new ordinance at the city council meeting Tuesday.

"There's a home invasion every two minutes in the U.S.," said Barry Bordack, a local volunteer with the California Rifle and Pistol Association. "Bad guys often run away when faced with armed resistance."

Bordack said recently in Carlsbad a man was stabbed during a home invasion until his son shot the intruder.

"You do not have the constitutional right or training to tell a gun owner how to secure the guns in their own home," said Bordack.

Fifteen California cities, including Los Angeles, San Jose, and San Francisco, have enacted similar laws to guard against accidental shootings, suicide, domestic violence, and theft.

A California state law already in existence mandates gun owners have to lock firearms away or disable the devices when someone under the age of 18 may have access to them.

Once the mayor signs the ordinance, it will go into effect in 30 days.

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