Mentally Ill and guns - WALB.com, South Georgia News, Weather, Sports

Mentally Ill and guns

January 11, 2008

Georgia may soon have a better handle on preventing people with mental illnesses from getting guns. 

This week, President Bush signed a new law that provides a billion dollars to set up a nationwide tracking system.

The bill was introduced in 2002, but got more support after last year's Virginia Tech massacre. Some gun dealers say, right now, it's not hard for a person with a mental illness to beat the system.  

"Just for the purpose of firearms especially, not that we would have access to it but the people we run our background checks through should} have access to it. If that means maintaining a database, I think the government needs to do that," says Jason Sheffield of Dawson Road Pawn.

Some lawmakers say if the legislation were enacted sooner, it might have prevented the Virginia Tech deaths.

The shooter was able to buy two guns even though a court had ruled him unfit to carry one.

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