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More than two years after the fatal shooting at Sandy Hook Elementary School in Newtown, Connecticut, a state commission released on Thursday a 256-page report detailing recommendations on how similar school tragedies might be prevented, the New York Times reported.
In the report’s forward, Connecticut Gov. Dannel P. Malloy wrote that “responsible, law-abiding citizens” have a right to bear arms, but said that right “cannot come at the expense of public safety.”
“We need to develop a common sense way to regulate access to guns,” he wrote.
The report includes recommendations that range from stricter gun laws to better training of school workers on how to handle an emergency situation like a mass shooting.
Watch PBS NewsHour Weekend’s full report on how the state of Connecticut has adopted some of the most restrictive gun policies in the country, including a controversial law enacted last year to keep weapons out of the hands of the mentally ill.
In December, PBS NewsHour spoke with Nicole Hockley, whose six-year-old son Dylan was one of the 20 children killed at Sandy Hook.
Following her son’s death, Hockley has become an advocate for increased restrictions on guns as well as regulations to keep weapons out of the hands of the mentally ill.
“I’m one of those people that I have to do something to stop it,” she said. “Partly in honor of Dylan and to give him a legacy that he’ll never have. And partly just because I can’t let it be a senseless tragedy because it was a preventable tragedy.”
As part of its recommendations, the state report said that large capacity magazines have “no legitimate place in the civilian population” and urged a ban on the sale, possession or use of magazines in excess of 10 rounds except for use by the military and police.
But others disagree that increased regulations on magazine capacity will make a difference if an attacker is intent on hurting people.
State representative Rob Sampson, named a “defender of freedom” by the National Rifle Association last year, told PBS NewsHour in December that regulating magazine capacity would not have stopped the killing at Sandy Hook.
You can watch a clip of our interview with Sampson in the video below:
“If I was to shoot you… you’d never get to me in time. You wouldn’t even try,” Sampson said. “I do not believe it is enough time to rush an attacker, and certainly not in the case when you’re talking about second graders.”
Elisabeth Ponsot (Beth) is the Digital News Editor at PBS NewsHour Weekend, where she oversees the program's online team.
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