Louisiana House panel backs bill involving automatic guns

Courtesy: MGN Online
Courtesy: Cam427r / CC BY SA 3.0

BATON ROUGE, La. (AP) - Responding to a fatal Arizona gun range accident, Louisiana lawmakers have advanced a measure to keep fully automatic weapons out of the hands of young children.

A House criminal justice panel voted 7-6 Thursday for Rep. Barbara Norton's bill to fine, and possibly imprison, people who allow children under 13 to handle fully automatic firearms.

The full House will consider the legislation.

Norton, a Shreveport Democrat, proposed the bill after a 9-year-old girl lost control of the Uzi submachine gun she was firing and fatally shot her gun range instructor in 2014.

Rep. Tony Bacala called the bill overly broad, since it would seemingly prevent children from holding unloaded automatic guns.

Norton sponsored similar legislation in 2015, but it did not advance.