A 29-year-old Albuquerque man was accused of firing a .45-caliber pistol multiple times at a car carrying a couple and their 2-month-old baby. Last year, the man was charged with several felonies stemming from the September 2015 incident in Northern New Mexico. He pleaded not guilty and was released from jail on bond. One of the conditions of his release prohibited him from possessing firearms.
Just two weeks later, however, the suspect responded to an online ad for an AK WASR-10 rifle. He repeatedly called and texted the would-be seller, offering to pay $300 in cash.
A state Senate committee listened to an hour of emotional testimony Tuesday, then voted 5-3 on party lines to advance a bill expanding background checks for people buying guns. The packed hearing room included a sea of red T-shirts worn by members of a gun safety advocacy group called Moms Demand Action for Gun Sense in America. Many people fighting the measure also turned out, including a group of law enforcement officials who wore stickers announcing their opposition to Senate Bill 48 and the identical House Bill 50, which is scheduled for its first committee hearing Saturday. People on both sides of the issue shared personal stories with the Senate Public Affairs Committee about how violence has adversely affected their lives. Robin Brulé of Albuquerque, who supports expanding background checks, recounted how a robber shot and killed her mother, a 75-year-old retired teacher, last year in Arizona.
In a fundraising email to supporters, an “angry” and “frustrated” Michelle Lujan Grisham called for “common sense” action to curb gun violence. In the email, from her Friends of Michelle campaign committee, she notes a Washington Post article that showed there have been more mass shootings so far this year than days in the year. The Washington Post has been tracking shootings with multiple people injured or killed, such as the Los Altos Skate Park shooting that left one dead, one paralyzed and several others injured. Other counts only list those with multiple people killed. Lujan Grisham said that the “gun culture” in the United States helps lead to the shootings.